Thursday, July 24, 2014

Lacto Fermentation; Making canned food into Living Food

     Lacto fermentation means a fermenting process that uses lactobacillus bacteria found in milk.  Lactation, ( milk making) lactose (milk sugar), lactase ( enzyme) and lactic acid 
(a bio acid made in the first stage of fermenting process) are all terms used when talking about fermenting.  However, lactobacillus which is found in raw milk (from healthy animals that also have lots of lactobacillus in their stomachs), also is found in good garden soil and so they are on fresh vegetables from that garden and are also found inside healthy people
     Lactobacillus are the healthy, necessary bacteria that are needed in the gut for good health.   That's why raw milk and cheese are much better for you than pasteurized milk and cheese, even those products made with pasteurized milk where they inoculate them with pro-biotics and lots of sugar.  That's why fermented vegetables are so much better for you than canned or frozen vegetables. "Living" foods with live friendly bacteria are going to boost your health and vitality. 
     Here is the exciting news, you can take those home canned or commercially canned foods and by adding whey from raw milk yogurt or kefir or raw clabber, you can make pasteurized, sterile foods "living" again and therefore much more nutritious and beneficial.  Following are a few suggestions how to lacto-ferment some common, canned foods.

You will need a steady supply of whey.  You get whey when milk separates.  Letting raw milk sit out, covered, at room temper for 2- 4 days will separate the whey from the caseine.  You can also take some plain yogurt or kefir and separate the whey using a cloth.  Pictured is my polyester cloth that does the job really well and cleans up fast and can be used over and over.   I sell these 
cloths at my classes or from home if you email me.  

The first recipe I would share with you is a Tuscan white bean dip.

1 can White beans, Great Northern or cannelloni beans, drained
3-4 med. garlic cloves
2 TBS virgin olive oil
2 TBS whey
5-6 fresh basil leaves or 1 tsp. dried basil
Real Salt to taste
Process all in food processor til smooth.  Scrape out into a bowl and cover with plastic lid and let ferment for 2-3 days.  The lactobacillus will consume the starches and sugars in the beans creating lactic acid which will make the bean dip taste even better than the regular lemon juice the original recipe called for and you will have living pro-biotics in your food.

Next recipe is Salsa

1 pint of home canned salsa or commercially prepared salsa and add 2 TBS of whey.  Cover and let set at room temp. for 3-4 days to ferment.  The lactobacillus in the whey will consume the sugars in the tomatoes and other vegetables and procude lactic acid which will add a "kick" to the salsa and add living pro-biotics to your food.  

Fruit Juice

Take a quart of home canned fruit juice or commercially canned juice and add 1/4 cup whey to it.  Most fruit juice is too sweet for me anymore so I let the lactobacillus microbes consume some of that sugar for me and leave me the lactic acid which is much better nutritionally.  Let the juice with whey, set for 2-3 days and taste. If you keep the lid tight, it will build up some carbon dioxide which makes it a little fizzy. Put into fridge when it tastes right for you.  I also use some of my  kombucha  in fruit juice to take down the sugar.  



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