INGREDIENTS

1 1/2 – 2 pounds slivered cabbage

1 tablespoon course sea salt per pound of cabbage

1 onion, sliced thinly

2 tablespoons dill

2 tablespoons caraway seeds

DESCRIPTION

This is probably the most delicious kraut ever.

The recipe is based on one in The Essential Life, 3rd edition, page 386.

DIRECTIONS

Sauerkraut is very simple, and wonderfully healthy. It is a raw, fermented food, which means it will deliver health enhancing probiotics to the gut, while increasing alkalinity and nutrition absorption.

Put sliced/shredded cabbage and onion in a large bowl, sprinkle with coarse sea salt and your spices.

Massage the cabbage with your hands, after a few minutes it will begin to produce brine. Continue massaging, rather forcefully, until the bowl is very wet with the brine.

Place the cabbage mixture in your crock or Mason jar, a little at a time, pressing down as you go. The goal is to eliminate all air pockets, and cover the top surface with brine. When the jar is full you want to eliminate air getting into the cabbage, do so with one of these three methods.
1 – use an otter cabbage leaf to cover the top of the cabbage making a seal.
2 – use a small ziplock sandwich bag with some water in it to keep the cabbage submerged.
3 – use a glass weight, small canning jar with water in it, or a saucer to hold the cabbage under the surface of the brine.

Cover the jar with a cloth and rubber band to keep insects out, or use a canning jar lid, or special lid made for fermentation. .

Tamp the cabbage down daily to remove all gas that accumulates in the cabbage. After 6 or 7 days taste it, when it reaches the desired taste it is ready to be moved to the refrigerator.

NOTES

If mold forms, scrape it off, taste the sauerkraut below, if it tastes fine, keep it. If not, spit it out, and discard the batch.

Try my other fermented veggies recipes, and please share your comments below.

Instant Pot Yogurt

Lacto-Fermented Veggies

There is a big difference between fermented foods created on your countertop and pickled foods preserved with some kind of vinegar. The health benefits in fermented foods are numerous, probably the biggest one being they support and reinforce your natural bacteria colonies in your gut. Vinegar preserved foods lack the throngs of health enhancing bacterial colonies of fermented foods, and therefore lack the health enhancing benefits.

According to Dr. Axe, fermentation helps increase digestion and bioavailability of nutrients, as well manage and prevent disease, including H. pylori infection, cancer, liver disease, arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease and lactose intolerance. 

When vegetables like cabbage and cucumbers are left to steep and sit until the sugars are broken down to promote the growth of bacteria, this is when the vegetables are fermented. Check out my recipe for the best home fermented sauerkraut you have ever eaten!

Dr. Axe also says, “Fermented foods are also filled with beneficial bacteria that work as reinforcement for the good bacteria in the digestive system. Since 70 percent to 80 percent of the immune system lies in the gut, having proper balance of gut flora is important.”

The recipe below is my adaptation of a recipe from the Immigrant’s Table.

INGREDIENTS

4 tablespoons of whey (see note below)

1/2-1 cup of filtered water or as much as needed to top your jar

1 teaspoon of salt

2 cups of chopped – cauliflower carrots, and/or onions

3 garlic cloves peeled and coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon of oregano

1 1-quart glass container with a lid

DIRECTIONS

If using cauliflower separate into small florets, about 1 to 2 inches in diameter.

Combine the filtered water, whey and salt in a separate jar, and stir or shake well, until the salt is dissolved. Taste the solution – it should taste briny.

Pack the jar with the vegetables, herbs and garlic cloves, until they reach about 1 inch from the mouth of the jars.

Pour your brine solution over your vegetables, completely submerging them. Top with more water if necessary.

Cover your jar with a lid. Leave it a dark corner of your kitchen counter for two to four days (the duration of their fermentation will depend on the temperature in your home). I place mine on the counter, under a towel.

Once the veggies have fermented to your liking you can move them to the refrigerator, they should last a few weeks there.

Be sure to eat a serving or two of fermented foods each day to maximize their life-giving benefits!

Note: I have read that if you have a previous batch of lacto-fermented veggies you can take 4-5 tablespoons of the liquid from a batch you have eaten and use it in place of ‘fresh” whey. I have experimented for myself with this method and it seems to work just fine.  If you need to ‘find’ some whey, line a fine strainer with cheesecloth, put a cup or two of yogurt in the strainer and place it above a larger bowl, the clear liquid that comes from the yogurt is whey. I use my home-made yogurt to get my whey, and the left-ver yogurt is much thicker, more like Greek yogurt. 

Here are some things from Dr. Perlmutter about the value of fermented foods.

And a few other interesting notes about the value of fermented foods in your regular daily diet.

I discovered a new fermented beverage on Dr. Axe’s page, Kvass, I will try it soon, and post my thoughts on this site.

Do you have a favorite fermented food? Check out my wild fermented sauerkraut, and share your comments below!

Dish of yogurt.
Home made yogurt is so easy with an Instant Pot!

Dairy, Fermented Foods

Cook Time: 9 hours Total Time: 10 hours

INGREDIENTS

1/2 gallon milk

2 Tbsp yogurt cultures

DESCRIPTION

Way more creamy and mild than typical store bought yogurt.

DIRECTIONS

Pour milk into inner pot of Instant Pot. Push Yogurt button then Adjust button until the screen reads “boil.” This will take about an hour.

When the boil cycle is complete, the Instant Pot display shows “yoga”.
Remove the lid and test the temperature. It should be around 180 degrees. 
Let inner pot sit in instant pot for 5 minutes and then remove inner pot.

Allow the milk to cool on the counter top for about an hour – to 105-115 degrees. 

Gently skim off the “skin” on the yogurt and discard.

I use a fork to carefully remove the skin.

Whisk in the yogurt starter – 1 tablespoon per quart of milk.

The skin has been removed, and starter yogurt added, and whisked in.

Place inner pot back in the Instant Pot and put the lid on. 

Press Yogurt button, then adjust the time using the + and – keys until screen reads 8:00.

Once Instant Pot beeps that it is complete, remove the yogurt to glass jars and store in the fridge.

Making yogurt with my Instant Pot.

NOTES

Cool more quickly by placing the inner pot in an ice bath, be sure to dry the bottom before returning to the pot.