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Making fermented foods at home


SusanB.

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Search is coming up with some sauerkraut recipes, but not much else.

 

I've had a sensitive gut ever since a bout of food poisoning 4+ years ago now - haven't been the same since. The only thing that has helped seems to be probiotics.

 

I'd like to incorporate some fermented foods into my cooking repertoire - are there 30-compliant recipes that people would suggest for first-time fermenters?

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I'm still new at the fermenting thing, but I've found that I love fermented onions -- which surprised the heck out of me, since I don't care for raw onions. But fermented, the flavor mellows, and they're good in salads or just by themselves. I used this basic recipe, but added more salt and skipped the brine/whey, and then fermented for several weeks. Maybe even a month? I can't remember now.

 

If you're on Facebook, I highly recommend checking out the Wild Fermentation group. They've posted tons of recipes, and are very helpful if you have questions. They focus on not using whey for fermenting, that's what the "wild" part refers to. Not all their ferments are Whole30 compliant, but many of them are. 

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Fermented onions? Fascinating! I'm warming up to onions slowly - I've always substituted shallots, garlic, and leeks in my cooking. But lately if they're cooked just right I can find them yummy. Since you say that you don't like them raw either, maybe I should give that a go.

 

Thanks for the link to the FB group. I'll check them out.

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That's kind of how I am with the onions, if they're cooked right, great, but raw the flavor is just too strong for me. Fermenting makes the flavor closer to cooked ones. That recipe says leave them at room temp for 5-7 days, but when I tasted them after a week, they were still very much like raw onions. But that FB group I mentioned recommends fermenting things much longer than most of the recipes I've seen around the internet, so I just trusted that it would get better and would taste them every couple of weeks or so. When they got to where I liked them, I called them done and put them in the fridge.

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This site has a lot of great ferment options I've used - you can use her recipe index and choose the ferment category

http://nourishedkitchen.com/

 

Also as I've fermented more I realize most fruit/veggies can somehow be cultured you can often google "vegetable ferment" and get recipes.  At this point after a couple years I've done enough that you realize all the recipes are usually vegetable + spices + brine + culture starter (salt, whey, etc) + some time on the counter.  Then you can start using whatever you have in the fridge.  Googling around and some variety will help you get a handle on this.  My favorite are dilly carrots - the carrots stay super crunchy:

http://www.thenourishinggourmet.com/2010/08/lacto-fermented-dilly-carrot-sticks.html

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I'm a kombucha newbie, but happened to buy a kit for a friend a little while back. He's now on whole30 as well - wouldn't the sugar in it be a problem?

 

Also, looking at the water keifr kit (thanks, great site), and have the same question re: sugar. If made with coconut water, would this be just a sneaky way of working in some sugars? Or does something in the fermentation process render it not a problem?

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I'm a kombucha newbie, but happened to buy a kit for a friend a little while back. He's now on whole30 as well - wouldn't the sugar in it be a problem?

Also, looking at the water keifr kit (thanks, great site), and have the same question re: sugar. If made with coconut water, would this be just a sneaky way of working in some sugars? Or does something in the fermentation process render it not a problem?

Kombucha is fine based on the following: The sugar is "eaten" by the scoby (in the case of kombucha) in the first fermentation. A very small amount remains depending on how long you ferment it for. In secondary fermentation you can add fruit or fruit juices but they mustn't have any sugar in them.
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