EatInEatOut Spring 2015 - Page 18

by Kelly Brisson, East Coast Editor O ne of the most popular and trendy terms in food these days is "Fermented". Fizzy, tangy, healthy fermentation. But did you know it can extend much further than your frosty mug of beer and the sauerkraut atop your bratwurst? Home fermentation is becoming a popular past time for amateurs and seasoned vets alike. It's a simple, healthy and natural way to preserve ingredients and keep your gut flora healthy. The term "lacto -fermentation", which we use in all three of the recipes below, refers to a specific type of fermentation that relies on Lactobacillus bacteria. This bacteria is present on the surface of many species of plants as well as in the gastrointestinal tract and mouths of humans and other animals. Lactobacillus bacteria converts sugars into lactic acid, which is a natural preservative that inhibits the growth of harmful bacterias. This process helps preserve and, in some cases, increase the vitamin and enzyme levels in foods. Fermented foods are also more easily digested. Though it can seem daunting and there is certainly much to be learned if you want to delve deeper into fermented foods, starting slow with a few simple recipes is a great way to explore homefermentation. With minimal specialty equipment required, these recipes can be put together in under 20 minutes and all you have to do is place them in a cool, dark spot and wait for those tangy bubbles to start forming. When they do, you can taste your jars of bubbly goodness each day until they are to your liking. At that point they go into the fridge and will keep for months. This is a great summer project for the home-cook or the kids! Fizzy, tangy, healthy fermentation. 18 WWW.EATINEATOUT.CA