Sourdough Starter Kvass with Lemon, Ginger, & Honey

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I’m always trying to keep up with our family’s need for more cultured foods. This is particularly important when we don’t have a mother culture like kombucha, water kefir, or milk kefir brewing. But, it does offer up an opportunity for me to be creative and use what we do have.

Fermented vegetables are always on the table, pun intended. But I wanted something fun and fizzy, without having to go to the store for ingredients I didn’t already have. I also needed something dairy-free for those in the house who can’t have it. I decided to dip my toes into the grain-based kvass world by making a light kvass from the rye sourdough starter I had on hand.

Here’s how it went.

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Shannon

Shannon is a mama to four small children, homesteader, freelance writer, and picture-taker. She lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead where they make and eat kefir, kombucha, sourdough, and fermented vegetables.

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The Role of Cultured Foods in a Sustainable Food System: Health & Energy Savings

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Previously in This Series:

So many of the wonderful properties of cultured foods are interrelated. The lactic acid in them has been found by modern day science to have many benefits, but that is also what preserves the kraut, which saves you the energy output needed for canning or freezing the cabbage instead.

And so, I thought I’d wrap this series up by discussing two more of the benefits cultured foods can bring to any food system – health and energy savings. Let me start by asking you this: what is it like to live without refrigeration and all of the other conveniences that electricity has brought to the kitchen? And what would make such a feat possible?

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Shannon

Shannon is a mama to four small children, homesteader, freelance writer, and picture-taker. She lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead where they make and eat kefir, kombucha, sourdough, and fermented vegetables.

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The Role of Cultured Foods in a Sustainable Food System: Food Preservation

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Fermentation is a funny thing; it kind of just happens. But most of us do what we can to control it. We add salt to our vegetables to keep them crisp and preserve them longer. We add specific cultures to our milk to manipulate the flavor of the end product. And we go out of our way to make it work for us.

But fermented foods as we know them, for the most part, were discovered often times by accident. And it is those accidents that we now cherish and add to our meals. But our ancestors most likely considered the best parts of these foods to not be the delicious flavors they add, but the preservation qualities of the fermented foods themselves.

This form of food preservation has been going on for generations, and for good reason. Before canning and freezing and the modern day appliances that made all of that possible, fermentation could preserve food with very little added energy or special ingredients. And that is precisely what makes it a more sustainable means of food preservation today.

Here’s what I mean.

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Shannon

Shannon is a mama to four small children, homesteader, freelance writer, and picture-taker. She lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead where they make and eat kefir, kombucha, sourdough, and fermented vegetables.

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The Role of Cultured Foods in a Sustainable Food System: Introduction

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Branching off from our series on ancestral fermentation, I thought I’d start a series on how exactly cultured foods play an integral role in a truly sustainable food system. But first, I think it’s important that we address what a sustainable food system looks like, and how the current food system is broken.

Anyone who is interested in nourishing their family probably takes an interest in avoiding GMOs, chemically sprayed foods, and improper animal husbandry. But what is the alternative and where exactly have we gone wrong?

Not long ago, things looked very different at our table, in our kitchens, and on our lands. We could point to anyone of these three places and find an enormous shift from just 100 years ago. Let’s take a look at each.

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Shannon

Shannon is a mama to four small children, homesteader, freelance writer, and picture-taker. She lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead where they make and eat kefir, kombucha, sourdough, and fermented vegetables.

More Posts - Website