NAMA SHIRO AN
(RAW WHITE BEAN PASTE)

INGREDIENTS:
  • Makes about 1000 g of recipe ready white bean paste
  • Dried white lima beans 1 lb
  • Water sufficient for cooking beans

UTENSILS:
  • A large pan for cooking the beans
  • A very tightly woven cotton cloth with no holes
  • A strainer
  • One or more large pans for straining
  • A long handled wooden spoon
  • A gram-calibrated weighing scale

  1. Soak beans overnight, using ratio of 1 part bean to 2 parts water
  2. The following day, bring water and beans to a boil. Add 1 cup cold water then drain. Add clean cold water, bring to a boil again and drain a second time
  3. Starting with cold water a third time, bring to a boil. Cook beans on simmer until extremely soft. While cooking, carefully skim off any foam that appears. Stir occasionally so that beans on the bottom do not scorch. Add additional cold water when needed
  4. If any beans scorch, the taste will be ruined and the entire batch will have to be thrown out
  5. Once beans have cooked, cool. This makes the following steps easier
  6. Using a strainer, pour beans and liquid through a little at a time. Use your fingers, a pestle, or a masher to crush the beans. Make sure that no bean pulp remains in the bean shells. Add additional water during this step to help rinse the bean pulp out of the shells. Repeat as often as necessary until all that remains in the strainer are bean shells. Remove bean shells and discard
  7. Use a big enough pan so that no water is lost at this point.
  8. Strain liquid bean pulp through strainer a second time into a deep pan. This removes any unnoticed bean shell bits, giving finished an a more silky texture. Make sure that none of the bean pulp water is lost at this point.
  9. Let the bean pulp settle to bottom of deep pan. (this takes about 10-15 minutes) Place under very small, gentle trickle of water for about 10- 15 minutes. Let water gently roll over edge of pan, removing any scum, etc from the pulp. Let water gently slide over the edge of the pan. With your hand, gently scoop out any scum that rises to surface. Be careful that bean paste does not get stirred up.
  10. Be careful to not stir the bean pulp up during this stage or some bean pulp will be lost.
  11. Line a strainer with a very tightly woven damp cotton cloth with no holes. (Do not use cheese cloth.) Ladle some of the bean pulp liquid into it. Carefully gather up edges of cloth and firmly squeeze out all the liquid (this step needs lots of strength). What will be left is very silky raw white an. The resulting an should not be sticky, it should be dry and crumbly. Repeat above steps until all an has been removed from its liquid
  12. Don’t put in so much that the bean pulp liquid leaks out around the edges as the water is being squeezed out of the cloth. A bag made out of tightly woven fine cotton cloth is also possible to use.
  13. At this point the raw an can be weighed into usable 250g or 500g units and frozen for later use. Making this an is time consuming. Because it takes almost as much time to make a small amount as a large (5000g and up) amount, it is more efficient to make large amounts at one time, which can be frozen for later use.

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