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The Power of Fermented Foods

Fall used to be a time to not only harvest food but also to learn to preserve them. This can be done in a number of ways, turning fruit into jams, tomatoes into sauce or fermenting foods to last longer. Almost all civilizations have fermented foods, this lost art is not only a way to save you a trip to the grocery store in the winter snow, it also is extremely healthy.

There are a number of reasons to have fermented foods. First they are packed with essential nutrients and vitamins like vitamin K2 and B vitamins, this is important for the vegetarians and vegans. It optimizes your immune system as it is filled with probiotics which help keep a healthy gut. The natural bacteria in fermented foods causes natural detoxification. And lastly it is cost effective! It will make your produce last so much longer!

Fermented foods include yogurt, bread, chocolate, sauerkraut, pickles, kimchi, tempeh, kefir, lassi, kombucha and miso just to name a few. Depending on the part of the world, different foods are fermented, for example in Eastern Europe it is very common to have pickled green tomatoes. That is not something we usually see on our menu.

It may be hard for some to take the flavor of fermented foods when they are not used to it. So we’ve asked Chef Ignacio Albo, a personal chef in the Catskills region, for a yummy , easy fermented food recipe.

Bread & Butter Pickles

Ingredients

5lbs thinly sliced cucumbers

3 thinly sliced spanish onions

5tbls kosher salt

5 cups sugar

5 cups white vinegar

2.5 cups apple cider vinegar

1 cup brown sugar

5 tsp mustard seeds

2.5 tsp celery seeds

1 tsp tumeric

1- Combine cucumbers and salt in a large bowl – cover – chill for 1.5 hours

2- Rinse cucumbers under cold water & return to the bowl

3- Combine the remaining ingredients in a sauce pan and bring to a simmer

4- Pour over cucumbers

5- Let it stand at room temperature for 1 hour

6- Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours

7- Store in an air tight container

The longer it takes to eat them the more they will ferment! This is a great classic recipe to get your tastebuds started, then the possibilities are endless.

 

Any questions on food or looking to book a Chef for your next family get together? Contact Chef Iggy at ialbo90@gmail.com or check him out @iggilicious_90.