One of the most nutritious, yet basic fermented foods is sauerkraut. When fermented, the lowly cabbage is packed with nutrients. Add Daikon and garlic and you have a tasty treat!
I’m really in love with Daikon radish as it adds a bit of spice to any dish, yet is not too spicy. It also adds a lot of nutrition. Daikon is part of the brassica group of vegetables that are known to have many nutrients and benefits such as, anti-oxidants, electrolytes, minerals, vitamins and dietary fiber.
Daikon (and the other brassicas) contains the isothiocyanate anti-oxidant compound called sulforaphane. Research indicates that sulforaphane protects against prostate, breast, colon and ovarian cancers.
Daikon contains phytochemicals like indoles which are detoxifying agents and zea-xanthin, lutein and beta carotene, which are flavonoid antioxidants. The total antioxidant strength, or ORAC vlaue (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) is 1736 µmol TE/100 g. (source)
Combined with cabbage and garlic you have a powerful source of vitamin C, B vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
A little goes a long way. Start with just a teaspoon with each meal as it provides enzymes that help to digest food as well as probiotics.
- 1 small head of organic cabbage
- 1 medium organic Daikon radish
- 4 - 5 cloves organic garlic minced
- 2 Tbsp sea salt (where to buy)
- 1/2 tsp starter mixed with 1/2 cup water (where to buy starter)
- Grate all the vegetables and place in the bowl – leaving a few whole leaves aside
- Add the salt and starter
- Mix together and/or press for a few minutes with a kraut pounder or your fist – until the cabbage expresses some liquid
- Mix it all together well and press firmly into the ball jars
- Leave one inch at the top for expansion
- Cover the vegetables with the extra leaves and press under the brine – this helps keep it all under the brine
- Add extra filtered water if you need a little more liquid
- Place the weight on top if you are using one
- Cover and attach airlock if you are using one – or just use a regular lid
- Place on a plate and place on your fermentation shelf for one to two weeks (or longer – sometimes I leave it for 4 weeks) then refrigerate
- You can discard the cabbage leaves covering the kraut when you open the jar
- It keeps in the refrigerator for months
- Food processor with grater attachment (where to buy a food processor)
- Bowl for mixing
- Quart and pint ball jars with airlock lids or regular lids (where to buy)
- Kraut pounder if you have one (optional) (where to buy)
- Glass weight (these really help keep the veges under the brine) (where to buy)
Extend Your Microbiome
Adding various fermented foods to your diet can greatly improve digestion and health!
Of critical importance is the addition of fermented foods and beverages that add strains of bacteria and yeasts.
Start to introduce homemade yogurt, coconut milk yogurt, kefir, kombucha, beet kvass, sauerkraut, and pickles just to name a few. Incorporate these fermented foods into your diet in small portions at first as they pack a powerful amount of bacteria that can set off a Herxheimer reaction, or die-off, if introduced too quickly.
While it can take a little time to get used to eating and drinking all the different cultures, it is a good course of action to introduce new cultured products as you move along on your health journey.
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