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The Benefits of Home-Grown Fermented Goods

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Here’s a word for you! Zymology…. What? Yup, that’s the science of fermentation. Whilst your munching away on your food everyday, your gut is having a little party! In more science terms, your Microflora being the fungi, bacteria and viruses that make up your internal ecosystem, are the busy microbes that balance everything out!

Eating the right range of fermented foods can encourage the right bacteria in your gut. Why is it so important to have a healthy gut? Having a good balance of bacteria can help improve:

  • Digestion

  • Boost immunity

  • Help us stay lean

  • Helps our psychological and emotional well-being

FUN FACT!

Your gut produces more serotonin, which helps regulate your mood, than your brain does.

But let’s not get one thing confused here. Fermented is NOT the same as pickled foods. Not all pickled foods go through the fermentation process, which in turn also means that these pickled foods may not all offer the same health benefits as those that have been fermented. A good example of this is the jarred pickles you find on the non-refrigerated shelf in a supermarket. These have most probably been made using vinegar, and have not gone through a fermentation process. Meaning that they don’t contain the beneficial probiotics for your gut.

So why not know what we are eating and try this at home! Homemade fermented goodness is the best way to maximize the foods’ probiotic cultures. Often these are destroyed in large scale, industrial processes. And what better a time than over this festive season! YUM

(Brown, N. Fermented Foods for a Healthy Gut. October 5th, 2015. https://bit.ly/1MgBv6N)

If you are beginner to the fermentation club, an easy first vegetable to start with is cabbage. Here’s an easy Sauerkraut recipe for you to get you started! Enjoy!

Home-fermented Caraway’s Sauerkraut from Tatu Nutrition and Wellness

Caraway Sauerkraut | Photo Credit: Tatu Bearcroft

Caraway Sauerkraut | Photo Credit: Tatu Bearcroft

ingredients – makes 1L

  • ½ savoy cabbage, finely sliced

  • 1 brown/white onion, finely slices

  • 2 heaped tsp sea salt

  • 2 tsp caraway seeds

  • juice of 2 lemons

  • 1 tbsp. pink pepper corns

Method

In a large mixing bowl add all the ingredients plus a little warm water and put the radio on and settle in to gently massage the cabbage for 10-20 minutes, depending on patience. The cabbage should soften in your hands gradually. Add to your jar of choice and cover with filtered water. Using a wooden spoon/rolling pin or similar push the mixture down to allow any air bubbles to escape, tapping the jar on the worktop can help this process. To keep air from touching the cabbage mixture you can cover with a few pieces of baking paper and top with a heavy weight. Store in a dark cupboard for 2 weeks +, ensuring to check regularly that the mixture is submerged. When you see plenty of bubbles transfer to the fridge and enjoy the juice and sauerkraut with your meals. Repeating this every month or so ensures a ready supply.