Lacto Pickle Workshops–Coming soon!

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Check back here for pickle workshops…soon to be schedule for the fall!  I can’t wait to make lacto-fermented vegetables with you in the future.  Until then, if you are feeling adventurous, check out this list of great recipes on-line:

http://girlmeetsnourishment.com/56-fermented-recipes/

Or get Sandor Katz’ book, Wild Fermentation and give some of his recipes a whirl.

Or Check out Sally Falon’s book, Nourishing Traditions, for some very simple lacto pickle recipes.

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Summer Squash Pickles

 

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Lacto-fermented vegetables (made using a simple brine instead of vinegar) 
are delicious, easy to make and healthy too!

Ingredients and supplies:

  • 1 or 2 quart sized (or larger) glass jars with lids
  • Brine made from 2-3 T. salt dissolved in 1 quart of non-chlorinated water
  • 2-3 Summer squash or zucchini, cut into slices, chunks or spears
  • 3-4 cloves fresh garlic
  • a few fresh grape leaves (tannins help keep veggies crisp)
  • fresh coriander, (with flowers or seeds welcome)
  • optional: 1 T. dried coriander seeds and 1 cinnamon stick
  • other options include:

~4 T. whey (helps to get the lacto-fermentation process started)

~Use other fresh herbs such as basil, rosemary or dill

~Use other dried spices such as black pepper corns, mustard seed,

dill seed, cloves, whole allspice, red pepper flakes, cloves, etc.

In a clean, quart sized (or bigger) jar with a tight-fitting lid, place some fresh herbs, a clove of garlic and a grape leave.  Pack in the squash until jar is half full.  Put in another layer of seasonings and a grape leaf and fill with more squash until top of vegetables are a little more than an inch from the top of the jar.  Put in the last of the seasonings and top with a grape leaf tucked down around vegetables.  If using whey, add to jar.

Pour in brine until veggies are covered (this is key), and liquid is at least one inch from top of jar.  Put lid on securely and label or mark the date somewhere so you remember when you started your pickles.  Leave on the counter out of direct sun for three days.  After this time, the brine should be nice and cloudy with lots of bubbles.  Taste your pickles and if they’re sour enough, put them in the fridge and enjoy!

If you want a little more kick, feel free to leave them on the counter for as long as a week (if it’s not too hot. Ideal temp is low 70s), making sure to “burp” the jar every day or two to release the pressure from fermentation.  I find that 3-5 days is plenty in the summertime.  In cooler temperatures, the fermentation process is slower, and pickles can take up to a month or two to get nice and sour.

Lily K. Morris is a writer, artist, certified health practitioner and healing foods specialist, among other things. She loves to wander the woods and fields of Chappy in search of beauty, inspiration and nourishment. Find out more about making cultured and lacto-fermented veggies on her blog at http://www.waltzingwithwellness.com.

Independence Day Salad

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Red, White and Blue… 

by Lily K. Morris

Created for the annual Wasque Farm Fourth of July gathering on Chappaquiddick.  What a treat to be able to use all local veggies and berries.  Looking forward to Chappy dairy one day soon… This recipe makes a big, colorful potluck-sized bowl of salad.

Salad:

1 head red leaf lettuce (Slip Away Farm)

1 head speckled romaine lettuce (Slip Away)

1-2 cups wild blueberries–fresh or frozen (Wasque low bush)

3-4 medium Chioggia beets, washed and shredded (Slip Away)

Handful of red radishes, sliced (Slip Away)

Handful of sorrel and arugula, chopped in ribbons (Over the Hill Farm)

Fresh herbs (dill, parsley, mint) roughly chopped (Over the Hill Farm)

One cup ruby kraut, roughly chopped (Fleur de Lis Farm)

1 lb. (or less) goat cheese or feta, crumbled (someday from Fleur de Lis Farm…)

 Optional additions/substitutions: sliced strawberries, sliced hakari turnips (instead of the cheese for a dairy-free salad)

Dressing:

soak 1/2 minced shallot in 3-4 tablespoons organic balsamic vinegar

whisk in one T. organic Dijon mustard

a few pinches of sea salt and a few grinds of black pepper

a drizzle of local honey

a splash of ruby kraut juice

whisk in extra virgin olive oil…to taste and emulsify.  At least 1/4 – 1/2 cup.

Directions: Wash all veggies well.  Spin lettuce, greens and herbs dry in a salad spinner or towel.  Combine salad ingredients in a big bowl.  Blueberries can be added frozen if the salad will sit for a bit before serving–they will thaw quickly.  Toss salad with dressing just before serving.  Enjoy!

Veggies with some culture

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Since I have started playing around with lacto-fermentation, I have discovered some really fun resources on the web–other folks who seem to be fermentation obsessed too!  So fun.

Here’s a list of great reasons to eat lacto-fermented foods:

8 Reasons to Eat Fermented Foods.

You can also check out some of my recipes here:

Killer Kraut

Chappy kimchi

Chappy Kimchi

lacto-fermented local kimchi

lacto-fermented local kimchi

Chappy Kimchi – a spicy, local pickle.

by Lily K. Morris for Slip Away Farm’s CSA

 Not sure what to do with Napa cabbage?   Try out this delicious, healthy, lacto-fermented Korean pickle.   You can make it as mild or as spicy as you like, and you may be surprised at how much the spice mellows during fermentation.

Lacto-fermented veggies like this kimchi, or homemade sauerkraut, are a wonderful way to increase the beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract.  Including lacto-fermented veggies as a part of your daily diet may contribute to better digestion and increased energy and overall well-being.  Start off by eating a small amount daily (a spoonful or two) so as to let your digestion get used to this beneficial food.  If it doesn’t taste good to you, and you don’t feel great after eating it for a couple of days, listen to your body–your system may not need or want it right now.

Recipe:

Making kimchi is a bit of a process.  It’s best to read through the recipe so you have an idea for the timing.  Prep is a couple of hours, split.  Kimchi is ready in about a week.

Fresh local veggies:

Slip Away Farm napa cabbage or bok choi, roughly chopped ~ one head

Slip Away Farm radishes, sliced thinly ~ one bunch

Slip Away Farm kohlrabi, sliced thinly ~ one bunch

*Veggies can be any combination of the ones listed, or any other fresh, fleshy vegetable you want to try.  Try snow peas, cauliflower, turnip, etc. Experiment to find the combination you like best!

Local alliums for spice paste:

Slip Away Farm green garlic ~ two small bulbs with tender portion of stalks (or 3-4 large cloves)

Chappaquiddick Organic chives and garlic chives  ~ a handful

Slip Away Farm scallions or onion ~ one bunch or one medium

Optional: 3 T grated fresh ginger, 3 or more hot peppers, minced, 1 sweet red pepper, grated

*Spice mix can be any combination of spicy veggies. A more traditional kimchi uses grated ginger and fresh hot pepper or chili paste; though not yet available locally this season they add a nice, full flavor.  It’s ok to have a lot of spice paste.

Make brine: dissolve 1 tablespoon sea or kosher salt, for each cup of non-chlorinated water.  Make about 4 cups to start, and mix a cup at a time if you need more.

Prepare veggies: Wash veggies and roughly chop or slice as directed, except for spice paste ingredients.  Place veggies in bowl and cover with about 4 cups brine.  Place a plate with a weight on top; mix up more brine if needed to keep veggies fully submerged. Soak for at least four hours. Once veggies are limp, drain, reserving brine.  Veggies should taste pleasantly salty. Rinse briefly if they are too salty.

Once veggies are drained, mince or grate the ingredients for the spice paste. Add spice paste to veggies and mix well.  Transfer veggies into quart-sized mason jar, packing well after every few handfuls to encourage release of juices.  (use gloves for this step if you have sensitive skin.)  When veggies are about two inches from top of jar, cover with a whole cabbage leaf and tuck in to make sure all veggies are covered with liquid. Add a bit of reserved brine if needed to bring liquid above veggies–keeping liquid about an inch from top of jar.  Use an 8 oz glass ball jar full of water, or a zip-loc bag full of brine (must be salty in case it leaks) to weigh down veggies.  Liquid should rise up around weight to form a seal and keep veggies completely covered with liquid.  Cover with a light dish towel or cloth to keep out dust and place on a plate for overflow.  

Let ferment at room temperature, around 70° for about a week, or until done, and then transfer to fridge.  Start tasting after 3 days–pull whole leaf aside and use clean fingers or a fork to grab a bit to try, then tuck leaf back in and replace weight.  Kimchi is done when it has a ripe, sour, spicy and satisfying flavor.   Spice will mellow as it ferments, and it will continue to slowly ripen in fridge.   Speed of fermentation will depend on air temperature and can differ with each batch.  Kimchi will keep for at least a few months in the fridge. A bit of “bloom” or foam on the top of the liquid is normal and can be skimmed off.  If you find your veggies getting slimy, creamy, or brown, throw out the batch and start again.  If it smells good and tastes good, it is most likely safe to eat.

Use extra brined veggies for a delicious, simple sauté. Rinse briefly under cold water to mellow saltiness.  Heat one T. coconut oil or ghee or your favorite cooking oil in a sauté pan or skillet over med-high heat and add veggies. Cook, stirring frequently, just until veggies are tender and wilted. If the veggies are fresh, they will be delicious just like this.  You can also try adding some chopped fresh cilantro, lime juice, grated ginger and mirin (a sweet rice wine).

Kimchi images:

Check out these resources for more information and inspiration:

Wild Fermentation by Sandor Katz

Nourishing Traditions by Sally Falon

http://thebrinery.com/

Lily taking time to enjoy the flowers...

Lily K. Morris

Lily K. Morris is a writer, artist, certified health practitioner and healing foods specialist, among other things. She loves to wander the woods and fields of Chappy in search of beauty, inspiration and nourishment. Find her at lilykmorris[@]gmail.com.

Napa Cabbage & Kohlrabi Salad with Sesame-Miso dressing

Napa Cabbage & Kohlrabi Salad with Sesame-Miso dressing

inspiration from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook by Deb Perelman

Salad:

Slip Away Farm napa cabbage, thoroughly washed and sliced into thin ribbons

Slip Away Farm purple kohlrabi, quartered and very thinly sliced

Slip Away Farm snap peas, roughly chopped–blanch briefly in salted water for bright color

Slip Away Farm scallions, thinly sliced

other options: radish, hakari turnips, russian kale, carrots

Dressing:

blend together:

1 T. grated or minced fresh ginger

1 large garlic clove, minced

2-3 T. light miso

1-2 T. freshly ground, roasted sesame seeds or tahini paste

2 T. toasted sesame oil

1 T. maple syrup or honey

2 T. walnut or extra virgin olive oil

3-4 T. rice vinegar

juice from 1 lime

1-2 T. cold water to thin dressing if desired

Garnish:

roughly chopped cilantro and mint

toasted sesame seeds

by Lily K. Morris 6/19/2013

not-too-nutty Nut Milk

lily having tea

Until recently I have been rather skeptical of the need for nut milk.  The mass-produced, processed kind in a box or carton often has all sorts of other additives to thicken or preserve it and I would just as soon avoid all that. I hadn’t ever tried making my own, though, and now that I have, I am rather a fan of the stuff.

We have been drinking organic, raw cow’s milk for the last couple of years and I am quite happy with that most of the time.  In the beginning of the new year–2013–I am planning to eat ‘clean” again for awhile, which for me means no grains, added sugar/sweetener and no dairy.  I quite enjoy my tea in the winter time, so I have been feeling around for some milk alternatives that I feel comfortable with.  Coconut milk works quite well (I try to find the stuff in a can that contains only coconut, though often it has guar gum too), but has a slight coconut flavor.

I mentioned to my mom that I was going to try making nut milk.  “I have a recipe!”, she exclaimed. Reaching into the bowl of garlic that we keep on the counter, she pulled out a small, dusty slip of paper.  Of course, the recipe for nut milk lives in the garlic bowl…

The recipe read as follows:

12 each of almonds, walnuts and cashews (or all of one kind.) [I used all sprouted, skin-less, dehydrated almonds]

1 T. raw pumpkin seeds

1T. raw sunflower seeds

1 T. sesame seeds [I skipped these]

4 cups water.

1 t. (raw) honey or favorite sweetener

Blend nuts/seeds with one cup of hot or cold water for 1 minute. [be careful if you use hot – start the blender of slow and hold the lid on tight so you don’t have an explosion]  Add rest of water and blend for one more minute.  Strain through a nut milk bag or cheese cloth. Squeeze to get the last bit of liquid out. Stir or blend in sweetener.

I found that the taste of the nut milk was almost indiscernible when added to my decaf earl grey with a touch of honey. Success!

[I used the left over nut grounds to make “french toast pancakes“]

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