How to Use Kefir to Ferment Vegetables

Sauerkraut, kefir and coconut milk kefir can all be made using live kefir grains.
Sauerkraut, kefir and coconut milk kefir can all be made using live kefir grains. | Source

Kefir grains, typically used in milk to create a probiotic drink, can be used to ferment vegetables. You can also use the whey left from making kefir cheese. Fermenting vegetables is one of the healthiest ways to preserve food, while also keeping the vitamin content intact. It also adds probiotic cultures to your food. The bacterial cultures in kefir help boost the immune system, improve digestion and provide a high amount of antioxidants to the body. Kefir fermented vegetables have a slightly sour, yet delicious, taste.

Fermenting Kefir Vegetables

What You Need

Kefir whey

Vegetables

Bowl

Large Canning Jar

Step 1

Follow the directions for making kefir cheese by separating the whey from the curds. Store the drained whey in a sealed glass jar until you are ready to make your fermented vegetables. Whey is the thin liquid that is strained from the thicker curds.

Step 2

Select the type of vegetables you would like to ferment. Vegetables such as carrots, cabbage, cauliflower and garlic work well.

Step 3

Wash and cut your vegetables into 1/2 inch chunks. You can also shred your vegetables.

Step 4

Add 1/2 a liter of cold water to your bowl. Mix 7 tablespoons of your kefir whey into the water.

Step 5

Add your vegetables to the large canning jar until it is 3/4 full. Pour the whey mixture over the vegetables until they are completely covered.

Step 6

Seal the jar and set it in a dark location at room temperature. Allow your vegetables to ferment for 10 days. Begin eating your vegetables after they are done fermenting. Keep them stored in the refrigerator.



Kefir Sauerkraut

What You Need

Head of cabbage

Sea salt

Bowl

Pestle

Live kefir grains

1/2 gallon glass jar

Step 1

Trim any damaged or wilted leaves from your head of cabbage and discard them. Cut the outer leaf so that it is an inch larger than the diameter of the jar you will be using.

Step 2

Thinly slice our entire cabbage head. Put 1/4 of the sliced cabbage in a bowl. Add 1/4 tablespoon of sea salt to the cabbage.

Step 3

Use a pestle to bruise the cabbage leaves, and then add another 1/4 of the sliced cabbage and 1/4 tablespoon of sea salt. Continue to bruise the cabbage with the pestle. Repeat the process two more times.

Step 4

Add 1/2 tablespoon of kefir grains to the half-gallon glass jar. Put half of the cabbage mixture over the kefir grains in the jar. Pound the mixture down inside the jar.

Step 5

Add 1 tablespoon of kefir grains over the cabbage, and then add the remaining cabbage to the jar. Pound the mixture down again.

Step 6

Cover the cabbage and kefir with the cabbage leaf you set aside. Tuck the edges of the leaf into the sides of the jar.

Step 7

Add enough water to your fermenting jar until it is 1 inch above the sauerkraut mixture. Cover the jar loosely with the lid.

Step 8

Place your fermenting jar in a dark, cool location. Allow the sauerkraut to ferment until it becomes tangy, which is for about three days.

Step 9

Skim any foam from the surface of your fermentation. Add water, if needed, so that it is still an inch above the surface of the sauerkraut.

Step 10

Tighten the lid on your jar and store your fermented sauerkraut in the fridge. Store it up to one month.

Resources

Nourishing Foodways; Kerir Sauerkraut Recipe

Cultured Food Life; Cultured Vegetables

Natural News; Easy-to-Make Fermented Vegetables Boost Immunity and Improve Health

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