Turmeric is one powerful spice that definitely deserves to be in the spotlight due to the countless health benefits. It is capable of so much more than providing lots of nutrition due to its potent compound curcumin. Turmeric can treat many health conditions such as inflammation, pain, IBS, depression, and diabetes.
It can also help you whiten your teeth in an entirely natural way.
There is plenty of information about turmeric which can confuse people about its right use. The most natural form of turmeric is definitely the right choice. So, choose both organic turmeric powder or whole root turmeric and avoid the processed turmeric extracts.
So, here comes one important question worth considering. Why do people ferment vegetables and preserve them for months when there are fresh ones throughout the year? This although sounds right, it isn’t.
In the case of turmeric, you must consider three important things:
1. To absorb the curcumin in turmeric, you will need healthy saturated fats. For that purpose, you should combine fresh turmeric powder or whole root with grass-fed butter, coconut oil, sustainable palm oil, or ghee.
2. Turmeric is best combined with black pepper since the piperine enables absorption and bioavailability.
3. You will get the most out of this spice when you consume it in fermented form. According to the International Journal of Food Science and Technology, there is an increased bioavailability when turmeric is consumed fermented.
In the process of digestion, curcumin turns into various metabolites which the body can absorb more easily than the curcumin molecule itself.
One important fact to point out is that fermented foods improve digestion. So, if you feel bloated, have diarrhea/constipation, food intolerance, gas, and acid reflux, fermented turmeric will boost your digestion due to the easily absorbed compounds.
The Importance of Fermentation
The fermentation of food is a method practiced for hundreds of years. This natural process not only prolongs the shelf life of the food but it creates important b-vitamins, enzymes, antioxidants, minerals, omega-3 fatty acids, and probiotics.
In the process of lactofermentation, the bacteria feed on the sugar thus creating lactic acid. In this way, lactofermentation promotes healthy intestinal flora which boosts the gut and the immune system.
So, by consumption of fermented foods, you will get the most nutritional value out of them. In the case of turmeric, a few tablespoons of turmeric sauerkraut are the same as having fresh whole root turmeric.
Here’s how to prepare this potent sauerkraut:
Homemade Turmeric Sauerkraut
For 1-2 jars
The Ingredients You Need:
- 1 medium shredded cabbage
- 2-4 tablespoons of shredded/grated turmeric root
- 1 tablespoon Himalayan salt
- 1/8/1-4 teaspoon of ground black pepper
The Tools You Need:
- Large bowl
- Chef knife
- Cutting board
- Jars with an airlock lid
The Method of Preparation:
1. Prior to slicing the cabbage into quarters, remove the outer leaves. Then shed it into long and thin slices.
2. Place the cabbage into some stainless-steel bowl and sprinkle the salt. Put on your gloves and squeeze, massage, and knead the cabbage until it begins juicy and limp. In this way, you will break the cabbage into its cellular structure. This may take about five minutes of intense squeezing until the liquid gets out of the cabbage.
3. When you notice bubbles and juice on the surface, add pepper and turmeric. Mix the combination well.
4. Now, you can place the cabbage into a jar but make sure you press it down as tightly as you can to remove air bubbles. With a sauerkraut pounder or spoon press the cabbage so that the juice covers it completely.
In fact, the most important step for successful fermentation is that the cabbage must be submerged in the juice.
5. This is the perfect time to screw on a kraut kap which will provide an anaerobic environment and prevent the growth of bad bacteria. You can use jar lids, but there is a higher risk that your sauerkraut will turn out bad.
6. Place the jar in a dark space at room temperature in order to ferment.
7. Let it stay for one month and up to six months. The longer the sauerkraut stays, the stronger it will be.
8. If stored at room temperature, you can enjoy in the sauerkraut for up to two months while in the fridge it can be kept for six months. However, make sure you do not keep it for longer than 1 year.
According to some master fermenters, the storage in the fridge is completely unnecessary, and it can also affect the probiotics.
- Drink the juice regularly or use it as a salad dressing.
- If you notice a scum in the sauerkraut, just remove it with a spoon. The solid materials have to submerge in the liquid. Otherwise, harmful bacteria will form. So, using kraut lids and mason jars will lower the chance of microbial contamination.