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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

She Cut Off Their Tails...

She cut off their tails..
and made liver cleansing juices and beet kvass.*

My friend and sustainable nut, Kelly, recently taught me how to make some fermented foods, sauerkraut and kvass, using the whey from cultured yogurt (Brown Cow makes quick whey if you are in a hurry).

Basically a beet kvass is a slightly fermented drink made by soaking cubed beets with whey, ginger, a drop of lavender oil, and some salt — everything in a sterilized container. You can see how I hurriedly wrote up the recipe on the jar as Kelly was leaving. After a couple days in a dark cupboard you end up with a fairly mild, sweet and healthful drink. Apparently it's better than just juicing beets because the fermentation neutralizes the acids. Here's a similar recipe, if you're inclined. Unfortunately my kvass turned out too salty (we experimented with sulfuric Black Salt, which was a bit gnar), but the one Kelly made was dee-lish. I even liked her green drink, which was made with weeds harvested from her alley! If you're local and looking to learn how to make therapeutic foods, Kelly's your gal.

I'm also really excited about the kraut. We have a local, kim chee-style raw kraut that we love, but it's pricey. I'm hoping to make a homemade replacement. A couple more weeks and we get to try out the stinky goodness.

More creepy beet root pics here.


*Thanks to Blaize for pointing out that this kvass is not the same as the traditional Russian drink.

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Blogger Michaela said...

I love that first photo - scary....

Tue Feb 17, 07:08:00 PM PST  
Blogger Momma Bear said...

I'm so pumped to see you posting this. I just wrote up a blurb on fermenting foods, well how I plan to do it with my gardening goods, and on Kombucha. I'm going to look up Beet Kvass and check out your friends website. Not sure if you've tried Kombucha but it's a russian drink as well and fermented. I'm awaiting a kombucha sponge in the mail so I can make an attempt at creating some-so I don't have to purchase it for $4 a bottle!
take care,
other blog:

Tue Feb 17, 07:39:00 PM PST  
Blogger Harpa J said...

The pictures are great!

Wed Feb 18, 12:52:00 AM PST  
Blogger Frizz said...

Love the rat butts - creepy!!

Wed Feb 18, 06:14:00 AM PST  
Anonymous Alexis said...

You are fantastic! I love that beet tails picture!
My friend Laura used to make kvass out of bread. I haven't thought about it in years, but I might have to dig out her old recipe...

Wed Feb 18, 06:32:00 AM PST  
Blogger Kristina said...

I'd never heard of kvass before, thanks for the recipe! I always have lots of whey kicking around, leftover from cheesemaking, and I love beets, so someday I may try this!

Wed Feb 18, 07:03:00 AM PST  
Blogger Regina said...

great beet pics. the beet drink sound very intriguing. I love beets, so i may have to try this out.

Wed Feb 18, 12:14:00 PM PST  
Blogger kat said...

first let me say that if you come across a fabulous vegetarian kimchee recipe, let me know please.

& second? that photo made me laugh so hard i nearly peed myself. it truly looks as though you had a tin filled with rat tails! heeheehee.

Wed Feb 18, 02:23:00 PM PST  
Blogger skymring said...

THAT is the best pic so far - i LOVE it!!

Wed Feb 18, 02:31:00 PM PST  
Blogger Blaize said...


Wed Feb 18, 04:56:00 PM PST  
Blogger Darling Petunia said...

That is so freaky.

Wed Feb 18, 06:15:00 PM PST  
Blogger Bunny said...

spooky tails!

Thu Feb 19, 05:44:00 AM PST  
Blogger Knitsonya said...

You're so crunchy granola. Love it. I would have to taste it to judge it's deliciousness, I was all ready to jump aboard the kombucha train. Not a fan of the fermentaion-before-its-alcohol.

Thu Feb 19, 12:02:00 PM PST  
Blogger Amy said...

I have my copy of Nurishing Traditions staring at me from across the room, but am totally intimidated by fermentation. You have me more intrigued though as I love beets.

Sun Feb 22, 12:27:00 PM PST  
Blogger Amy said...

I think I'll try the kraut. I love the Bubbies from whole paycheck and we have been growing our own cabbage. the only recipe I have for saurkraut requires a 15 gallon crock - maybe the toilet? - so this appeals...

Wed Feb 25, 09:24:00 AM PST  
OpenID stonemaven said...

Momma Bear, you can get a kombucha scobie going from one of those $4 bottles of unfiltered kombucha - as long as it hasn't been pasteurized.
I made up a half-gallon of strong tea, added the sugar, shook my little bottle of store-bought green tea kombucha up to get the cloudy sediment off the bottom, and added about a good cup to the cool tea. Slapped a coffee filter and a canning ring on top and found a warm place for it away from my kids.
I let it sit at the back of the cupboard for about 4 weeks, (I forgot about it) and when I finally checked it I had a 3/4 inch thick scoby growing on top. It's going strong and I'm running out of new homes for my scobys!

Mon Feb 15, 07:55:00 PM PST  

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