Monday, 21 April 2014

Fermented Ginger Carrots

We love our fermented veggies at home and it's nice to have a little variation from the standard carrot veggies we always have at home for the kids. The addition of ginger is amazing, the ginger itself becomes a little tangy and sour and is so delicious. My kids stick to the standard carrot version, so I usually make a smaller batch of these just for us oldies.

Fermented Ginger Carrots
Fermented Ginger Carrots
I like to use Body Ecology Veggie Culture Starter with my veggie ferment to ensure they start off with the right bacteria, as my main goal was to get the probiotic goodness into my son. It contains Lactobacillus Plantarum amongst 5 other strains of beneficial bacteria. This particular strain has been shown to assist with various gut issues of which I am sure has assisted my son. (You can leave this out and just add another tablespoon of sea salt or use whey if not dairy free).

For this version, I got a little lazy ;) so I put all the veggies straight into the jars and skipped the massaging step, it still works well with just carrots.

(I would definitely massage cabbage as it produces alot of juices)

Fermented Ginger Carrots



You will need:
  • 1 kg organic carrots
  • 1 green apple
  • 1 large piece of ginger (organic if possible)
  • Juice of 1 lime or lemon
  • 4 large cabbage leaves (or chunks of green cabbage will work too and you can also eat them with the carrots)
  • 2 tbsp sea salt (not table salt)
  • 1 satchet Body Ecology Veggie Culture starter 
  • 1 Litre filtered water
  • 2 1 Litre capacity flip top jars (Fido Jar)
Method:
  • Take out 1 satchet of Body Ecology Culture Starter from the fridge to come to room temperature
  • Clean jars and all utensils with hot scalding water, rinse well and leave to air dry while you follow the next steps
  • Wash the carrots, apples & cabbage leaves or wedges, allow the cabbage to air dry on a clean tea towel
  • Peel and grate the carrots using a food processor or mandolin. I prefer the mandolin. 
  • Place 1/3 of the carrots in a layer in each jar, leave the remaining carrots in a bowl

  • Peel and thinly slice the ginger with a mandolin (makes eating the pieces of ginger more pleasant when it is thin) and place 1/3 of the ginger on top of the carrots
Fermented Ginger Carrots

  • Grate the green apple in the food processor or mandolin and add 1/3 to the jars
Fermented Ginger Carrots recipe

  • Repeat with the remaining carrot, ginger and apple, pressing down firmly each time
  • Dissolve the salt in the filtered water then add the Culture Starter satchet and stir gently to make the brine
  • Add the brine slowly to each jar, little by little, continuing to use your fist to push the carrots down to remove any air bubbles until the carrots are completely submersed in the brine (do not fill the brine right to the top as it will cause a lot of leakage during the fermentation - there should still be a 3cm gap from the brine to the top of the jar)
  • Roll 2 cabbage leaves into logs or using the wedges of cabbage, firmly place them at the top of the jar to keep the carrots pushed down under the brine
How to make Fermented Ginger Carrots
  • Lock the flip top lid and leave to ferment away from direct sunlight. It's good to leave them on a dish to catch any liquids that might escape as the pressure builds up during the fermentation
  • Leave at room temperature to ferment at least 5 days. I like mine at least 7 days. 
  • Hope you enjoy! xx
Have a look under Fermented foods in the Recipe Index for other recipes!

Tips:
  • Store the veggies on the counter out of direct sunlight or in the pantry cupboard until needed, there is no need to store in the fridge, as traditionally, before refrigeration this is how many cultures preserved their veggies. It should keep for months.
  • Only once opened, store the jar in the fridge and always use clean utensils to pick from the jar
  • Using flip top glass jars with rubber seals like the one's pictured, creates an airtight seal so air cannot get in, but allows gas to escape, so it's normal to hear hissing sounds and a good indication the fermentation process is happening
  • There is no need to open and 'burp' the jars as the rubber seals allow the gases to escape, it's best to leave them alone until day 5 at least
  • You should also get no mould with this method, and personally I would throw out any batch with mould just as you would throw out mouldy Kombucha (just my personal preference, I have seen variations where mould is acceptable and to just scrape it off) - I had mould once, and the veggies smelt awful, totally different to the 'fermented' smell. This was because I didn't realise the rim of the glass jar had a chip in it and had allowed some air in so it was no longer airtight
  • Do not stack them on top of each other as this will prevent the air from escaping and can cause the jars to explode
  • The jars may leak so if storing in the pantry, sit them on a dish to catch any liquids.
Eating Tips:
  • If it's your first time, start slowly with about a small tablespoon once a day and gradually increase the amount and frequency
  • It can cause excessive gas and bloating depending on whats going inside your belly if you have too much too early on
  • I like to add fermented veggies to my salads or as a small side to every meal
  • To introduce it to young children, try chopping about a tablespoon very finely and mixing it with half a mashed avocado, squeeze of lemon juice & some salt to make a simple guacamole, this is how my son had his first dose of fermented carrots
  • Don't cook the fermented veggies or add it to hot food as the heat will kill the live bacteria (warm food should be ok if you eat it immediately), you can mix it with any cool food or as a side to your meal


Body Ecology


This post does contain affiliate links to products I use myself. So if you purchase any products here I will earn small commission of which I am grateful for your support. Many thanks! xx

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