My Grandmother was from Poland and made homemade sauerkraut and sausage almost every Sunday. I can remember going into a pristine area of her basement set aside for fermenting vegetables and working with her to make the sour cabbage. For my Grandmother’s generation, fermenting vegetables for preservation and health made sense. Fermentation helped us process vegetables that wouldn’t last the winter otherwise.
Even more than that, I can still remember Sunday dinner including the wonderful preserved cabbage. There is nothing that smells better than bacon, onions, and sauerkraut sauteing in a skillet on top of the stove, while the sausage roasts in the oven. There was so much love in the food preparation and a hands on relationship with the food we ate.
Why Fermented Vegetables?
As I look back, I don’t remember my grandparents or my parents, when they still ate at home with their parents, complaining of digestive problems, gas, nausea, bloating, stomach or intestinal flu. It was only when my parents left home and stopped eating fermented vegetables and started eating convenience foods (which didn’t happen until the 1950s) that they started having digestive issues. I believe this is because their “Grandma’s House” diet was rich in fermented foods which brought a plethora of “good” bacteria to their gut. I’m including the McBride/Barringer Interview on Dr. Joseph Mercola’s website, which gives more detailed information about having a healthy gut: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/03/18/mcbride-and-barringer-interview.aspx.
How to Make Fermented Vegetables
We made sauerkraut in a very old clay crock, with just cabbage and salt. But, the Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen did such a good job of describing the process of fermenting vegetables, including a recipe and suggestions for vegetables, spices and herbs to use. So, I’m going to end today’s post by referring you to the fermented veggies post on their blog: http://www.nourishingmeals.com/2012/02/how-to-make-lacto-fermented-vegetables.html
Fermenting Vegetables Worked
In our quest for modernization, we often release practices that are in the best interests of our health. I wholeheartedly suggest that you investigate fermented vegetables and make an effort to add them to your food program. At the very least, you can try them by making a purchase at your local Whole Foods Grocery.