Our discovery of the benefits of fermented food began with our daughter contracting a serious case of MRSA (You can read the whole story HERE). Since then we’ve learned how important it is to keep our guts populated with beneficial bacteria (probiotics) and we’ve made a commitment to incorporating probiotic-rich foods into our diet. Purchasing good quality probiotic supplements for the whole family was cost prohibitive for us. Here is what Dr. Mercola says about it:
“Fermented foods are potent chelators (detoxifiers) and contain much higher levels of probiotics than probiotic supplements, making them ideal for optimizing your gut flora.” Read more HERE.
We were thrilled to learn that we could make fermented food ourselves, that would have MORE probiotic content than the expensive supplements we couldn’t afford. We now make regular batches of lacto-fermented vegetables regularly, make yogurt from grass-fed organic milk and brew our own kombucha tea.
I wanted to share a couple of ideas for how to enjoy our favorite fermented vegetable: Sauerkraut.
Besides being delicious – it’s a very important food to be eating during cold and flu season:
“according to Dr. McBride, the amount of bioavailable vitamin C in sauerkraut is 20 times higher than in the same helping of fresh cabbage!
“This is because in the fresh cabbage, vitamin C is bound in the cellulose structure and various other molecules, and our digestive system is just not able to cleave it off and absorb it. Lots of it goes undigested and comes out right out of you. So despite the fact that cabbage may be very rich in vitamin C, a lot of it you will not be able to absorb. But if you fermented that cabbage and made sauerkraut, all the vitamin C becomes bioavailable,” she explains.” (read full article HERE)
We make sauerkraut with green or purple cabbage. You can read how we make ours in THIS link.
We enjoy it all by itself – but I find that adding it to salads is a great way to incorporate it into a ‘normal’ meal. If your kids don’t go for it all by itself, try THIS salad dressing, and add the sauerkraut to a tasty salad (adding bacon or toasted nuts are also helpful to entice little eaters).
Purple sauerkraut and fermented ginger carrots added to a mixed greens salad with cooked garbanzo beans:
Sauerkraut is also great on sandwiches with mustard. Turkey sandwiches, cold sausage sandwiches, or egg sandwiches also go great with it.
Turkey sandwich with sauerkraut and greens on sourdough:
Pile it inside of an avocado! My mom used to fill the hole of an avocado half with my favorite vinegar, then sprinkle salt and pepper on it. I’d spoon it clean – one bite at a time – the tangy vinegar mixing with the healthy avocado oil. This is a similar idea – just add fresh pepper. So good!
One more way we enjoy it is to add it to healthy broths, such as a bowl of chicken soup. Keep in mind that you will first need to wait for your soup to cool down enough to hold your finger in it comfortably. Adding sauerkraut to soup that is too hot will kill the bacteria and it will lose it’s benefit.
I hope you try making this delicious and power-packed superfood!