Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Spring Tangine

1 large bunch mustard or other greens, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2 tblsp. olive oil
1 teasp. salt
1 large fennel bulb, chopped
2 cloves garlic
1 1/2 lbs. ground lamb (or stew meat would work also)
2 teasp. ground cumin
1 teasp. ground coriander
1/2 teasp. cinnamon
1/2 teasp. ginger
1 lb rhubarb stalks, sliced
2 tblsp sorghum syrup or other sweetener

Boil the greens in a large pot of water for 2 minutes for a milder flavor, drain and set aside.  Brown the onion in the olive oil, then when half cooked add the fennel.  Saute until the fennel starts to soften.  Add the garlic and saute a minute or so longer.  Set aside the onion/fennel mixture and brown the lamb in the same pan.  When the lamb is partly cooked add spices, then add the onion/fennel mixture, the greens, and the rhubarb, and stir.  Cook in 300 degree oven for 30-45 minutes.  Sweeten to taste.

Saturday, April 09, 2016

Beet Kvass

But I changed it so much that I will write down my own.

A Quart Jar of Beet Kvass:

Cut up a small wedge of cabbage into one to two inch chunks, enough to fill the bottom couple of inches of a quart jar

Add a couple of small slices of ginger

Add two medium sized beets (scrubbed in cold water but not peeled or cooked) cut into 1 to 2 inch chunks, enough to fill the jar 1/2 to 2/3 full

Add 2 teaspoons of natural salt.  I use fine ground Redmond Real Salt, which is reasonably priced and not purified

Fill with well, filtered or spring water to 1 inch from the top of the jar.

Cover (see notes below) and let sit at cool room temperature 3-5 days, then strain and drink the liquid.  The beets can be used a second time (I filled the jar back up with water and added 1 teaspoon of salt) or cooked.

The salt and the acid produced by the fermentation mean you don’t have to worry about botulism.  The way this kind of ferment will go bad is that it will grow mold, and if that happens it is safest to throw the whole thing out.  Things that help prevent mold:
  Make sure there aren’t little bits of cabbage or anything else floating on the surface (keep your cabbage pieces large and put the beets on top to hold them down)
  If you have problems with mold you can increase the amount of salt to a tablespoon, particularly if you are using kosher salt.  If you want to use less than 2 teaspoons of salt try a tablespoon of raw honey and one teaspoon of salt, but be aware that a sweeter ferment produces more alcohol.
  Use a lid that lets the gasses produced by fermentation out and doesn’t let oxygen in.  My current favorite is: http://www.masontops.com/products/pickle-pipe.  You can also get plastic mason jar tops drilled for a beermakers airlock or just use a two part metal lid and screw it down firmly but not all the way tight (or a clamp style lid that isn’t extremely tight).
  Put the jar in a dark place like a cabinet.  The ideal temperature is in the low to mid 60s, but warmer or cooler temperatures will mostly affect the speed at which it ferments—taste it and see when it is to your liking
A thin whitish layer on the surface, if it is not fuzzy, is ok.  That is kvam yeast.