I have been making Kvass this week, it is basically lacto-fermented raw beetroot cubes with added water, the resulting deep red liquid is taken in small doses internally for its health benefits.
Beetroot is a powerhouse of nutrition packed full of vitamins and minerals, however it is higher in natural sugars than any other root vegetable, when fermented, enzymes and beneficial bacteria consume the sugars to make the nutrients more bioavailable. Beetroot is particularly good for heart health, blood production and it is even said to lower blood pressure; anecdotal evidence suggests that is especially beneficial for the Liver.
Taste-wise, the Kvass is a little sour, sweet and salty all at the same time. In Chinese Medicine, the sour taste directs foods to the Liver, the sweet taste to the Spleen and salty to the Kidneys. So you can see already that it is quite a well balanced tonic for all three organs.
Although it’s origins are not Chinese, as an integrated health practitioner, I prefer to mix the best from all traditional health concepts regardless of where they originate.
We have all heard the saying “you are what you eat,” and the famous quote by Hippocrates: “Let food be thy medicine.”
Asian countries have a long history of using fermented foods including miso, tempeh, kimchi, natto etc. In the West also, particularly Eastern European countries have traditions such as Sourdough, Kefir, Sauerkraut and Kvass.
Before refrigeration was available these processes were used to preserve staple foods so that they were available during the colder seasons when there was less produce, however as they have been shown to be a valuable resource nutritionally, the tradition continues today and the consumption seems to be gaining popularity.
Regular intake of fermented vegetables will improve digestion, resolve bloating and compliment intestinal health. Important research is currently exploring the associations between gut health and cognitive function.
In Chinese Medicine dietary guidelines, over-indulgence of fermented foods can result in ‘dampness,’ typically noticed as excess mucous, a heavy feeling, diarrhoea and sluggishness.
So these foods should be enjoyed in small doses, as an accompaniment to meals, on a daily basis.
I am trying to improve my diet with fermented foods which are good for your gut flora.
Tsukemono (漬物) means pickles. Japanese people love pickled vegetables. In my home town Akita, which is at the northern part of main island of Japan. It’s extremely cold in Winter. Vegetable are traditionally preserved to use throughout the winter months.
A few month ago, I was attended a Nukazuke workshop held here in Melbourne. Nuka-zuke (糠漬け) is a type of Japanese pickles which have been fermented in flavored rice bran. (Nuka means Rice bran) Nutrient rich bran-pickled-vegetables have been supplementing important vitamins and minerals to the Japanese diet for hundreds of years. I used to make Nukazuke many years ago, but I stopped. It can be hard work the Nuka-doko (pickling bed) needs to be kneaded daily for successful fermentation.
That workshop inspire me a lot. So I stared again 🙂
Traditional Nukadoko (pickling bed) is made of equal weight of rice bran and water & Sea salt (13% in weight of rice bran). But it’s hard to get good fresh rice bran.
Today, I will explain how to make easy ‘cheats’ Nukadoko (pickling bed) at home.
My cheat version of nukadoko is made from old bread (preferable Sourdough), Beer & Sea salt (About 10~13% in weight of bread). However, this recipe doesn’t use Nuka (Rice bran) at all, so we can’t call this Nukadoko, Actually 😉
1) Make bread crumb, use food processor or you can cut them into small dices.
2) Mix bread crumb with salt in clean container. And then mix with beer for a hard mud texture. Cover and keep in a cool dark place or in fridge.
3) Once you have prepared the medium, add cleaned left over vegetables (even peel & stems) to introduce lactic acid. (If you want to more flavour add dried red chili peppers or dried kombu or even garlic).
4) For the first 3~4 days, mix the bed with your hand twice a day. After 3~4 days, discard the wilted leftover vegetables and replace with fresh vegetables.
5) About a week later, your cheat bread nukadoko is ready to pickle! Salt rub with veggies and leave it about 5min, then dry excess moisture with Paper towels. Then put them into the mixture and cover them.
It’s depend how long does it take to pickle. Hard vegetable like carrot or daikon usually It take about 1~2 days. Longer pickle time make it more salty & sour. Check the timing with your taste buds. Preferable store in fridge.
Please remember mix nukadoko everyday or every 2 days.
Usually we pickle fresh crisp veggies like carrots, cucumber, daikon or turnip.
My personal favourite is cucumber (However you should get hard & crisp one otherwise it gets very soggy pickle – Try asian type cucumber) & Stalk of Broccoli.
The workshop lecturer recommended to pickle Okra and dried Shiitake mushrooms. It’s very tasty too, and full of healthy probiotics!
[LINK] ~Found great informations of Nukadzuke from internet
*How to make Nukazuke [hangawara]
Eastential Chinese Medicine, David Yao Chi Guan, Four Seasons Wellness Centre, Shinma Acupuncture, Acuuncture Abbotsford Convent, Abbotsford Medical & Acupuncture Centre,
I made my 1st home made miso about 4 month ago. Yesterday I made Instant miso soup balls. Just mix together, Miso, bonito flakes, dried seaweed etc. (I’ve added black sesame seeds as well. – If you want to put vegetables in it – cook them 1st, otherwise miso soup balls will get too wet) Wrap one big table spoon sized mixture with cling wrap and freeze it!! easy hah?
When you want to have Miso soup, just put the ball in the bowl, add hot water! There is no preservative or MSG, it’s all natural stuff. Good foods & clean air make good Qi! Good Qi makes you better!! Have a bowl of Miso soup. Keep warm yourself & don’t get cold 🙂 . #healthy #rootandbranchorientaltherapies #shiatsumasa #miso #fermentedfoods #abbotsford #cliftonhill #melbourne #melbournewellness #misoballs #misosoup #natural #qi #goodfoods #misodama #misoshiru
Eastential Chinese Medicine, David Yao Chi Guan, Four Seasons Wellness Centre, Shinma Acupuncture, Acuuncture Abbotsford Convent, Abbotsford Mehttps://rootandbranchorientaltherapies.com/2016/11/shiatsu_massage_melbourne/dical & Acupuncture Centre
In Eastern Europe where Borscht it is a staple food, it is said that ‘Eating Borscht is as good as having a blood transfusion!’
Beetroot is an incredibly rich source of nutrients, combined with the gut healing benefits of bone broth and honestly I can’t think of any food, which would be a more complete source of nutrition! Almost anyone would benefit from the goodness, but it is a particularly good all round recipe to have weekly for anyone who is considering maximising fertility. It can be served at room temperature on a hot summers day with a dollop of natural Greek yoghurt and some griddle-toasted sourdough with a lightly salted cultured butter!
There are many recipes online for bone broth, you can use anything from chicken wings to marrow bones, or even ox tails; of course organic bones are the best choice. I like to pressure-cook the soup as it dramatically reduces the time to make the stock. It is very similar to making normal soup stock, however the extra pressure or time will extract the nutrients from the bone marrow, which makes the stock so nutrient dense.
Ingredients for Bone Broth:
Water (double the volume of bones.)
2-3 Tablespoons of Apple Cider Vinegar (important to maximise marrow extraction.)
2-3 Tablespoons of Fish Sauce (replaces the need for salt.)
Herbs to taste such as star anise, bay leaf, black pepper, fresh garlic and ginger.
When you chill the stock it will turn gelatinous due to the marrow content, and the excess fat can be skimmed from the top prior to using it for the soup.
The next step is to make the Beetroot soup…
Ingredients for Borscht:
2 medium sized onions.
3-4 fresh & firm raw beetroots, peeled & diced.
2 large carrots peeled & diced.
1 large handful – roughly cut cabbage hearts.
Sautee the onions, add the chopped vegetables and cover with bone broth, simmer for 30-40 minutes until the vegetables are soft. That’s it; of course you can make additions yourself to taste. You can puree the soup for a smoother consistency or consume it in its chunky form. Eat it hot or at room temperature, traditionally it is topped with sour cream and chives, but natural yoghurt is equally tasty and better on the waistline!
Eastential Chinese Medicine, David Yao Chi Guan, Four Seasons Wellness Centre, Shinma Acupuncture, Acuuncture Abbotsford Convent, Abbotsford Medical & Acupuncture Centre