Traditional Kitchen Tips to Boost the Nutrition of Your Food
Just in time to share with you one of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes. Now that you’ve taken the efforts to buy nutritious foods with buying tips provided in Part I, Part II, Part III, and Part IV the last thing you want to do is destroy the nutrients when preparing them.
Last months blog listed kitchen techniques to avoid, that destroys food nutrients and listed alternate options. Today you’ll read of a simple and fast traditional kitchen technique (with recipe) that increases the nutritional value of your food known as, fermentation (aka culturing).
Modern Day Commercial Food Preservation
- Is fermenting foods new?
- How come I never heard of fermentation?
- Why can’t I find fermented foods in the grocery stores?
Short answers to these questions
- According to Wikipedia fermentation dates back to 7000 BC used to preserve foods
- Large scale industrial/commercial food industry has taken over
- It’s alive food so shelf life is shorter
- It’s alive food so the looks and taste might slightly alter from batch to batch (unlike chemical derived food)
- Less profits, the body is satisfied when it eats nourishing real foods, many of today’s processed foods use chemicals that triggers the brain/body to want more
How are commercial foods preserved today?
Pasteurization heats foods at high temperatures which kills bad bacteria. However, it also kills beneficial bacteria, destroys vitamins, amino acids, enzymes, minerals and proteins. (Side note: this wreaks havoc on your health)
Chemicals/non-nutritive ingredients are added to preserve foods that make processed foods taste better. (examples: distilled vinegar, heated salt, high fructose corn syrup, sodium benzoate, natural flavors aka MSG, polysorbate 80, sodium bisulfite)
Here’s an example of an American favorite food condiment that started off as a fermented food full of nutritional benefits and turned into a sugar and chemical derived monster. Can you guess?…… Answer: Ketchup One of my favorite foods that I ended up avoiding for years learning of how its currently made until I discovered the beauty of fermentation I can now enjoy my ketchup again
Ketchup originally was a Chinese derived fish brine. Fish brine provides beneficial lactic acid to ferment (aka breakdown) foods. At a later time, Americans added tomatoes turning it into fermented tomato ketchup. Today’s commercial food production of “Ketchup” is far from the original recipe. Outside of tomatoes (likely grown with toxic pesticides), the ketchup you buy at grocery stores primarily consists of high fructose corn syrup. It has become a product laden with sugar, pesticide chemicals and then packaged in a plastic bottle filled with more chemicals.
Here is a tasty and simple way to make homemade ketchup. I would alter it with the following: exchange store canned tomatoes for garden fresh or home canned tomatoes, use 2 Tablespoons of Premier Tomato Concentrate to increase the beneficial nutrient of lycopene and a richer tomato flavor.
History of Fermented Foods
Ferment means “to boil”; when fermentation occurs, beneficial microorganisms break down food, and produce beneficial acid and/or alcohol
Nearly every culture of the world has fermented foods in its history since B.C.
- Sauerkraut = China
- Cheese = Sumria
- Sausage = Rome
- Sake = Japan
- Cider/Beers = N. Europe
The Nutritional Boost of Fermentation
- Creates more nutritious and digestible foods (many people who can’t eat pasteurized dairy have no issues with fermented dairy)
- Increases the level and absorption ability of vitamins, minerals, and enzymes even beyond its raw state, such as Vitamins B(s), C, K2, carotene and supplies digestive enzymes
- Produces beneficial acids in the gut
- Neutralizes problematic nutrients of the food such as tannins, sugars, oxalic acid, phytoestrogens, aflatoxins
- Kills cravings for sweets
- Contains many good strains of bacteria (probiotics). Pro biotics (literal translation “for life”)
- Probiotics keep the unhealthy bacteria at bay in the gut
- Protects the gut from erosion by virus, fungus, bacteria, pathogen, and pulls toxins out of the gut
- Probiotics produce numerous helpful enzymes including and anti-carcinogenic substances
- Anti biotics (literal translation “against life”)
- A single round of antibiotics creates an imbalance of good to bad bacteria ratio in the gut (supposed to be 85/15). This alteration, many times allows harmful micro-organisms to have free range and wreak havoc on the body creating health symptoms such as (bloating, gas, indigestion, parasite, food allergies, arthritis, fibromyalgia, cancer etc)
Fermentation: Benefits Beyond Nutrition
- Tastes delicious
- Incredibly simple
- Not time consuming
- The good bacteria keeps vegetables and fruits in a state of perfect preservation (allowing foods to last from days to months)
- Eating a 1 – 2 Tbs a few times a day with your main meals can have huge benefits to gut health!
What Can Be Fermented?
Vegetables Fruit Dairy Juice Water Tea Beans Grain Seafood Meats Beverages
The possibilities are endless!
How to Ferment
To start you off, below is a basic and my favorite Thanksgiving recipe that you can try in a small batch.
New things in the kitchen can be scary and many times is easier to learn with a visual experience. With that being said, I’m excited to announce, February 2016 YOU ARE INVITED to experience the process of food fermentation and taste the rewards in a Food Fermentation Class that will be held in partnership with Peggy and Meg of the Curry girls Kitchen located in Manhattan Beach, CA. If you are interested in participating in a Food Fermentation Class email email@example.com and you’ll receive details January, 2016.
Keep In mind
Cheap foods are cheap in the short run, but loss of income or time with family & friends due to illness cant even be quantified. God has designed an amazing human body that can endure a lot (harmful chemicals, stress, surgeries, injuries, exercise etc..) but giving it the support it needs, the potential of optimal health is simply astonishing.
- First step; shift your thinking decide that Your health is #1
- Be patient with change
- Baby steps for transition one at a time
Your Nutritional Boost Recipe
Cranberry-Orange-Apple Relish by Wardeh Harmon “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Fermenting Foods” p 98.
1 organic orange (peeled, quartered)
1 organic apple (any type, my preference is fuji) cored & quartered
1/2 cup fresh cranberries
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons unheated Premier Unheated Canadian Gold Honey
1 teaspoon Premier Air-Dried Pink Salt
1/8 cup liquid whey or fresh squeezed lemon juice or Premier Raw Unfilitered Apple Cider Vinegar
combine orange, apple, cranberries, cinnamon, honey, salt and whey in a food processor
- PULSE to chop (do not puree)
- transfer to fermenting jar (1 quart mason jar) pack down to leave at least 1” inch below jar rim. Cover with air tight lid
- leave at room temperatures 12 – 48 hours (note open lid ½ way through day 1 & 2 to allow it release pressure, then retighten lid)
- transfer to cool storage will last for few weeks
Side Note 1: fermentation will slow but continue even in fridge. As fruit ferements its alcohol content tends to increase)
Side Note 2: Eating fermented foods, will pull toxins out of the gut (detoxify, aka die-off). To eliminate the potential to experiencing detoxification symptoms (bloating, gas headache), if you are new to eating fermented foods, begin eating 1 Tablespoon/day and then over next 2 weeks increase your daily intake by 1 Tablespoon per week.
As a QRA & Wellness Practitioner, a primary focus with the clients is providing a step by step process in building a nutrient dense daily diet along with supplying recipes and teaching how to be in the kitchen efficiently and effectively. If you are seeking additional assistance to renew your diet and/or your family’s for health, weight loss, and/or body type, to inquire about an appointment please click here or call 310.798.7600.
To Great Health & Wellness
Certified QRA & Wellness Practitioner
PS We love to hear from you, questions, recipe sharing, recipe feedback simply email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
thenourishingcook.com The Nourishing Traditions Cookbook for Children Suzanne Gross and Sally Fallon Morell.
articles.mercola.com/fermented-foods.aspx. Dr. Jensen, Bernard, “Foods That Heal” and Donna Gates “The Body Ecology Diet”
bodyecology.com. Fallon, Sally, Mary G. Enig Nourishing Traditions; NewTrends Pub. (1999) – Paperback – 674 pages – ISBN 0967089735
doctor-natasha.com/dr-natasha.php. “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Fermenting Foods” Wardeh Harmon
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