Friday, January 30, 2015

Sugarhouse Class; Jan. 29

     I taught a Kefir and Lacto-Fermentation class last night at the Real Foods Market in Sugarhouse in Salt Lake City last night.  What a great experience for me!  I hope that the folks who came learned something useful or meaningful.  There were so many that came I ran out of print-outs and kefirs.  I am sorry about that.  It is hard to judge how many will show up.  Last year when I did this class there, I had 5 maybe 6 people, and last night was over 30.  I planned for 22.  I sold out of milk kefirs and so it will take me a couple weeks to get enough to divide out again.    Thank you all for coming. 

     I use this blog as a back-up for my classes, so class members get some recipes and processes that I don't cover in class.   I wish I could respond to questions or comments that sometimes get posted  here with my blogs but true to my "dinosaur" age, I haven't figured it out yet.  So, to get me to respond to your concerns or questions, please use my email address at the heading of my blog and again here at...

     Lacto-fermentation refers to the common friendly bacteria called lactobacillus which is found in all healthy humans and animals and in rich soil and on fruits and vegetables that are not grown on sterilized fields.  It is found in abundance in raw milk and  whey from cultured raw or pasteurized milk products and it is this whey that can be used to inoculate other foods that have been home-canned or commercially canned.  The advantage is that the good bacteria will consume the sugar or the starch of the canned food over 2-4 days producing lactic acid which tastes very good and is good for the body, and it fills the food with living bacteria that are good for the body....a pro-biotic food, in other words it makes that once "dead" food alive again. 

     The whey is one of the bi-products you get when you separate the caseine (milk solids) from the watery part (whey) of a cultured milk product like kefir or yogurt, using a cloth strainer. Separation will happen naturally with raw milk if left out on the counter for 4-5 days (curds 'n whey or clabber).   The whey has many uses like inoculating canned foods, as liquid in smoothies or baked goods, or "taking down" the sugar in fruit juices  and the milk solids can be flavored and used like sour cream or cream cheese, only it is far better than the commercial kinds.  Making your own dairy products from raw milk or commercial pasteurized milk will save you money and is healthier.  If you have not access to raw milk, look for a low temperature pasteurization and non-homogenized milk in health food stores.  There are dairies that do sell milk like this.  

Monday, January 5, 2015

Fermented Barley Water: A Mild Grain Beverage

This is an old post but I felt to bring it up again as I have been making it the last few weeks and it is something my husband will drink.  (Husbands and children are the ultimate testors for fermented foods and beverages).

We have had the cold virus and flu virus between the two of us, through the holidays like everyone else, but our cases have been very mild when I compare what other people are suffering.  I would like to think it is because of our healthy diets and the pro-biotic foods we eat. 

 And this one beverage has been really helpful especially for my husband who is so picky about my other array of fermented beverages. 

It is easy and very mild tasting but packs a whole lot of health benefits.( benefits are listed in old blog here or you can research the benefits from other blogs online)  

1 ounce of hulled barley (not pearled) needs to have the hull still on
to 1 quart of chlorine-free water
let sit on counter at room temp for 2 days. (sprouting and fermenting taking place)
Pour off the water straining out the barley and reserve both.
Then put the barley in a pot with another quart of water and bring it to a boil, reduce the temperature, cover and gently cook for an hour.  Cool down, strain the barley out and throw out or feed chickens or use in soup.  Combine the reserved water with the cooked (pinkish) water and divide between 2 half gallon jars and add more chlorine-free water.  Cover and let sit on counter at room temperature.  Consume as desired.
Start process over with another ounce of barley water.

For LDS folks   DC 89; 17
Rejuvelac made from wheat also fits this verse.    

Eating Water Kefir Grains

My water kefir grains are working well and they are reproducing well.  But, husband won't drink the kefir water.   I got water kefir grains basicly for him.  I all ready have my kombucha which I love but he won't drink and other fermented beverages so I do not need another one and I cannot keep up with the production.  He won't drink the kefir water because of the gets syrupy.  If I cut the fermentation short to prevent the syrupy, it has too much sweetness/sugar and that is not good for him either.  I have tried to prevent the syrupy result, but no success.  If anyone knows what I am doing wrong, please email me. 

     In the meantime, I will keep them going but only in a pint jar and I am going to eat the extra kefir grains.  They are very different in texture from my milk kefir grains.  They are bland tasting so I put a few in with my breakfast cereal ( pulse for blood type O) and they are good that way, I also blend them with my milk kefir smoothies....kefir, pineapple juice, fresh pineapple, spinach, some berries if I have them, and maybe a piece of ripe banana.  Good that way too. Another pro-biotic food source.   

Wheat Intolerance, Celiac, and Glyphsoate.

Wheat sensitivities are widespread. They say true celiacs are rare but a lot of people claim they cannot eat wheat anymore because of gluten....or the starch....or both.   There are a lot of people trying to figure this out. 

 I have learned from many sources, and have taught that it is a combination of things like;  over hybridization starting in the early 50s (and with that came super gluten and starch that are difficult to digest). More than anything is the industrial "overuse" of wheat and it's byproducts by the consumer always looking for convenience, and then there is the "speed" at which the food industry must turn a raw material into a finished product (which counteracts the ancient, ancestral ways of preparing grains for food) and then the arrival on the market in 1984 of synthetic yeasts or quick-rise yeasts that were designed to work fast. We also have the possibility that the wheat on the market now is GMO wheat.  The industry loudly denounce this but I don't know.
If all this were not bad enough, it is now being reported that a recent farming practice(within the last 18-15 years or so) that is thought to be "harmless" is really turning out to be one more "crime against nature".  It is glyphosate. 

 Glyphosate is a  round-up herbicide that is sprayed on the mature wheat plants to kill them and of course any other weeds in the field.  As the wheat plants die, they quickly produce a few more grains of wheat....a plant's defense.  Which is a bonus for the farmer as it produces a greater crop yield....more money.  But, and this is a big "But"....this poison gets into the wheat kernels themselves, not just the bran but into the endosperm.  Could this poison be part of the combination mix that is making people sick? 

 Read this link.  This is the third article I've seen lately implicating glyphosate.

     If this is true, then modern wheat could very easily be harmful to humanity.  The industry doesn't care, until the demand for wheat goes down and with it their profits. This article does ask the question; "can this chemical poison be ameliorated?"  It doesn't say.  And I don't know either.  

     What I have decided to do is to keep the wheat I have purchased for storage....good or bad, old or new.  I believe the answer to this question will come forth in the future when our lives depend on wheat because that is all that we will have to eat.  I also believe that prayer over this food when we have to depend on it for survival, will take care of the damage done to it and it will be made useful and even healthful for human consumption.  

     In the meantime, I will continue to grind my wheat and other grains, sprout my wheat and make rejuvelac and continue to make sourdough bread, muffins, crackers and pancakes and the occasional dessert. And of course, pray over all the food I serve.  But will not give up on "wheat for man".  Perhaps sprouting and sourdough natural yeasts can diminish the poison, I don't know yet, but I do know there will be ways to overcome the problems. I will encourage people with wheat sensitivities to keep their stored wheat and purchase more if needed... looking for organic suppliers. 

 Such as "Wheat Montana" brand flours.  They go to great lengths to test their wheat to prove it chemical free.   There are other growers I'm sure and with some research they can be found.