Almost five years ago I tried making fermented veggies for the first time–sauerkraut with carrots–in an effort to help heal my body from Candida albicans. I used a very traditional method which required fermenting for 7 days and used no whey. It was so potent that I couldn’t handle it. At all. I dumped it out and years later the container I used still reeked of fermented cabbage. Bleh.
I think Nourishing Traditions was written for people like me. The fermentation times in the book are much shorter, which I think will suit me better. “Ginger Carrots” is recommended as the best introduction to lacto-fermented vegetables, so I decided to give it whirl.
4 cups grated carrots, tightly packed
1 Tbsp freshly grated ginger
1 Tbsp sea salt
4 Tbsp whey
The first step is to mix all ingredients in a bowl and pound with a wooden pounder or meat hammer to release juices.I have neither a pounder or a meat hammer, so I had to use a wooden spoon to pound the carrots. It took a while.
When I finally gave up, I pressed all the carrots into a quart-sized jar, at which point I realized I probably didn’t have quite as much carrots as the recipe called for.
I pressed the carrots down as well as I could with my wooden spoon, trying to drown them in their own juices, but soon realized I would need to top it of with a bit of salt water to ensure the carrots were completely covered. The salt and the water prevent nasty stuff from growing.
I screwed on the cap tightly and left it in the corner of the kitchen counter for three days before sticking it in the fridge.
It was a while later before I got brave enough to taste it. I found the flavor to be strong but not overpowering like my attempt at sauerkraut had been so many years ago. It was tolerable. Now I realize I probably needed more carrots so maybe next time it will be milder. I have been eating a small dollop on the side of my eggs in the morning. I do think it is helping me digest my food better. I just wish I actually liked it.