Yeast from Keningau pro­duces high qual­ity tapai

The Borneo Post (Sabah) - - HOME -

KENINGAU: High qual­ity tapai, the tra­di­tional rice wine pro­duced by the Kadazan­dusun and Mu­rut (KDM) com­mu­nity, doesn't just in­volve skills but taboos that must be strictly ob­served.

While there's no deny­ing that a tapai maker must have the ex­pe­ri­ence and skills in pre­par­ing the drink with the right mix of rice and mil­let, there are some taboos in get­ting the per­fect yeast or “sasad” for the drink to be well fermented.

“Yeast is the key se­cret to pro­duc­ing qual­ity Tapai,” said yeast maker Ju­raidah Jauhim, 36.

The best yeast is pro­duced by the KDM com­mu­nity and they strictly ob­serve the taboos.

“If th­ese taboos are not fol­lowed, there is a like­li­hood that the yeast that is made mainly from mil­let, would not pro­duce the taste that we ex­pect from fine qual­ity tapai – it could turn sour and that means it can­not be con­sumed at all,” she said.

Among the taboos that one must ob­serve be­fore pre­par­ing the yeast is to re­frain from touch­ing sour fruits and to keep away from get­ting into ar­gu­ments or con­fronta­tional sit­u­a­tions for at least a week.

The yeast is largely sold ahead of the Kaa­matan (har­vest) in May and dur­ing Christ­mas.

Juriah said that she earned up to RM1,300 a month just from sell­ing the yeast, adding that she could make up to RM3,000 a month dur­ing the fes­tive pe­riod. - Ber­nama

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