Okay, I'm committed now to making miso. I ordered the koji today, which is essentially cultured rice, necessary for making miso unless you have wild koji spores in the air (usually just in miso shops or basements where miso has been made for years). I haven't decided whether I will make the one that takes a year--red miso--or the one that takes only a month--sweet miso. The koji is expensive ($14.50/pound, and the miso uses 1.75 or 3.5 pounds), and the one that takes longer to ferment uses half the miso. So....I might start with that one and see how it goes. If I just love the process of making it I will probably order more koji and make the sweet miso.
I ordered on-line from South River Miso Company, and I added two types of miso to my order. I figured I was already paying for shipping so I should probably just go ahead and get some instant gratification and order some already-aged miso. I ordered a one-year fermented chickpea miso and a three-year fermented soybean and barley miso. Sounds good, huh? The red miso also requires a tablespoon of aged miso for the recipe so I will just use the miso I just ordered. I am really excited about this! The process does not look hard, just obviously time-consuming. I will get to finally use the room I have jokingly been referring to as my fermenting room since we moved into our house over the summer. The recipe (again from my pal Sanderkraut, author of Wild Fermentation) says to leave it in a non-heated cellar, basement, barn, garage etc. Bill's been busy converting our garage to his workshop so I don't think I'll put it in there to ferment because of the risk of some bits of metal or wood getting into it.
Note: the one-year actually refers to one summer so I will be able to check the miso in the fall, something to look forward to when the weather turns chilly again.