Beetroot & Red Cabbage Sauerkraut
It's Christmas! It's Christmas!
There are many things I love about this time of year:
gathering with friends and family
the many varieties and colours of christmas lights
But being a minimalist, there's one thing I do not like about the holiday season: the commercialization of it. Don't get me wrong, I love to give gifts - but not just for the sake of giving gifts. I like to give things that are thoughtful or that I know will be of use to others... and edible gifts are always winners.
This year for Christmas I gifted several jars of sauerkraut. It's fermented in batch so the large quantity makes for multiple cute little gifts when placed in small jars, sealed with cloth and ribbon or twine.
Another gift is sauerkraut's main health benefit: probiotics.
Dietitian's Definition: probiotics are beneficial bacteria that live in the intestinal tract.
Here are some of the benefits probiotics offer:
protect against harmful bacteria
produce antimicrobial compounds
enhance nutrition status by improving the absorption of certain nutrients
make certain vitamins, such as vitamin K and biotin
release enzymes that help with food breakdown, which positively affect metabolism and protect against colorectal cancer
strengthen the immune system
What happens if there is not enough good bacteria? The gut flora is more easily taken over by pathogens.
Dietitian's Definition: pathogens are disease-causing microorganisms.
These harmful pathogens can:
decrease immune function and therefore increase risk of infection
compromise metabolism, and
contribute to weight gain
So how to ferment your own nutritious and delicious sauerkraut? Here are the steps:
Step 1: gather equipment and ingredients - you'll need: red cabbage, beetroots, coriander seeds, salt, a large bowl, a large glass jar, a weighted object, a clean cloth and rubber band
Step 2: finely slice the red cabbage and add it to the bowl
Step 3: grate the beetroot and add it to the bowl
Step 4: add the salt to the bowl
Step 5: work the salt into the vegetables by massaging and squeezing for 10-15 minutes
Step 6: transfer the mixture into a glass jar, including the brine that's extracted