Fermented Radish, Cauliflower, and Coriander Brine Vegetables

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Ingredients

  • Sliced cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, beets or radishes cut into 1cm chunks (just enough to fit in a litre jar)
  • Capsicums, onions, or garlic to season
  • A few sprigs of parsley, cilantro, dill, oregano, or any other herb you have
  • A couple of grape leaves or black tea (to keep them crunchy)
  • 1 litre of warm filtered water
  • 2 tablespoons sea or Himalayan salt

Brine veg.

Method

1. Combine water and sea salt, stir well and set aside.

2. Add a few pinches of herbs and the vegetables of your choice along with the onion, garlic and fresh herbs like coriander or parsley, oregano, thyme to the bottom of a jar.

fer. ingred brine

3.Fill the jar halfway up with chunks of vegetables. Add a bit more herbs and seasonings and fill the jar with more slices up to 2.5cm below the rim.

4. Pour salt-water brine over the vegetables. At this point, you want to weigh the vegetables down in order for it to remain below the level of the brine to ferment evenly. (I like to use a narrow glass weight, long strips of carrots, a sterlised rock, or a smaller glass jar filled with water that fits into my wide-mouth litre jar.  Just press it down until enough brine covers everything in the jar. 

5. Cover tightly with the lid. (if using a glass jar you can use cheesecloth or a towel to cover.  Allow to sit at room temperature, ideally between 15-26 degrees. Check your jars and burp or open them every few days by loosening the lid and allowing some gas to escape. You will also see bubbles rise as the fermentation takes place which is perfectly normal.

6. Allow the vegetables to ferment 5 – 7days, depending on the temperature. Smell and taste and when you think they are ready, transfer the jar to the refrigerator.

NTP Califlower pickle

 

Fermented Chickpea Wraps

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I have a love affair with Chickpeas and especially chickpea flour. It’s so versatile I use it for sauces, to thicken a soup, fritters, and even in savoury muffins. It’s actually used in Europe as a traditional flatbread as it picks up the taste from the fillings and toppings that you use.

I try to ferment almost anything–most vegetables, fruits, grain and bean products whatever will create healthy flora for our gut biome and make it easier to absorb is a bonus to help digest the food that I eat. 

Play around with seasonal toppings and fillings. For summertime, try avocado, rocket, hummus & fresh greens. For wintery warming, load it up with lightly sauteed greens, chopped roasted vegetables, refried beans, herbs and spices.  Virtually anything that you have in the fridge that you want to re-use just warm up with some different herbs and spices and create a whole new taste sensation.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup chickpea flour (besan, chana)
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp salt
  • oil for frying

Method

1. Mix the chickpea flour and water thoroughly in a bowl. Stir through the spices then cover with a tea-towel, clean cloth or wrap.

2. Leave for 24-48 hours. I usually add 2 tablespoons of water and 2 tablespoons of chickpea flour every day to feed it but you don’t have to do that. In warm weather, you’ll find it ferments fairly quickly, sending a few bubbles to the surface.

3. When the batter is ready, mix through the salt, and decide how you want to cook it:

4. For little bites, heat the oven to 175C and oil the muffins cups well,  pour about 1 heaping tablespoon of batter into each hole. Bake for 10-12 minutes. The batter will start to pull away from the edges and may go a little golden.

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5. For bigger pancakes heat a large skillet, (cast iron is best )add a little oil and rub it into the cast-iron skillet, (if using stainless steel don’t rub it in)  Then pour in enough batter to thinly cover the base of your pan. Cook over a medium heat, pile some toppings on top while the batter is still wet and let it cook through.

 

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Pickled Eggs, Beetroot, and Onions

Fer. Eggs Finished

 

 There is nothing quite like a group of women gathered around the kitchen bench for a day of fermenting vegetables mixed with lots of laughter and stories. Last year we did this in one of my cooking workshops; it was a cool winter day and we preceded to wash, cook, chop, slice, press, mash and stuff jars with all sorts of edibles.

These quick pickled eggs with onion and beetroot were pickled in apple cider vinegar which is high in acetic acid. Like other acids, acetic acid can increase your body’s absorption of important minerals from the foods you eat. 

Foods like these that are pickled have been preserved in an acidic medium. In the case of various types of pickles you find on the shelves of shops, the pickling comes from vinegar. These vegetables, however, are not fermented (even though vinegar itself is the product of fermentation) and hence do not offer the probiotic and enzymatic value of homemade wild fermented vegetables.

 We also used beet juice, so that the eggs whites turn a beautiful fuchsia pink. You can see for yourself they really are a show stopper.  The longer you keep the eggs in the pickling liquid, the deeper it penetrates into the eggs.   

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2-1 cup water (use more if the water level doesn’t cover the other ingredients)
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 1/4 tablespoon whole allspice or cardamom
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3-4 medium beets, untrimmed and unpeeled
  • 1 medium onion sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 4-5 large eggs, hard-boiled and peeled

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Method

  1. Wash the beets and trim the stems, leaving about 1 inch of stem. Place in a pot, cover with water and boil for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the beets are just tender. Drain, cool, and peel them. Reserve the beetroot juice.
  2. Combine the sugar, vinegar, beet juice or water, sea salt, cardamom, cloves, and cinnamon sticks in a saucepan and place over medium heat. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer for 10 minutes.
  3. Remove from the heat and cool.
  4. Place the onions, beets and hard-boiled eggs in a large jar.
  5. Pour the vinegar mixture over the eggs in the jar, covering the eggs completely. Cover tightly with a lid and allow it to cool.
  6. Store in the refrigerator 2-4 weeks.   
  7. The pickled eggs will be ready to eat after a few days. The longer the eggs sit in the pickling juice, the more the pickling juice will penetrate the eggs. 

Ferm. Eggs 1

Fermented Dosa

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Dosa is a GF thin fermented pancake similar to a crepe. The fermentation process increases vitamin B and vitamin C and is a popular south Indian snack, breakfast or meal that can be eaten with various fillings such as coconut chutney and dahl.

Ingredients 

  • 3/4 cup long-grain rice (basmati can be used)
  • ¼ cup brown rice – 1/4 cup (47.5 gm)
  • ½ cup split black lentil or mung beans
  • ½ teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  •  Himalayan salt – As needed

Preparing the Batter

  • Rinse the rice and soak it in a large bowl overnight.
  • Rinse the urad dal (black gram) or other lentils. Soak it along with fenugreek seeds overnight in a separate bowl.
  • Drain out the soaking liquid from the dal and the rice and keep it for further use.
  • Grind the rice, dal, fenugreek seeds, salt altogether or separately for a smoother batter using the soaking liquid preserved earlier to make it a smooth paste.
  • Let this batter kept for another 6-8 hours in a warm place covered with a tight lid. You can leave it overnight. (longer in the cooler weather)
  • The next day or when the batter almost doubles in volume it is now ready to cook. You can store the batter in the fridge for a few days. Just stir it a few times a week.  It will keep fermenting.

    Making the Dosa:

  • Heat a dosa pan or very flat heavy skillet pan and sprinkle a few drops of water on it. If the water drops evaporate within 2 seconds, then the pan is hot enough and ready.
  • Spread a very thin layer of oil over the pan
  • Pour the batter onto the hot pan with oil and spread out the batter in a circular shape.
  • If needed, you can drip a few drops of oil or ghee onto batter dosa or around it.
  • Cook in a medium flame till the bottom side becomes light brown.
  • For a more crispy dosa, you can flip the other side and cook it for another few minutes. Serve with coconut chutney or other fillings.

Fermented Plant-based Kimchi

 

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Ingredients

    •  1 large Napa (Chinese) cabbage ( 1 kg. )
    • 2% sea or Himalayan salt
    • Spring or filtered water
    • 4 finely minced garlic cloves
    • 1 cup finely chopped onion
    • 1/2 cup radishes
    • 2 grated apples
    • 1-2 tablespoons grated ginger
    • 1-2 teaspoons (or more – depending on your taste and tolerance) chilli (you can also use a small fresh red chilli, removing some of the seeds) (optional)
    • 1 tablespoon Shiro or another kind of unpasteurized miso
    • 2 cups finely chopped spring onions
    • 1 cup grated carrot
    • ½ cup thinly sliced daikon or red radish
    • 2 tablespoons wakame or dulse sea vegetable (useful if you should avoid cabbage)

 

 

Method

  • 1. Cut the cabbage lengthways and then into quarters. Remove the inner core. Cut each quarter into thin slices. Weigh the cabbage. Grate the carrots and weigh them. Then calculate the amount of salt according to the weight of the vegetables.
  • 2. Combine the garlic, onion, apple, grated ginger, spring onions, miso and wakame and mix or blend well to make a paste. Add water if necessary. Set aside.
  • 3. Place the cabbage in a large bowl and massage the sea salt in, it should start to soften and feel a little rubbery. Cover with boiled or filtered water, let soak for a few hours.

Kimchi prep.

  • 4. Drain and rinse lightly.
  • 5. In a large bowl, combine the cabbage with the other vegetables then add the paste and massage in to coat everything.kim kneading 1
  • 6.  Pack the mixture into a sterilised glass jar or crock leaving one inch of space at the top (it may expand as it ferments). Make sure you pack it down tight so that the salty brine oozes over the top of the vegetables.
  • 7.  Take a large cabbage leaf and cover the Kim-chi so no vegetables are exposed to the air. Then put a heavy  weight on top, cover and set aside for a week in a cold dark place.kim ingredients 1
  •  8. If it is warm, it will ferment faster. You can open up for a taste and smell test as the days or weeks go by till you are happy with the flavour.
  • ( If there is any mould on the top when you open it up, just scrape it off and discard it unless it is green. Then toss it away and start all over again.)
  • Store in the fridge when you think it is ready and the fermentation will slow down.  Will keep for up to 6- 12 months

Fer. jar

Fermented Sourdough Sweet or Savoury Crepes

Ferment Crepe

Shelley and I shared these crepes first having some savour with beans and vegetables and then onto the yummy sweet ones with berries, mandarins and coconut yoghurt.   The uncooked batter can be stored in the fridge for 5 days if it lasts that long before using it up.  Just stir every few days to keep it fresh. It keeps fermenting just like a sourdough starter so if you don’t use it for 7 days remove it from the fridge, add some flour, water, stir and return it to the fridge where it should last another few days.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup oat flour
  • 2 cups sorghum or besan (chickpea) flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (omit if using Miso)
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  •  2 tablespoons flax egg*
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds (optional)
  • 2 cups lukewarm water
  • 4 Tbsp sauerkraut juice or 1 Tbsp miso (this will help the batter ferment faster) optional

Method

  1. Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  2. Add the water and juice or miso and flax egg* stirring to make a batter.
  3. Cover tightly. If you fail to wrap it tightly it will partially dry and will not work as well.
  4. Set aside in a warm place.  Stir daily until bubbles appear. Usually ready after sitting aside overnight unless it very cold outside, then plan for another day.
  5. Place a small frying pan or skillet (for which you have a lid) on medium-high heat until it is warm. Oil pan.
  6. Using a measuring cup, pour ½ – ⅔ cup of batter into the centre of the pan. Quickly pick the pan up and move it to distribute the batter. Cover with lid and cook until bubbles appear then turn over and cook a few minutes longer. Repeat.
  7. Fill with your favourite filling-  fruit,  mandarins, apples, pears, dried fruit, coconut yoghurt, or leftover veg, tofu, beans, potatoes, hummus, and of course some ferments.

Flax Egg*

2 Tbsp. flaxseed meal (ground raw flaxseed) and 3-4  Tbsp. water

Add flaxseed meal and water to a dish and stir. Let rest for 5 minutes to thicken. Add to recipes in place of 1-2 eggs

It’s not an exact 1:1 substitution in every recipe because it doesn’t bind and stiffen during baking quite like an egg does

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Zucchini Cashew Cream Rolls

Zucchini close rolls

 Ingredients

1 cup unsalted cashews soaked for 30 minutes in warm water

½ cup almond milk

¼ cup basil leaves

2 garlic cloves

2 teaspoons Shiro Miso

1 large egg or Flaxseed egg *

a little leftover cooked veg.(optional)

1-2 cups pasta sauce

1-2 large zucchini or a few slices of Chinese cabbage

Method

  1. Soak cashews in warm water and set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 200 C. Oil a sheet of natural baking paper with oil and set aside.
  3. Slice the zucchini into 3 mm thin slices. Lay zucchini onto an oiled sheet and roast in the oven 10 minutes. Remove and set aside for 5 minutes before moving.
  4. If using cabbage, drop into boiling water for 1 minute and drain and cool.
  5. Meanwhile, drain cashews, and put in a food processor with the rest of the ingredients Blend till lightly cracked.
  6. Spread some of the pasta sauce into an oiled casserole dish.
  7. Lay a strip of zucchini or cabbage and spread about 1-2 tablespoons of the cashew mixture over each individual strip.
  8. Roll up and top with a teaspoon of the pasta sauce.
  9. Bake uncovered 15-20 minutes or until set. Serve topped with any ferment of your choice.
  • To make a flax egg, mix one tablespoon ground flaxseed meal with three tablespoons of water. Mix together, and set aside for 15 minutes to set up and thicken.

 

zucchini roll ferment

Beatrix’s Blissful Summer Breeze

Shelley brought her delightful 11-week old daughter Beatrix over for lunch. She had mama’s milk and we had a lovely summer lunch followed by a dessert to honour her delightful presence.

Hope you enjoy it as much as we did. Served with coconut yoghurt it really hit the spot.

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Ingredients

  • 1 punnet organic strawberries
  • 4 Tablespoons agar- agar flakes
  • ½ cup organic apple juice
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Coconut Layer

  • 2 Tablespoons agar- agar flakes
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ½ cup apple juice
  • 2 cups coconut cream
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot or kudzu
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • Berry Topping
  • 1 punnet organic blueberries
  • a few leftover strawberries
  • 1 tablespoon kudzu or arrowroot
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • Chopped dates and almonds
  • Coconut yoghurt (optional)

 

Method

  1. Puree all but 4 strawberries till creamy.
  2. Agar, juice water maple syrup into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Lower heat till agar has dissolved. Add the strawberry puree and vanilla. Remove from the heat and put into a mold.
  3. Combine agar-agar, maple syrup, juice together. Cook till the agar dissolves. Add the coconut cream.
  4. Dissolve the kudzu in the water and stir into the coconut mixture and cook till thickened.
  5. Cool for a few minutes until both mixtures are the same temperature. Add the coconut mixture slowly to the strawberry layer. Set aside at room temperature or for a quick result refrigerate.

 

6. Put the blueberries and the reserved strawberries in a saucepan and warm. Dissolve the kudzu in the water and maple syrup, add it to the blueberry-strawberry mixture and bring to the boil. Remove from heat.

beatrix slice to[

  1. Serve with the blueberry and strawberry topping,  yoghurt,  dates and almonds,

beatrix slice cocn

Crispy Tofu

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Ingredients

Bowl

  • 3-4 cups seasonal vegetables- carrots, purple cabbage, squash,  green beans, snow peas, etc.
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic or ginger
  • Tamari to taste
  • 1 cup coconut or Quinoa flour
  • Grated zest of 2 small limes or lemons
  • 2½ teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 1 tablespoon black (or white) sesame seeds
  • 2-3 tablespoons coriander leaves
  • 250g firm tofu, cut into 2cm. chunks
  • 1 cup chickpea, coconut or quinoa flour
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • About 100ml olive or coconut oil, for frying
  • Himalayan Salt

 

  • Dressing
  • 2 tablespoon lime or lemon juice
    1 teaspoon sesame or olive oil
    2 teaspoons grated ginger
    Himalayan salt to taste
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    Fresh coriander leaves

Method

1. Heat skillet or fry pan. Add garlic or ginger and sauté 1-2 minutes to flavour the oil.

2. Turn down the heat to a simmer and cook for about 10 minutes, until al dente.  Add tamari to taste. Remove from the heat cover and keep warm.

3. Next, make the dressing. Whisk together the lime or lemon juice, oil, ginger,  and an eighth of a teaspoon of salt. Slowly pour in the other olive oil bit by bit, whisking as you do until fully combined and emulsified. Set aside.

4. Lightly crush the coriander seeds, then put them in a bowl with the coconut or quinoa flour, lime or lemon zest and sesame seeds. Add half a teaspoon of salt and mix well. Toss the tofu first in the chickpea flour, then in the egg and finally in the flour mixture, making sure it’s well coated all over.

5. Heat the oil in a medium frying pan over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add half the crusty tofu and fry it for four to five minutes, turning it over so it goes golden-brown and crisp all over. Remove with a slotted spoon, transfer to a kitchen paper-covered plate and keep warm while you cook the remaining tofu (you may find you need to add a little more oil to the pan).

6. Divide the vegetables between plates, Pour over the dressing and stir. Top with the fried tofu and coriander leaves and serve warm.

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Christmas Mango-Coconut Pie

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Agar is the vegetarian sister of gelatine and can be used for the perfect chilled summer dessert. Great for the holidays or even as a cooling refreshing breakfast or brunch dish. Agar is a sea vegetable gelatine and contains proteins, polysaccharides, minerals, and vitamins.

Ingredients

Base

  • 1-2 cups mango flesh for puree (1 ½ -2 mangos)
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 4 T agar-agar flakes or 2 t. powder
  • 2 tablespoon maple or 4 T. rice syrup (to taste)
  • ½ cup fruit juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (optional)

Coconut Layer

  • 2 cups of coconut milk
  • 2 T agar flakes
  • 1 tablespoon maple or 2 T. rice syrup
  • pinch of sea or Himalayan salt
  • Blueberries
  • Mint

Coconut 2

 

Berry Topping

  • 1 cup blackberries or raspberries, fresh or frozen
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon maple or 2 T. rice malt syrup
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds

Method

Mango Layer

  1. Pureé the mango pieces to a smooth pulp. Set aside.
  2. Combine the water, agar-agar, and sweetener. Use a whisk to stir until the agar dissolves completely.
  3. Add the mango pureé and continue to stir and cook for a minute. Add vanilla.
  4. Pour into a glass or ceramic pie dish or square mold. Fill ½-3/4 full. Drop some blueberries into the liquid.
  5. Let it sit at room temperature to set completely. You may refrigerate to speed up the process, but it is not necessary. If you refrigerate bring the jelly back to room temperature (otherwise the coconut layer won’t stick properly).

Coconut Layer

  1. Combine the water, sweetener salt, and agar-agar in a small pan over medium heat. Make sure the agar and sweetener are completely dissolved.
  2. Add the coconut milk and continue to stir until the coconut milk is fragrant. Do not let it come to a boil. You want it to be hot, but not boiling. Set aside for a few minutes.
  3. While the coconut milk is still hot, pour over the mango layer. Make sure the coconut milk is warm otherwise the two layers won’t ‘stick’ and will come apart while serving.
  4. Cool and prepare the raspberry topping.

Coconut 2aa

Raspberry Topping

1. Combine all the ingredients together and process until almost smooth. You may need to add some extra water to help it combine.

2. Spoon mixture into a saucepan and heat over medium heat until the mixture begins to bubble.

Reduce the heat and whisk until thickened. Cool and spoon on top in the middle of the coconut-mango pie or all over the pie.

Cocnut pie 3