The Lacto-Fermentation Learning Curve

I’ve always loved sauerkraut although it wasn’t a family staple growing up. I have memories of being fascinated by the enormous and mysterious kraut crock our neighbours had in their basement. And as an adult, I was thrilled to discover kimchi, which is both like and totally unlike my beloved sauerkraut.

Learning that these lacto-fermented foods had health benefits was a bonus. But I decided I too should make my own versions, both improving my digestive health and connecting with long standing preserving traditions. And since I’m recommending them more often in my practice, it only makes sense I should have a greater comfort with making my own.

But it turns out I’m not that good at it. Too much book learning, not enough hands on confidence perhaps. Either way, I recently came to two conclusions. First, I needed some in-person help. Check! This past weekend, I attended Little City Farm’s Saeurkraut and Kimchi workshop and it was great. Second, get my hands on some fermenting “airlocks” for my mason jars. There is much debate in the lacto-fermenting world whether these are necessary or not, but I came to realize that *I* felt better with the idea of using them, so they became necessary for me. And with that, my order was placed and airlocks on their way.

Interested? There are many lacto-fermenting resources out there — library, bookstore and internet. And so many good reasons to start exploring these foods. Both Little City Farm and Minga Skill Building Hub run workshops periodically, but do what I found so difficult, and jump right in! Then let me know how it goes. 🙂

Alex Verge, ND

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