Breakfast of Champions

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No - No you people of the 70's and 80's (myself included), it is not Wheaties!

So what is this concoction on the plate and in the bowl?

  • Local, pasture raised eggs fried to the perfect, "still liquid" yolk state,
  • Wild leeks chopped and placed on top, and
  • Local, pasture-raised, goat milk cheese, slightly melted, on top...  and in the bowl?
  • Kraut made from Kent Family Farm's root veggies, cabbage, and burdock with added: fresh wild leeks from around the corner and up the hill; then I added dandelion greens, nettle tops*, and chives from the front yard.

Yummy, cell nourishing way to start the day!

*The nettle tops were raw, chopped very finely.  Yes, nettles will leave the characteristic "sting" on the tongue and back of the throat... but it is very mild, barely noticeable!

Stinging nettles have been used for urtication. Urtication means flailing the affected joints with nettles for the relief of arthritis and like conditions.  So eating raw is a 'lil self tongue and throat therapy!  Who would want arthritis of throat and tongue?

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I Popped the Cranberry of Fermentation...

first sauerkraut

I Popped the Cranberry of Fermentation

and

Threw in an Apple or Two

That's correct, my first fermentation of veggies!  Sure I have made yogurt, cheeses, and other fermented foods but this was my first attempt making "kraut."  Isn't the deep pink color pretty?!

I have eaten plenty of fermented veggies over the years and I figured it was time to stop being lazy in the kitchen and start making my own.

Now I confess, I did not follow a recipe.  I prefer to do things my way, figure it out as I go sort of method.  Those who know me are not shocked by this confession of being a "do it my way" kind of girl.

I put myself into a shredding frenzy with my loyal kitchen friend, the metal cheese grater! I grated:  beets, carrots, celeriac, turnip, rutabaga, cabbage, and apples.  Then I chopped up frozen cranberries.  All the goodies, except the apples, were from the Kent Family Growers.  Thanks Dan & Megan for contributing to my kitchen frenzy!

prepping kraut

When I finished grating I had a huge stainless steel bowl of grated veggies.  I added 3 tablespoons of unrefined, Celtic sea salt and got to kneading the colorful mess.  I mixed and kneaded with my hands for 10 to 15 minutes and then let it sit for 1 1/2 hours.

At this point I decided to read a recipe to see how I was doing winging it in the kitchen.  Well, I read to salt the cabbage and let it sit before adding the other veggies.  Whoops, too late for that.  No sense crying over spilled milk.  I got in gear, cleaned the table of renegade shredded veggie pieces and did up the dinner dishes.

Then I:

1.  stuffed the salted, grated veggies into my new German fermentation crock,

2.  made certain the liquid covered the veggies,

3.  placed my whole cabbage leaves on top,

4.  set the clay weights in place,

5.  put the lid on,

6.  and added water to the trough around the lid.  This water must be kept in the trough the whole fermentation period.  I was on this water "watch" like a Mom watching her babe!

DONE, finished!  Now I just had to wait patiently for 8 days to see if my method of doing things created anything tasty and edible!

28 Days Later 

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OK, another confession:  I actually waited the full 28 days, no peaking!  That's more than I can say for Christmas presents as a kid. Yeah, sorry Mom, nothing you can do about it now.  'Ya should have hid them better.  I only peaked at one per year; honest.

So, back to the root veggie kraut.... It turned out fabulously.  Pretty pink, crisp, and tasty. The longer ferment time allows for growth of full spectrum gut microbes. You want this to happen!

My Favorite Way to Eat It?

Well, right out of the jar... but, when I am feeling like putting a bit more effort into the meal or snack I add grated, raw slaw and goat or sheep milk feta to the pile of veggies.  Then I top with lots of yummy, raw, organic walnuts and feast away!

This has to be the nectar of the Gods and Goddesses!  If not, I will ferment my hat and eat it!

Interested in learning to ferment?

Add your name to the Local Living Venture's mailing list.  They just held a fermentation class on Thursday, January 30th.  Why am I taunting and teasing with a class that is now over?   Because it was full and had a waiting list!  This is a good sign that it WILL be offered again.  Go ahead, sign up for their email notifications,  and get notified when all sorts of fun, food classes are being taught!

From their website, http://www.sustainablelivingproject.net/

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Be well, eat good food, have fun, & love ... Paula

Gut Bugs for Lunch

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Gut Bugs are Essential for Whole Body Health

We hear it all the time, gut microbes are essential for the health and healing of the whole body, not to mention prevention of everything from colon issues to depression and cancer.  Natural medicine has encouraged fermented foods forever, mainstream medicine is finally catching on!

Although the mainstream medical recommendation is for a fecal transplant?? Are they serious?  Transplanting someone else's poop into my colon.  Sounds like fun...  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fecal_bacteriotherapy

How about eating 100% whole foods to heal current problems and to prevent further health issues AND try eating raw, fermented foods to replenish the gut bacteria?

Science is "proving" that having healthy microbes in your gut is what keeps the immune, nervous, gastro-intestinal, and skin healthy.  Gut health is an indication of complete body health, right down to each individual body cell. (It is that body cell health thing again.  If you have sat through one of my whole food healing workshops, you hear about healing your body cells!)

Whole foods are full of fiber and nutrients that feed the gut bugs you want to proliferate in your gut.  Feeding the gut bugs healthy, whole foods keeps you healthy.  A fine example of a  mutualistic relationship between humans and bacteria.

Above is a picture of a recent lunch I made for myself:

1.  My beloved beets, grated raw, from the Kent Family Growers,

2.  Topped with Hawthorne Valley Raw Sauerkraut, Nature's Storehouse in Canton carries this,

(Wild Brine Dill and Garlic Sauerkraut Salad from the Potsdam Food Coop is a tasty choice as well!)

3.  I then topped it with raw sunflower seeds, walnuts, and pumpkin seeds (yeah, I forgot them in the picture!),

4.  Raw, Fermented, Wild Brine pickles and pickled garlic from the Potsdam Coop,

5.  Local, full fat yogurt from Prosper's Farmstead Creamery, North Lawrence, NY.

End results:

Yummy lunch full of fiber to feed the gut microbes AND the sauerkraut, pickles, and yogurt are loaded with good, gut building bacteria to replenish mine.  (Remember, fermented pickles and sauerkraut must be raw.  If you heat can it after fermenting to store on the shelves, you are killing the gut microbes.)

Do your gut and whole body health (Your body cells; it is the body cell thing again!) a favor:  Eat good gut bugs for lunch!

Gut Health At Nature's Storehouse

Good Gut Health Food

Nature's Storehouse, in Canton, stocks Deep Root Raw Sauerkraut. Raw means the micro-organisms that are good for your gut are still alive! This is akin to "live active cultures" found in good yogurt.

http://www.natures-storehouse.com/   You can buy Deep Root sauerkraut in the store, right out of the cooler.

Nature's Storehouse hosts a Whole Share buy club option:  http://www.wholeshare.com/join/1094    Through Whole Share, you can order Real Pickles and BAO Raw Slaw brands of raw sauerkraut.  Both companies have other varieties of raw, fermented vegetables and are north-eastern companies!

Deep Root makes a red cabbage kraut and beet/carrot fermented vegetable options.  They are all very yummy and very gut healthy.  Deep Root is not available through the Whole Share but is available through special ordering at Nature's Storehouse.

Your choice, your gut health!

Be well, eat well, glow with good health!  Paula

BAO Raw Slaw