Traditional Buttermilk vs. Cultured Buttermilk

Did you know there are two types of buttermilk?

The liquid leftover from making butter is known as traditional buttermilk.  Traditional buttermilk is very low in fat (since most of the fat went to making the butter).  It can be consumed as a beverage (try it with fresh ground pepper) or added to recipes in place of water for a nutritional boost.

Cultured buttermilk is generally what is called for in recipes.  It is also the type of buttermilk you find in the store or you can make your own using a Cultured Buttermilk Starter.  Cultured buttermilk is very similar to yogurt in the sense that it is cultured using live beneficial bacteria.  Cultured buttermilk can be consumed as a thick and creamy beverage or used in cooking (pancakes anyone?).

 

Julie Feickert

Julie Feickert

Julie Feickert started Cultures for Health in late 2008. She is the mother to three young children and enjoys cooking and reading. Her favorite cultured foods include water kefir and kombucha. Julie lives with her family in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

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Kombucha Salad Dressing & Marinade

If you have too much Kombucha Tea on hand or have some Kombucha that simply over-fermented and is too sour to be plesant to drink, there are a couple of easy ways to use it.  Did you know you can use Kombucha in place of vinegar in recipes?  Making Kombucha Salad Dressing and Marinades is an easy way to add a probiotic element to your next meal.

Kombucha Salad Dressing
Replace the vinegar in your favorite salad dressing recipe with an equal amount of Kombucha.  This works particularly well with Kombucha that is a bit over-fermented and has lost all its sweetness but Kombucha at various stages of fermentation can be used depending on your taste preferences.

Kombucha Marinade
Replace the vinegar in your favorite marinade recipe with an equal amount of Kombucha.  This works particularly well with Kombucha that is a bit over-fermented and has lost all its sweetness but Kombucha at various stages of fermentation can be used depending on your taste preferences.

Julie Feickert

Julie Feickert

Julie Feickert started Cultures for Health in late 2008. She is the mother to three young children and enjoys cooking and reading. Her favorite cultured foods include water kefir and kombucha. Julie lives with her family in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

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Using an Established Sourdough Starter vs Making Sourdough Starter from Scratch

There are many recipes and methods for making a sourdough starter from scratch available online or in popular books. Although creating a sourdough bread starter from scratch can be an interesting process, there are several advantages to using an established sourdough starter.

  • It’s easier. Creating a sourdough bread starter from scratch involves a lot of effort over a 7-day period (feeding the starter each day, switching containers each day, etc.). With an established sourdough starter, the process is more straightforward. You simply add the sourdough starter to a container, mix it with flour and water and then feed the starter (mixing in more flour and water) each day for 1-4 days (depending on whether you are using a fresh or dried sourdough starter culture). There is no need to switch containers. This process is also faster than creating a sourdough starter from scratch, particularly if you are using a fresh sourdough starter culture.
  • It’s more reliable. Using an established sourdough starter will ultimately produce more reliable results. All of our sourdough starter cultures contain active yeast that has been perpetuated over a long period of time. They are stable, active and resilient.
  • Ensure pleasant tasting sourdough. With an established sourdough starter you can be assured that your sourdough bread and other baked goods will have a pleasant taste. Not all wild yeast is created equal and we don’t all live in areas where pleasant tasting wild yeast abounds. Relying on capturing wild yeast where you live may not yield the result you desire. Many people have gone through the process of creating a sourdough starter from scratch only to find it tastes and/or smells unpleasant.
Julie Feickert

Julie Feickert

Julie Feickert started Cultures for Health in late 2008. She is the mother to three young children and enjoys cooking and reading. Her favorite cultured foods include water kefir and kombucha. Julie lives with her family in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

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Benefits of Making your own Yogurt, Kefir, Buttermilk & More

Whether you are concerned with the quality of the ingredients used or saving money, making your own yogurt, kefir, buttermilk and other dairy products has several benefits:

Use a quality starter culture: Live active bacteria will facilitate your yogurt, buttermilk or kefir making process.  Whether you use a traditional heirloom-variety culture that can be recultured from batch-to-batch or a direct-set one-time use culture, having control over which culture you use allows you to know exactly what bacteria your finished product will contain.

Use high quality milk: Culturing your own dairy products makes is much more affordable to use high quality milk.  For example, organic yogurt in the grocery store generally costs $.09-$.19 oz. but when you only need to buy the milk (once you have the starter culture), you can take the cost of organic yogurt down to $.04 oz.  A huge savings! It only takes a few batches of yogurt to completely recoup the cost of the starter culture.  The savings for buttermilk and kefir can be even more dramatic!  In addition, it can be difficult, if not impossible, to find healthy yogurt, buttermilk and kefir made with the type of milk you might prefer (non-homogenized, locally sourced, raw, etc.) so making your own dairy products allows you much more freedom to choose the quality of your milk across several dimensions.

Leave out the additives and stabilizers: Most commercial dairy products contain additives and stabilizers to thicken the product, change the texture or sweeten the product.  Most of these additives and stabilizers are chemical based and even those that are not (sugar and powdered milk) aren’t particularly good for you.  Making truly natural and healthy yogurt, buttermilk and kefir allows you to consume these products without all the unhealthy extras.

Click here for more information on making your own Yogurt.

Click here for more information on making your own Kefir.

Click here for more information on making your own Buttermilk.

Julie Feickert

Julie Feickert

Julie Feickert started Cultures for Health in late 2008. She is the mother to three young children and enjoys cooking and reading. Her favorite cultured foods include water kefir and kombucha. Julie lives with her family in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

More Posts - Website