what is lacto-fermentation

Lacto-fermentation is when fermentation happens in an anaerobic environment. An anaerobic environment is created with a salt water brine. Lacto-fermentation is when respiration occurs without oxygen.  Bacteria are responsible for the fermentation of vegetables. Lactobacillus make energy and
respire without oxygen in your jar or crock and produce lactic acid as a byproduct.

What do I need to get started?

Fermentation requires nothing more than a mason jar and salt.  However, while it does not require particularly specialized equipment, there are some amazing gadgets out there that can certainly make preparing and fermenting even easier!  My thoughts?  Start simply and work your way up!

Are all sauerkraut brands legit?

Unortunately, depending on what brand of sauerkraut you buy, there’s no guarantee that your jar is actually packed with nutrients and probiotics. Most store-bought sauerkraut is typically pasteurized, using heat that kills the probiotics. You find these primarily on the shelves unrefrigerated. Some companies place their pasteurized sauerkraut in the refrigerated section.  Besides lacking in the probiotics they claim to have, the majority of store-bought brands contain preservatives and added sugars.  It is much easier to make your own and know that you will get the nutritive benefits from consuming it!

 

Is Lacto-Fermentation safe?

There are no actual cases of food poisoning associated with raw unpasteurized sauerkraut.  This is awesome! Because it is an ancient technique of preservation, this product is incredibly safe and was utilized as a way to keep fresh veggies around even before refrigerators were developed.  Its all about learning safe fermentation techniques to have consistent, healthy and tasty ferments!

Is sauerkraut made the same way as pickles?

Unlike sauerkraut and kimchi, there are many vegetables that require a saltwater solution to create the anaerobic environment necessary to ferment.  Some examples of this are cucumbers/pickles,
dilly beans, peppers, carrots, okra, and many more.  The primary difference from the fermentation in sauerkraut is that the salt levels in pickle making are higher, between 5% and 8%.

do all fermented foods contain probiotics?

Not all fermented foods have probiotics. That said, almost all ferments have incredible healing powers and advantageous elements.