In this episode of Know Your Food with Wardee, I'm taking listener questions, including:
- how can pickles be lacto-fermented if there's no whey added
- how to find room in a tiny kitchen for traditional food processes like soaking, sprouting, fermenting
- can nuts be dried in the oven instead of dehydrator
- is my no-salt sauerkraut okay
- what to look for in cast iron
- what are recommended brands of cast iron
- Tip of the Week: Trap moles using this trap and be sure to watch this video!
- Listen in on the FREE Live Life Years Younger Telesummit (free registration). I'm speaking on August 20 on traditional methods of food preservation — both dehydrating and fermenting.
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Here are the questions I answered in this episode, in the order they're answered (in case you want to skip around). The podcast contains my answers, plus if I mentioned any additional resources, they are linked here along with the question.
Linda asked: Your garlic-dill pickle recipe in The Complete Idiot's Guide to Fermenting Foods does not call for any whey, yet it says it is a lacto-fermented food. Is this a typo or can you really make these pickles with no starter culture?
Karen asked: Thank you so much for the free lessons. I and my children enjoyed them very much. We found them encouraging and engaging. I read Sally Fallon's Nourishing Traditions cookbook a couple of years ago and we have been striving to incorporate more and more principles from it as time goes on. We do buy and enjoy raw milk and buttermilk, and we almost never have refined sugar any more. It has been easy to take on board the ideas about yummy butter and other fats! I do also make our own stock. The parts I still struggle with are soaking grains, so that was good to watch, and also making everything ourselves, especially lacto-ferments and condiments and such. I haven't been able to switch to sourdough yet either. There is still so much to explore!
Our biggest struggle is finding a place in the kitchen to house all the things that need to be “on-the-go” like buttermilk, sourdough starter, sprouts, soaking grains, etc. We live in England and have, for a family of six, by American standards, a very tiny kitchen. Even purchasing big, glass jars such as you use in the videos has been unworkable for me so far because I can't yet imagine where to keep them. This also means I will probably never be able to have certain kitchen equipment, like a dehydrator, which reminds me: Can I successfully dry out soaked nuts in my oven? I fear even the lowest setting will be too hot, and also that it will use huge amounts of electricity for the time required. I feel that it must all be possible and continue to strive toward an ideal. You have been very encouraging along our journey and I look forward to learning lots more from you.
Tami asked: I just bought and am almost finished reading your book, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Fermenting Foods. I really like your book! I have two batches of sauerkraut going. I used a starter culture I bought online. I filled the vessel with water, in addition to the 1/4 cup of culture. I did not use any salt. I also removed the lid and stirred it daily with a metal spoon. There were a few bubbles in the airlock, but only for a day or so. They have been sitting for almost a month. They smell kind of rotten but I don't know what it is suppose to smell like. Since I added the extra water (about 2 cups) without salt and introduced oxygen into it and used a metal spoon, should I assume it is no good? Or try it?
Vashti asked: Would you please be able to a blog post or podcast session about cast iron cookware, including how to look for a ‘good' brand. What makes ‘good' cast iron cookware? Surfaces? Milling? Thickness? Size? And can you please recommend some very good brands. If I'm going to have to import something from the US (which is looking likely) I'd rather know ahead of time which brand/s are the best and which will be a waste of time. It's going to cost more to ship the item/s than to purchase them, so I want the investment to be a longstanding one (that I can hopefully pass on to my kids).
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