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Tag Archives: Fermentation

Something Else You Can Ferment

I’ve extolled the virtues of fermented foods on many occasion due to their beneficial enzymes that help our digestive systems function better. There are various foods that are readily available in fermented form and all cultures have them since in days gone by, it was an important process because there was no refrigeration and fermented foods keep longer. Many vegetables like in the German version, sauerkraut and the Korean version Kim Chee are fermentable. There are types of dill pickles that are fermented. Not all though so read your labels. Milk is fermentable into yogurt and kefir. Soy is fermented into Miso and Tempeh. BUT something you might not be aware of is that you can ferment nuts and seeds.

I discovered a product from a company called Spread Em. They make a variety of very nice nut cheeses that are fermented. I was a bit taken aback by the price tag of $9.00 for a small container but I guess when you consider the price of nuts, it’s understandable. The kind I bought was garlic and chive cashew cheese spread. So the idea is that it’s sort of like a cream cheese but no dairy and the added benefit of being fermented. I fell in love with it and then of course my mind went to making my own. My first batch turned out great and it made quite a lot. I love it spread on my raw dehydrated (no grain or gluten) flat bread with avocado, red onion and tomato:) Yummy!!! I’ll post another flatbread recipe here too but there’s a link for you to a sprouted buckwheat flat bread recipe.

So I guess you want to know how to make it now?? It’s easy.

Just so you know that you can use many kinds of nuts and seeds but make sure they are soaked not only because it’s required for them to ferment but to remove phytates. Examples are Macadamia, pine nuts, brazil nuts, almonds, walnuts, pecans, pumpkin seeds etc.

In this recipe I used cashews and sunflower seeds but feel free to interchange and make this your own recipe.

Fermented cheese

Cashew-Sunflower Fermented Nut Cheese PRINT

1 1/2 cups raw cashews, soak in filtered water 4 hours

1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds, soak 4 hours

1/2 cup of fermented vegetables like sauerkraut-get a good quality organic brand

2 T extra virgin coconut oil or olive oil

1 garlic clove

1 T nutritional yeast

1 T fresh squeezed lemon juice

1/2 tsp himalayan pink salt or sea salt

You can flavour this up more with fresh parsely, basil, dill or other herbs of your choosing to taste. Add fresh ground black pepper, capers, finely chopped olives, green onion or chives and so on. Other options…sesame oil, coconut aminos, miso, fresh ginger and the list goes on.

Toss everything in the Vitamix high speed blender (you can use a food processor but it won’t get as fine a texture). Add a very small amount of filtered water if you need to thin it a touch. Blend til smooth. Have ready sterilized jars and add your mixture to the jars but fill only 1/2 full  so it can expand while fermenting. Put lids on loosely. Let sit in a warm place for 1 1/2 days then refrigerate. It should keep a week to 10 days.

Herb and Onion Flatbread PRINT

1/3 c sundried tomatoes soaked in hot water for 10 mins.

1/3 c and 1/2 c golden flax seeds, do not soak

1/3 c pecans or walnuts, do not soak

1 1/4 c sunflower seeds, do not soak

3 medium zucchini, yellow or green, keep skin on

2 cloves garlic

1/2 red onion

1/3 c fresh basil

3/4 tsp dried oregano

3/4 tsp freshly ground pepper

3/4 tsp himalayan pink salt or sea salt

Line your dehydrator tray with a non stick paraflex sheet.

Grind 1/3 cup flax seeds.

Place nuts and sunflower seeds in food processor and grind. Place them in a bowl.

Shred two zucchini using shredding blade in the food processor. Add them to the bowel with nuts.

Using the blade in food processor, process third zucchini and all the rest of the ingredients except the whole flax then add to the nut bowl along with whole flax.

Mix well. Spread evenly over the lined dehydrator tray and score into rectangles, dehydrate for 12 hours then flip removing the liner. Dehydrate another 4 to 6 hours until crisp. If you like it extra thin, use two trays.

 

 

 

 

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Fermented Foods-A Good Thing!

To Market, To Market

I lucked out one day when I was buying dill cukes. Upon leaving the house I swore I would not be doing any more canning as my feet were ready to fall off by the time I’d done 25 jars of tomatoes and 20 jars of pickled beets. However, when I got to the farmer’s market, one of the vendors was selling organic dill cukes. As I somewhat begrudgingly filled my bag with cukes, a gentleman asked me if I would be pickling them. I said, “Yes,” and sighed as I realized I’d be up until midnight again. He said he had a better way of doing them. Of course I asked HOW?

Fermentation ~ “A Good Thing!”

So why are fermented foods good for us? Every culture has some form of fermentation in their repertoire. Yogurt, Kefir, Tempeh, Sauerkraut, Kim Chi, Fish Sauce, Tamari and so on…

It is a way to get a longer sImagehelf life from the food but mainly it provides enzymes that aid our digestion which in turn allows for better assimilation of nutrients. Do not confuse pickling with fermenting. Most pickles you buy are done with white vinegar (a petroleum product). Some however, are fermented but read the label carefully. By the way, if you are pickling with vinegar, there is now white vinegar on the market that is NOT a petroleum product

Here’s the recipe. And guess what? It only took me half an hour to do and it’s healthier than using white vinegar regardless of whether it is the non-petroleum type or not. These pickles are actually fermented…and as Martha Stewart would say, “That’s a good thing!” Fermented foods have enzymes that help our digestion.

Kim Chee-A Korean Staple

Recipes

Fermented Cucumbers (Dill Pickles)

Kim Chee

 

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