DIY





Sea Stag Fermented Sauerkraut from The Brinery


| 9/1/2017 10:53:00 AM



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Getting nutritious and flavorful fermented foods are easy in Ann Arbor, Michigan, thanks, in part, to The Brinery, another of the thriving food enterprises in this community.

With a tag line of “Stimulating your inner economy,” The Brinery’s naturally fermented sauerkraut, hot sauces and seasonal pickles, including cucumbers and asparagus, are 100-percent fermented, so you’ll need to keep them refrigerated. Worth noting, these live culture fermented food products are different than the high acid cottage food products that do not require refrigeration because when the cottage food products are canned, the fermentation process is stopped.

The convivial, bearded and grinning Chief Fermenting Officer, David Klingenberger, swells with enthusiasm, intimate knowledge of the microbial world and passion for ferments.  With his business, he’s serious about scaling up, supporting local farmers and helping people lead healthier lives by eating more fermented foods. But he’s more than willing to share some of his secrets and recipes (see below).

No heat canning and vinegar pickling here. The Brinery uses lacto-fermention of their vegetables in large food-grade containers, It’s a low-energy way of letting bacteria do the work. Fermenting actually retains vitamins, produces beneficial lactobacillus, and predigests some of the plant material, making more nutritive elements available to our bodies.



As many homesteaders know, making a batch of sauerkraut is easy, affordable and fun, especially if you have many helping hands. The ancient art of food preservation is rather simple – and safe.  Only fresh vegetables, a natural salt brine and a crock are needed. As for safety, the salt and anaerobic environment in your fermenting crock stifle harmful bacteria and prevent decay with the beneficial lactobacillus bacteria multiplying to eat the sugars in the veggies, converting them to lactic acid and carbon dioxide -- the signature bubbles and sour taste that characterizes fermented foods.



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