Kimchi, Kraut, Kombucha and Kefir!

Seriously, who would have guessed five years ago that fermenting would become So important to me?  After struggling with my health, and my gut health for decades I had given up on anything ever helping!!

I love cooking.. It is my passion. The cares of a stressful, ugly world just melt away once I get into the kitchen and throw my apron on!  But I must admit the bustle of chopping and pounding and processing vegetables for fermenting is about to take first place.

So, the why.. Science has proven that the probiotics contained in fermented food not only makes you feel good, but can improve your digestion, your overall health and heal your gut… And you can’t be healthy with a sick gut!  It’s a form of food preservation (a way to keep your summer veggies longer!!) and quite frankly, fermented food tastes wonderful!

Gone are the days of that nasty canned, yellow sauerkraut that we had to eat when we were kids!!  Fermented sauerkraut doesn’t look that much different from fresh cabbage, and maintains the wonderful crunch! Personally I’m obsessed with the Asian ferments most of all… Every two weeks I make a gallon of my #CrazyAsianKraut.. An easy version of Korean Kimchi that utilizes plain old cabbage to maintain maximum Crunch!! It’s spicy, tangy, salty and altogether wonderful! I have some for breakfast each morning atop my spicy bone broth and fried eggs!

Then we have the wonderful probiotic drinks Kombucha and Kefir… Kombucha has been made famous by hipsters that are just cool, and whatever they drink is cool!! It’s made with sweetened tea and a big blob of cellulose called a scoby.. The flavor is reminiscent of Apple Cider Vinegar mixed with sweet tea.  And my newest love?  Water kefir… Utilizing sugar, water and kefir grains.. I make it with coconut water and then flavor it later with ginger and lemon!! Oh yum!!

Fermenting is not only great for your body, it’s so much fun to do!!

 

Here’s my CrazyAsianKraut Recipe… Try it!!

Crazy Asian Kraut

2 heads of cabbage – coarsely chopped

1 lb grated carrots

1 red onion – chopped

1 handful of Wakame – rehydrated and chopped

6 cloves garlic – chopped

2 inches ginger – shredded

2 large Daikon – chopped

1 cup tiny baby shrimp

2 T Red Boat Fish Sauce

2 T lime juice

1/2 cup Gochujang

2 T Salt

Sprinkle salt over cabbage and massage ( or beat, if you’re in a mood….) Wait till the liquid in the bottom of the tub is about 1/4 inch.. Mix in all other ingredients… Let it sit for another hour or two… Mash into 2 1/2 gallon jars… Pour the brine into the jars equally… Weight down and slap a lid on them.. Cover with a dishtowel, place in a dishtub and put in a cool shady place for a month !!     Then into the fridge!!!

By Sprouts Krauts and Spice

 

 

 

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2 responses

  1. Thank you for this email and all the inspiration through Facebook.

    I am also addicted to ferments. Here in Iceland very few people are interested in Fermentation so I am somewhat of a missionary 😉 have held a couple of short courses in fermenting vegetables and was interviewed in a magazine and gave instructions for making sauerkraut, also started an Icelandic FB page about fermented vegetables. Sometimes I have trouble finding the right ingredients for recipes. I’ll be traveling to the US next week so I’ll be ordering fermented shrimp and more Korean pepper flakes online to bring home with me 🙂 In my home Curtido is by far the most popular kraut, I propably have about two dozen different fermented vegetables in my fridge now. I just love trying new versions 🙂 at the moment my favorite is a mix of thinly sliced root vegetables, red beets, turnips, kohlrabi, rutabagas, onion and just a little ginger. Oh so pretty color! I grow a lot of vegetables and this year we had a pretty impressive harvest of carrots, so I’m trying out many different ways of fermenting carrots 🙂

    I want to try the Crazy Asian Kraut recipe and am wondering about the shrimps you use, are they fresh or cooked? Could I use frozen (thawed) shrimp? I love kimchi but this kraut sounds much quicker to make. Regards, Dagný

    Sent from my iPhone

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    • Hi Dagny! It’s nice to meet another Fermentista! I actually used the teeny dried salted shrimp. They also sell them in jars that are not dried. As I understand it, Korean cooks use all kinds of seafood. Even squid! These little ones seem to dissolve during fermentation, so you won’t ever see them again. But they add such great flavor!! Have fun!!

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