Fermented Foods

Sourdough Bread

I enjoy making homemade bread from time to time. It’s not something I do every week but I probably make it about once a month. I’ve been tweaking this sourdough bread recipe for many years. Sourdough bread is fairly simple once you get the hang of it. A little note, you will need a sourdough bread starter, which I also have a recipe for and will post later this week. The starter recipe is not complicated but makes more sense if you already have a bread recipe to refer back to. I like sourdough bread because it’s much easier to digest than other forms of homemade bread. Sourdough has higher quantities of lactobacillus than other bread, which, you may remember, is the same type of probiotic found in yogurt. This is in the raw dough and doesn’t actually make it through the baking process, however, it does leave behind lactic acid. Lactic acid helps balance out phytic acid, which is found in lots of bread and inhibits the absorption of other nutrients. The lactic acid helps to make sure that the phytic acid is in balance and your body can digest the bread more effectively. Another note on lactic acid, it makes this bread naturally lower on the glycemic index. Overall, if you feel bloated after eating bread, then you may feel much better with a little homemade sourdough. I also like to add flax seed to this recipe. You all know how I feel about flax! Its such a […]

Kefir Water/Soda

I cannot say enough about the health benefits of fermented foods.  WE are the only culture that does not consume fermented foods on a regular basis and I for one, would like to change that!!!  They work even better than a probiotic, in my opinion, as I have experienced personally.   KEFIR WATER Kefir water has been life changing for me.  I have struggled for so long with digestive issues and this has made the biggest impact! Kefir is a cultured and microbal-rich food that helps to restore our friendly bacteria.   It contains strains of beneficial yeast and beneficial bacteria that give Kefir antibiotic properties.  It’s essentially a natural antibiotic!  My daughter had oral surgery this past week and instead of administering the antibiotic prescribed, we combined Kefir water with large doses of bioavailable echinacea to prevent any infection.   You will need: *Water Kefir grains (I order them from Cultures for Health..link is at the bottom) Strainer Bowl Raw Sugar Filtered water (if using tap water it must be boiled and then brought to room temperature) 1 quart glass jar 1. To hydrate the grains bring 1/2 cup of water to just boiling. 2. In a 1 quart glass jar, dissolve 1/4 cup raw sugar into the hot water. 3. Add 3 cups cool water to the sugar water mixture. 4.  Make sure the water is cool and then add the grains. 5. Cover with a cheesecloth and store in a warm, dark place (between 65 and 80 degrees) Soak for  3-4 days […]

Sauerkraut

This Saurkraut recipe is such a satisfying side with grilled chicken or some kind of roast. Something about the flavor helps to round out the meal and make you feel full. Its also make from cabbage which is a cruciferous vegetable that can help improve digestion with the fiber it offers and also balances hormone levels. The probiotics in this recipe work to elevate the good hormones in your body. Besides that, it is an incredible asset in preventing cancer and can actually decrease cancer risk by removing toxins (xeno-estrogens) from the body. I try to find ways to incorporate fermented food into my diet and this is a great way to do so. It’s so good for your overall gut health. A little side note: If you choose to strain the whey when making my homemade yogurt, this is the perfect use for it. If you don’t have whey then water also does the trick. This recipe and the yogurt are perfect to make in the same week. Enjoy making these fermented foods and pay attention to how it makes your tummy feel. It has definitely helped me. Happy eating! Ingredients: Fresh Organic cabbage, 1 medium/large head 1/2 cup of whey from organic yogurt and (or) filtered, lightly salted water 2 TBS Salt (kosher or sea salt, non-iodized) A bowl Mandolin (optional) A potato masher or similar tool A large jar for fermenting with a lid A small ziploc bag   Directions: 1. Slice your cabbage into thin pieces or shreds. (you can […]

Sourdough Starter

I know for many of you that making your own sourdough bread starter is very daunting. I don’t blame you at all, it can be finicky because you are dealing with a live culture. It’s pretty cool when you think about it. I’ve been experimenting and I think I’ve come up with a good step by step guide for you. Making your own sourdough is really worth the effort.  In fact, the same starter, properly cared for, can live for years and it just gets better and better as it increases in potency. By trial and error, I’ve come to the conclusion that rye flour works best for the starter. I have used wheat and it lost its potency in about two weeks and my bread became too dense. For sourdough, you want potent but also a light texture.  You will need:  Fresh milled organic rye seed Cold water Large bowl Cheesecloth Rubber Band Directions: I started here with 1 cup of fresh milled organic rye seed. If you don’t have your own mill you can purchase rye flour. I would recommend storing the flour in the freezer as whole grain flours can go rancid in about three days. Just make sure to let the flour sit at room temperature before using it to feed the starter. 2. Add 1 cup of cold filtered water to make a soupy consistency. The bowl is then covered with a layer of cheesecloth so the starter can breathe. Remember, we are creating a […]