One of my favorite things is to make and eat are fermented foods.
Fermentation is a food preservation technique as well as an approach to preparing delicious food. It has been around for at least as long as fire has been used to cook food. People around the world ferment foods. They ferment vegetables, milk meat and beverages. Fermentation does not require refrigeration and is still a common practice around the world. Fermented foods are made by a technique that relies on yeast and other “friendly” bacteria to break down carbohydrates and proteins, rendering the food more digestible as well as nutritious. They are a good source of B vitamins and help to strengthen the immune system. Fermented foods also colonize the intestinal tract with friendly flora, which control putrefactive bacteria.
Digestion is the center of health; without a healthy digestive system it is impossible for the body to incorporate nutrients or to fully assimilate herbal tonics or remedies. A vibrant digestive system assists in the proper functioning of all body systems!
Types of fermentation:
Lactic Acid Vegetables
Black and oolong tea
Reasons to eat fermented foods:
-healthy way to eat vegetables
-enhance nutritional value
-uses less fossil fuel
-tastes great and compliments many foods
-good source of probiotics and enzymes for intestinal health
-organisms and enzymes counteract potential pathogens in food and the gut
-promotes brain, bowel as well as heart health and assists in stabilizing blood pressure (one of the compounds that is believed to offer these benefits is acetylcholine)
-promotes cell health, thus acts as an “anti” cancer food
-fermentation neutralizes compounds in food that prevent nutrient absorption in the body.
*adding herbs increases many of the above actions and adds additional healing qualities.
Below is one of my favorite recipes.
(adapted from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon)
Link to a video on making this delicious Kraut https://youtu.be/RJr4kD39eRo
-Carrots scrubbed and grated
-¼ cup non-iodized sea salt (Celtic salt works well for this recipe)
-grated fresh ginger (wild ginger can be used)
-when available I like to add the following: grated burdock root, wild carrot leaves and flowers, seaweed, juniper berries. and dandelion leaves. (As you can see this is a creative process, so you can find what you like and add it right in!
-ceramic crock or glass jar (size according to the quantity of carrots you use.
Mix above ingredients together in a bowl. Pack tightly into a container using either your fist or mallet. Be sure that vegetables are below the liquid that will be extracted when the vegetables are mixed together. To keep the mixture submerged a weight can be used.
Keep the container at room temperature 65-68 degrees for 2 weeks, then move to a cooler place. Taste after 2 weeks to determine if it is sufficiently soured. If not keep in a cool place for a few more days. This can be done in the refrigerator and can be stored there.