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Planning the Shoyu Shimmy

Planning the Shoyu Shimmy stirred up lots of debate within the WOW Grinds Team. First of all, we wanted to rank the shoyus like we normally do, but we also wanted to check out the myth that some shoyu taste better in cooked applications while others are better for table use (i.e. dipping). It boiled down to the question of, "what you going taste the shoyu with cooked and uncooked?" Here's what we came up with...

Cooked Solution - For the cooked application, we decided to use each shoyu in a popular local home-cooked dish...shoyu hotdog. We figured that this simple and minimal dish would not overpower or mask the shoyu flavor and would give the judges a clear sense of each shoyu's distinct flavor when cooked. We used a simple recipe of one part shoyu to one part brown sugar and threw in about 18 pieces of Redondo's Weiners cut in to bite size pieces. We simmered each one for about 1-2 minutes just to heat the hotdog morsels.

Uncooked Solution - We were deciding between sashimi or tofu as the vehicle to taste the uncooked shoyu. We ended up going with the tofu due to its pretty neutral flavor which would allow for the shoyu to be highlighted. Plus tofu is way cheaper than sashimi.

We did the tasting in two rounds. First was the uncooked shoyu with tofu. Second was the cooked shoyu hotdog. For each round, we randomly assigned the shoyus to different letters. We did the same side by side judging style as the other challenges where all the dishes were lined up with their random letter. Then the judges served themselves in any order and scored each one. The only differnce in the judging was that we scored only by taste=100%.