Facebook Twitter ShareAddThis
Soy From A to Z: 26 Things You Need to Know about Soy

Soy From A to Z: 26 Things You Need to Know about Soy

Discover everything you need to know about soy, one of the most popular ingredients of the century thanks to its properties.

By on

Soybeans are generally considered a complete protein source as they contain significant amounts of all the essential amino acids that must be provided to the human body because of the body's inability to synthesize them.

Biotech food
Soybeans are one of the most heavily genetically modified crops. OGM soybeans are being used in an increasing number of products. In 1997, about 8% of all soybeans cultivated for the commercial market in the United States were genetically modified. In 2010, the figure was 93%.

It is the country where Glicyne Max was probably born. Soy has been used in China since millennia, at least 5000 years. It was one of the five sacred plants for the legendary Emperor Shennong (2850 B.C.), together with barley, rice, wheat and millet.

Many recipes use dried soy, which has 398 calories for 100 gr.

Soy-based products are used as a low-cost substitute in meat and poultry products. The soy-based Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP) has been used for more than 50 years as a way of inexpensively extending ground beef without reducing its nutritional value.

Soy has a high protein value while it has a low fat content: only 18%. Its low content of saturated fat is claimed to have beneficial cardiovascular effects.

Glicyne Max
It is the scientific name of the plant, belonging to the bean family Fabaceae. It doesn’t exist in nature: it’s thought to be derived from Glycine soja.

It is the only crop which can produce more protein per acre than soybeans. Besides that, soybeans produce at least twice as much than any other major vegetable or grain crop; 5 to 10 times more than land set aside for grazing animals to make milk, and up to 15 times more protein per acre than land set aside for meat production.

Soybeans contain significant amounts of isoflavones, plant compounds that mimic estrogen; because of it, they have a role in influencing sex hormone metabolism. They are mostly considered beneficial for health –for instance in the prevention of breast cancer. However, some studies suggest large consumption consequences are controversial.

Also called soy milk, it is made by dry soybeans. Soy milk contains about the same proportion of protein as cow's milk.

‘Roasted soy flour’ is a product commonly used in Japanese cuisine, produced by finely grinding roasted soybeans into powder.

The name refers to a group fatty substances commercially used in foods requiring a natural emulsifier or lubricant. In confectionery, lecithin controls sugar crystallization, helps in the homogeneous mixing of ingredients, stabilizes emulsions and improves shelf life for some products. Lecithin is the emulsifier that keeps cocoa and cocoa butter in a candy bar from separating.

It is a condiment derived from yellow soy beans, very popular in the Far East, especially Korea and Japan. Natto. It is a traditional Japanese food made from soybeans fermented with Bacillus subtilis. It is popular especially as a breakfast food. It is characterized by a powerful smell, strong flavor, and slippery yet sticky texture.

Soybean oil is one of the most widely consumed cooking oils. It is also the primary source of biodiesel in the United States. Soybean seed contains about 19% oil. Protein. Soy has a very high protein content. Soy protein is correlated with significant decreases in bad cholesterol.

Soybean quotes at 30/03/2013 was 1404.75 dollar cents per bushel (60 pounds= 27 kg).

Environmental groups, such as Greenpeace and the WWF, have reported soybean cultivation in Brazil has destroyed huge areas of Amazon rainforest, and is encouraging further deforestation.

Healthy fresh bean sprouts can be easily grown at home in 3-5 days from the soya beans bought in the grocers. The whole shoot is edible, seed head and root included.

Also called bean curd, it is made from the soy milk curdling, in a similar process to the one used to produce dairy cheese. Fresh tofu can be soft/silked or firm; processed tofu include pickled and stinky varieties.

Soy sauce, or shoyu, is a condiment made from a fermented paste of boiled soybeans which has a distinct basic taste called umami, "pleasant savory taste" in Japanese, due to naturally occurring free glutamates. Umami was identified as a basic taste in 1908 by the Tokyo Imperial University.

Soy-derived products are the vegetarian alternative to meat, as they are particularly nutritious. Soy foods encompass a wide variety of items including edamame (a preparation of immature soybeans soybeans), soy flour, soymilk, tofu, TVP, soy oil, and fermented soy products such as soy sauce and tempeh. Adding to this list are all of those processed items that are made from these soy products including soy “meats”," soy cheeses”, and ice creams.

Soy is ubiquitous in the modern American and Western diet, not only the vegetarian one. Many foods contain some form of soy (soy flour and soy lethicin are often found in cereals, cake mixes, granola bars, and a whole host of other items). Trade associations supported by the largest processors of soybeans and soy products as ADM, Dow Chemical Company, DuPont and Monsanto, have increased the consumption of soy products dramatically in recent years. X, F, H, K,N,Q,U. They are the delivery dates – corresponding to November, January, March, May, August and September – of the soybean futures traded on the Chicago Board of Trade.

Yellow soybean paste
It is a fermented paste made from yellow soybeans, salt, water and eventually wheat flour. Despite its name, its color is brown or black. Typical of the Beijing cuisine and other cuisines of northern China, it is used most notably in the noodle dish called zhajiang mian.

Soy has a prime role in the Zen diet, a vegetarian diet originally eaten by Buddhist monks. Zen diet matches the five tastes (hot, sour, sweet, bitter, and salty) with the five colors (green, yellow, red, white, and black) by the five ways of cooking (fresh, boiling, roasting, frying, and steaming).

Register or login to Leave a Comment.