How to Ferment; Kimchi

Kimchi is a traditional Korean ferment. There are hundreds of variations using cabbage, radish, scallion or cucumber as the main ingredient. The paste can contain a variety of ingredients. There may be more than 187 different varieties, all from different regions of Korea. Traditional ingredients will may use garlic, ginger, red pepper, some also add sugar, vinegar, fish sauce or paste to add to their recipe. Families will pass on their different seasonal varieties and they are traditionally buried in the ground to ferment.

Traditionally made by brining the vegetables and then mixing in a paste before packing it into a fermentation vessel to become full of probiotic bacteria and flavour.Kimchi Loula Natural

Fermented cabbage has a long history of providing benefits for many different health conditions (see my sauerkraut here and a flavoured version here). The fermentation process produces the living probiotic microorganisms that are beneficial to the digestive and immune system, plus making nutrients in the foods being fermented come to life and are more accessible.

The fermentation process increases the bioavailability of nutrients rendering Kimchi even more nutritious than the original starting points.Brining Kimchi Loula Natural

Salt is one of the most amazing natural products. Hugely beneficial to the body when consumed in the right way. I am often asked which salt to use- these are my salts of choice:

Sea salt – originates from drying the sea water in the sun, salt lakes or other methods. This is what I prefer and generally prefer those from Wales, France or Scotland. Sea salt nutrients can vary and may contain up to 80 or more minerals than table salt (which is refined down to one or two) it will hugely depend on where the sea salt was obtained.  In addition to sodium and chlorine, you are likely to find potassium, phosphorus, calcium, sulfur. Trace minerals in sea salt can include iron, iodine, manganese, zinc, bromine, boron, copper. 

Pink Himalayan salt – this salt is traditionally harvested in the Pakistan  side of the Himalayan mountain range and the pink colour may be due to the salt containing iron oxide. Harvested from caves of ocean salt settled into geological pockets. It is an unrefined, unprocessed raw mineral, mainly mined by hand. The salt can be up to 250 million years old, which is pretty cool! Its nutrient content is similar to sea salt (since they both originated from the sea). 

I use these two salts in fermenting, in cooking, in the bath, as a scrub, as salt lamps and also on the carpets to help deep clean them. 

Kimchi
This is a basic Kimchi recipe. There are around 187 different variations of Kimchi, this one uses Chinese cabbage, daikon radish and carrot. I have made this one sugar free and suitable for vegans and vegetarians as it is also seafood free.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 head of Chinese cabbage thinly sliced
  2. 1 daikon radish thinly sliced
  3. 2 carrots thinly sliced
  4. 1.5% weight sea salt/ pink Himalayan salt
  5. 10 garlic cloves
  6. 1 ½ inches fresh ginger
  7. 1 ½ tbsp. Korean red pepper
  8. 1tsp coconut sugar (optional)
  9. 1tsp Fish sauce or water
  10. 1tsp fish paste (you can also use seaweed)
Instructions
  1. Weigh cabbage, radish and carrot to work out how much salt is needed.
  2. Try and retain one of the out side leaves for later. Add the thinly sliced cabbage to a non reactive bowl (plastic or ceramic)..
  3. Weigh and add the salt to the vegetable in water. Mix into the cabbage with your hands to massage and work in the salt. Leave for 1-8 hours.
  4. Make the paste by adding the remaining ingredients to a mini chopper and pulsing until a paste.
  5. Drain the vegetables from the brine, taste to determine saltiness. (note the saltiness will mellow). Rinse if necessary.
  6. Wearing gloves, mix in the paste, massaging the vegetables.
  7. Add to your fido jar pushing the vegetables down with a wooden spoon, potato masher or fingers. You will notice the brine being created and rising up to the top of the cabbage.
  8. When all the vegetables are in the jar then you place the retained cabbage leaf on the top- this will ensure all the stray bits remain under the brine. You may weigh down the cabbage with either ceramic baking beads, marbles, rocks or a shot glass. This step is not compulsory but does help the first few days of fermenting as it makes it easy to continue to push the kraut down to keep the cabbage in the brine.
  9. Leave for 1-2 weeks on the counter and taste, depending on the temperature and humidity levels of your fermenting spot- leave for up to 28 days. Ferment to taste so continue to taste and then refrigerate when you like it!
Notes
  1. It is optional to use 1tsp fish paste, you can also use seaweed in the paste.
Loula Natural http://loulanatural.com/
 Mixing in paste Loula Natural

Here is my video on how to make the paste to add to your vegetables:

When it comes to flavoring your Kimchi the only limitations are what you have available!

You can add anything. Play with other root vegetables, using vinegar, fish sauce and other spices in your paste (like turmeric, cumin or coriander).

Kimchi is added to most foods, soups, noodles, stews, pancakes and so on. It is really nice mixed in to sauces like BBQ, mayo and ketchup. Kimchi is also delicious with cheese and also eggs…

Kimchi Cheese on toast Loula Natural

Weaning Recipes from Nurture Your Life

Untitled designWeaning Recipes Loula Natural fi

Weaning Recipes Loula Natural fb

Weaning Recipes

Have your read my new REAL FOOD way to wean your child? Its called Nurture Your Life (link here). These weaning recipes are all featured in the book. 

My new weaning book
My new weaning book

Here are all the recipes with their links from the book. Let me know your favourite!

First foods:

(4-8 months depending on child’s ability to sit up)

Fish eggs

Bone Broth

Coconut Yoghurt

Parsnip rice (steamed of stirfried in Ghee)

Sweet Potato/carrot Chips (cut into battons and lightly steamed or baked tossed in coconut oil.

Sweet Potato mash

Sweet potato Rosti

Steamed broccoli

Sliced avocado

Sliced pear

Scrambled egg yolks (separate the eggs and scramble the yolks in a little ghee)

Mashed banana

Water or coconut water kefir

Green smoothies (make with powdered greens and fresh coconut water or water kefir)

Fermented green beans

Apple Sauce

Rhubarb and ginger sauce

Oat milk/ Coconut milk

Miso soup

Seaweed snacks (ensure the ingredients contain healthy fats and no MSG)

 

6-12 months

Popcorn chicken

Cauliflower Crust Pizza

Falafel

Coconut and ginger chicken soup

Sweet Potato Falafel (use flax/chia as an egg replacer until 12 months or just use egg yolk)

Cauliflower Cheese nuggets (same advice as above for eggs)

Beef Jerky made with thinly sliced beef

Kefir/Kombucha gummies

Chia porridge (use breast, coconut or oat milk) with coconut yoghurt

Banana Flax Crackers or quinoa flatbreads serve with:

Salmon pate

Coconut butter/yoghurt

Hummus add some fermented garlic for an added fermented kick

Tahini and avocado

Rasperries/blackberries/watermelon/mango (mango seeds are great for kids to suck on)

Mango Chia jam

Fat banana custard (before 12 months only use the egg yolks)

Chocolate Avocado pudding

Homemade Chocolate

Balls of Energy (until 12months use only seeds)

 

12-18 months

based on elimination diet protocols can start to introduce egg white, nuts, raw honey. (Try to keep grains to a minimum or traditionally prepared and served with something fermented until 2years)

 

Blender Waffles/Blender pancakes

Egg Muffins

Grain free granola (until you have checked nuts you can just use a variety of seeds; pumpkin, sesame, sunflower, chia and ground flax. Try this salty cinnamon flavour

Breakfast in a glass smoothie

Slow cooked apple, rhubarb and ginger porridge (serve with coconut yoghurt)

Almond milk

Nate’s Kefir Blueberry Mawfins

Weaning Recipes Loula Natural 

How to ferment; Beetroot and Ginger Sauerkraut

Untitled designBeet and Ginger Kraut Loula Natural fi
Beetroot and Ginger Sauerkraut Loula Natural

Basic Sauerkraut is so delicious (see my how to here). I have it with eggs, add it so my coleslaw (kraut slaw here) and try to have it with any meat dish as a side. The sour flavour works well to stimulate gastric acids too so it a great primer for any fat, protein rich foods.

kraut with food

Since cabbage has so many health giving properties (read here), combining it with beetroot and ginger makes so much sense. The rich, sweetness and earthiness of the beetroot goes so well with the heat of the ginger and the sourness of the kraut. It hits all of the senses on the palate and really satisfy the taste buds.

Of course the rich myriad of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and blood boosting qualities of the beetroot with the anti-inflammatory, warming and nourishing properties of ginger are made even more available to the body with the fermentation process. The presence of a well balanced symbiosis of bacteria allows the body access to these nutrients, to absorb and use them to help promote wellbeing and healing.

Start in the same way as you would with the basic sauerkraut. When the cabbage and salt have been massaged together, combine the beetroot and ginger (I have used raw and powdered ginger and both work well) before packing it all into your jar.

Beetroot and Ginger Sauerkraut
A rich nutritious flavouring of sauerkraut. Great to assist in the body's wellbeing and healing process. Really good to help digestion of fat or protein rich foods in a meal.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 whole green cabbage thinly sliced
  2. 1 whole red cabbage thinly sliced
  3. 1.5% Salt
  4. 1 raw beetroot grated
  5. 1 inch of fresh ginger grated or 1tbsp of dried ginger
Instructions
  1. Retain 1/2 of the outside cabbage leaves for later.
  2. Make sauerkraut by mixing the cabbage with the salt. Massage the cabbage until it starts to wilt and release water.
  3. Add and combine the grated beetroot and ginger.
  4. Press the mixture into a fido (airtight sealable jar) jar and keep pressing down to release liquid.
  5. When the mixture is all in the jar and there is liquid covering the top, press down the outside cabbage leaves to keep any stray bits of cabbage from floating to the surface of the liquid.
  6. Seal and leave to ferment on the counter for a week-28 days. Keep tasting the kraut every few days.
  7. Put in the fridge for an additional week.
  8. Enjoy!
Notes
  1. You can flavour your kraut in this way with anything you choose! be creative!
Loula Natural http://loulanatural.com/
If you like fermented recipes come and checkout my dedicated board on pinterest:

 

 

Beetroot and Ginger Sauerkraut Loula Natural pin

Coconut and Turmeric Popcorn Chicken

Untitled design Coconut and Turmeric Popcorn chicken Loula Natural fi

Popcorn Chicken Loula Natural

Coconut and Turmeric Popcorn Chicken

My son is not a fan of meat- AT ALL. It doesn’t bother me too much as he has lots of stock (bone broth) on a daily basis. He also has a broad spectrum of healthy fats over the day. Animal protein is important and if he ate eggs then I would relax, but he doesn’t. If I am not careful he would just eat carbs all day (like most kids) but then I would pay the price with his behaviour (moaning, anger, weepy and destructive!). 

My quest for lunchbox foods also continues- this one really fits the bill too as they are bite size and nice hot or cold. They will be perfect party food, picnic foods and travel snacks. The fact that they are easy to make is also a huge bonus!

There are just 3 steps;

Cut and soak; Soaking the chicken keeps it really moist and tender

popcorn chicken soak Loula Natural

Shake; shaking it in coconut flour and almond flour/coconut gives it a good crust

popcorn chicken shake Loula Natural and bake (or shallow fry in butter); 

popcorn chicken bake Loula Natural

 He loves them and calls them popcorn! I love that they are packed full of goodness and healthy fats! Bonus is my daughter also loves them and asks for them for lunch. Wining all round! You can add a variety of spices to the chicken, personally I like curry powder in mine, it is delicious with the coconut milk. 

Tumeric and Coconut Popcorn Chicken
This is a great chicken recipe, full of healthy fats and packed with flavour. Coconut and turmeric make this grain free, paleo friendly recipe delicious and nutritious.
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Ingredients
  1. 250g Chicken thigh meat
  2. 1/2 can of coconut milk
  3. 1-2 tsp Turmeric powder or grated fresh turmeric
  4. salt and pepper
  5. 3tbsp Desiccated coconut/almond flour
  6. 2tbsp Coconut flour
Instructions
  1. Cut chicken meat into small bite size pieces and place in a glass container (with a lid). Pour over coconut milk and add turmeric, salt and pepper. Replace lid and shake. Leave to marinade in the fridge overnight
  2. Put coconut/almond and flour into a ziplock bag. Pour in chicken and shake bag until all the pieces are covered. Pour contents out onto baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil.
  3. Bake at 200 degree C for 20-25 mins until chicken is fully cooked.
  4. Chicken can be frozen at this time if desired. To reheat, thaw completely and heat some ghee/butter in a pan and reheat chicken until hot through.
  5. Chicken can also be fried in butter or olive oil or in an airfryer
Notes
  1. these are great cold or hot. Serve with some fermented ketchup or mayo, sweet potato chips or a big colourful salad.
Loula Natural http://loulanatural.com/
Popcorn Chicken Loula Natural pin

Blender Waffles

Blender Waffles Loula Natural

When I was 20 I went to the U.S.A to be a camp counsellor in New Haven, Connecticut. I absolutely loved it. I was there for almost 3 months, 8 weeks at camp and then almost 4 weeks traveling as south as South Carolina (I absolutely loved Charleston) and as north as Toronto. I was introduced to many new culinary species on that trip (man the American’s have rubbish cheese and chocolate- well they did in those days my blogger friends insist things have changed!) but the thing that stuck for me was waffles with maple syrup and bacon. Stuck-like-glue, I just love the salty sweet combination.

Over the years I always ordered it in a restaurant and make pancakes all the time but waffles always seemed like such a faff. NOT ANYMORE! 

Blender Waffles action Loula Natural

Blender waffles she says! My pancake making days were instantly changed when I found blender pancakes, the mix of healthy fats and protein in the eggs and almond/coconut flour, plus the natural sweetness of the banana has given my kids pancakes way more often- even on school days! Grain free too which make these perfect for me and my family. So I took this combo and played with the consistency and thus blender waffles are born!

I now make 2 different types; Chocolate Waffles (very rich chocolatey flavour with zero added sugar) and Vanilla Waffles. I have included both for you- you’re welcome!

Vanilla Blender Waffles
A gluten-free and super simple waffle recipe. All you need is a blender and 5 simple ingredients!
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Ingredients
  1. 6 eggs (pasture raised if possible)
  2. 3 medium banana's
  3. 3 tbsp coconut flour
  4. 5 tbsp almond/oat flour
  5. 1 tbsp collagen hydrolysate
  6. 1/2 tsp Vanilla
  7. pinch of pink Himalayan salt
Instructions
  1. Add all of the ingredients to the blender and blitz on high until smooth. Pour into a heated waffle iron. Close waffle iron and cook for 4.5 minutes.
Notes
  1. I love to serve mine with bacon, maple syrup, almond butter and banana.
Loula Natural http://loulanatural.com/
 Here are the chocolate ones! These are nice served with cream and berries.

Waffle Iron Loula Natural

Chocolate Blender Waffles
Rich, bitter cacao with the natural sweetness of banana. Full of healthy fats and protein. Blender waffles are super simple and only have 7 ingredients that you probably have in your house. Grain free these are paleo friendly.
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Ingredients
  1. 6 eggs (pasture raised if possible)
  2. 3 medium banana's
  3. 3 tbsp coconut/almond flour
  4. 7 tbsp /raw cacao powder
  5. 1 tbsp collagen hydrolysate
  6. 1/2 tsp Vanilla
  7. dash of milk/water kefir
  8. pinch of pink Himalayan salt
Instructions
  1. Add all of the ingredients to the blender and blitz on high until smooth. Pour into heated waffle iron and cook for 4.5 minutes.
Notes
  1. I like to serve these black forrest style, with whipped cream or coconut cream and cherries or mixed berries.
Loula Natural http://loulanatural.com/
Let me know if you try them…

Blender Waffles Loula Natural Pin

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