Fermented Foods

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Replies

  • janejellyroll
    janejellyroll Posts: 25,878 Member
    joeboland wrote: »
    I love fermented foods. Dill pickles, kimchi, sourdough, beer, sauerkraut. Yum! I have heard eating them too much is linked to cancer though.

    I believe you are thinking of pickled foods, not fermented foods. I am not aware of any evidence linking cancer to consumption of fermented foods. There is a link between consumption of pickled foods and cancer.

    There's a link between everything and cancer, depending on who you talk to.

    Oh, I agree -- I wasn't trying to discourage anyone from consuming pickled food (I eat a lot of it myself), I was just pointing out that there isn't any association (of which I'm aware) between fermented food and cancer.
  • ahoy_m8
    ahoy_m8 Posts: 2,831 Member
    Beer, bread, wine, cheese, yogurt, kefir, sour cream, chocolate, tofu, pickled cucumber, pickled fish, fish sauce, soy sauce, kimchi.

    Chocolate?
  • savithny
    savithny Posts: 1,205 Member
    If you make it yourself you can leave out the seafood. I usually use some fish sauce because I'm not hot for working with dried shrimps.

    I generally work with a brine of known value rather than salting the veg and adding water. I make a brine, put the chopped veggies in it for 24 hours, pull them out, rinse and press extra liquid out, and then mix with flavorings and pack into clean wide-mouth mason jars. I've never had kimchi fail -- and I did have a disappointing sauerkraut incident last year.

  • laur357
    laur357 Posts: 896 Member
    Miso is fermented. Miso soup, miso-glazed salmon. I also drink cultured buttermilk and love sour cream which usually have some gut-friendly bacteria going on. I'm starting to think my dad's side of the family are the only people who actually drink buttermilk, but it's dang tasty with a bit of salt and pepper. (Fermented and cultured may not technically be the same thing, but you're getting similar results)

    Note that you can cook with many fermented and cultured products, but the helpful bacteria that are good for your gut microbiome start to die at high temperatures. Same with freezing and sometimes pasteurizing (many times the cultures are added after pasteurization, which is fine). Frozen yogurt isn't likely to have a beneficial amount of surviving bacteria, nor is the buttermilk in cooked pancakes.
  • jennybearlv
    jennybearlv Posts: 1,519 Member
    I love fermented foods. Dill pickles, kimchi, sourdough, beer, sauerkraut. Yum! I have heard eating them too much is linked to cancer though.

    I believe you are thinking of pickled foods, not fermented foods. I am not aware of any evidence linking cancer to consumption of fermented foods. There is a link between consumption of pickled foods and cancer.

    What is the difference between pickling and fermenting? I thought they were the same thing. There are refrigerator pickles where a food is soaked in vinegar, giving a tangy flavor, but not fermented. However the vinegar is a fermented product. Is this what you mean?

    The google results for cancer and fermented foods are amusingly conflicting. If somebody is good at looking up studies and stuff, I would love to know what the science says.
  • rhtexasgal
    rhtexasgal Posts: 569 Member
    My mother in law makes raw milk kefir and allows it to thicken to sour cream consistency and then make a ranch dip out of it. That is the only way I can deal with the milk kefir. I make kombucha tea at home and experiment with different organic juices. It does take some adaptation to the taste. I also eat fermented pickles which taste similar to regular dill pickles except with a bigger tang factor. Kimchi is good too ...
  • jennybearlv
    jennybearlv Posts: 1,519 Member
    What is the difference between pickling and fermenting? I thought they were the same thing. There are refrigerator pickles where a food is soaked in vinegar, giving a tangy flavor, but not fermented. However the vinegar is a fermented product. Is this what you mean?
    I just realized I had a huge brain fart. Pickled foods are salted before fermenting.
  • savithny
    savithny Posts: 1,205 Member
    Technically, fermenting veggies *is* pickling them -- pickling is preserving foods by putting them in an acidic liquid in which yeast, mold, etc can't grow.
    If you use vinegar, the fermentation to create the natural acid already happened.
    if you brine them and then let them rot, you're creating the acidic environment as you go.
  • sgt1372
    sgt1372 Posts: 3,969 Member
    I've been making my own sauerkraut to use as a probiotic. Very cheap and easy to do. Just shred the cabbage, add salt and carrary seeds for flavor, allow cabbage to wilt, fill jar(s) w/cabbage and water to cover and let sit and ferment room temp for 4 weeks.

    A lot of recipes say to ferment only for 3-10 days but that's not long enough for the cabbage to go thru all of tbe stages of frrmentation necessary for "good" bacterial grow amd max probiotic benefit.

    Until now, I've been using 3 cup mason jars (a 3# cabbage will fill 2) but am going to try a 1 gal jar the next time around to increase production.
  • WagsTowson
    WagsTowson Posts: 30 Member
    Pickling uses heat, bad for the good cultures, kills them off. No heat in fermentation, so the cultures get to live.
  • nooshi713
    nooshi713 Posts: 4,839 Member
    I second Kimchi and Kombucha.
  • nighthawk584
    nighthawk584 Posts: 1,979 Member
    edited August 2019
    I've only tried Kimchi cold...I wonder how it is cooked? Sometimes it's a little too fishy for me but I still like it and I have a sensitive gut. If I eat too much of it , like sauerkraut, it gives me a lot of gas!
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 24,823 Member
    Wikipedia has a good article about fermented foods, listing many of them, including bunches I'd never heard of:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fermented_foods

    I haven't seen a kombucha without non-caloric (or low-calorie) sweeteners, though I'm sure they must exist. I don't like the taste of any non-caloric sweeteners I've tried, and can taste it in the small number of kombuchas I've tried. I'm the rare person - I guess - who thinks that vinegar tastes good, and various types are available raw/with "the mother", which is what you want if you're looking for probiotic ones. ("The mother" is just vinegar culture, needed in traditional cultured vinegars, not a woo concept.)

    There are lots of ways to "pickle", fermenting is one, so is salt-brining (which may not develop probiotic cultures) or putting into vinegar. Some fermented things are not "pickled"; not all "pickles" have probiotics.

    I frequently eat live-culture yogurt, kefir, vinegars, miso, tempeh, kim chi (there are some vegan ones available, though not really traditional). It would be a rare day without at least 2-3 types of fermented foods: So yummy!

    Homemade sauerkraut will not need added water if one follows the traditional process. Just slice cabbage super thinly (one recipe I used to use said "thinner than a dime"), and layer with pickling or kosher salt in a ceramic/glass or other suitable crock, smash it down layer by layer with something (wooden spoon will work) so that the salt & mashing make the cabbage release juice. The juice should be sufficient to cover the sliced cabbage soon after your container is full. Weight down the surface with a suitably-sized plate to hold the cabbage below the liquid (put a container of water on top if extra weight is needed), and cover with a cloth. Daily, skim off any scum, wash the plate (and weight, if used), and put it back together.

    Note that heating (such as canning) the kraut will kill the potentially-beneficial microbes.