Fermented foods will transform your gut health if you make them a regular part of your diet. Unfortunately, many people immediately think of sauerkraut or sugary kombucha when they hear the word ‘fermented.’ But many other common foods are fermentable, including common ingredients like ginger and garlic which can then be used to build delicious sauces and marinades. The benefits of fermentation still reach the gut even if the fermented food, itself, isn’t the star of the dish.
Furthermore, ginger and garlic provide extremely beneficial immune benefits in addition to their versatility in the kitchen. Both have been known to help fight cold and flu, and when they’re fortified in the fermentation process with probiotics, they’ll also help improve the health of your gut — ground zero of your immune system.
According to doctors and nutritionists, garlic can reduce your blood pressure, help fight cancer-causing agents, and generally detoxify the body. Ginger can help relieve nausea, improve your skin, and has been shown to help aid in weight loss. Let’s take a closer look at the fermentation process so we can create these “superfoods” in our kitchens this winter.
Fermented black garlic also tastes great if you don’t mind the intense color
To ferment garlic and ginger at home (or just about any small root vegetable), all you will need is salt, mineral water, and peeled garlic and ginger.
Here is the 5-step fermentation process:
- Clean and dry two standard glass jelly jars.
- Add the raw garlic to one jar and peeled ginger in the other (the best way to peel ginger is wet with the blunt edge of a spoon). Fill up the jar about 2/3 of the way full.
- Fill each jar with mineral water and leave a 1-inch gap at the top.
- Pour in 2 tablespoons of salt in each jar.
- Seal the lids and allow the garlic and ginger to sit for three days.
After three days you will have homemade, pickled version of fermented garlic and ginger. This is a simplified version of traditional fermentation, which involves burping the jar in order to avoid too much internal pressure. You can check out some of our favorite fermentation recipes HERE and HERE.
Try the hearty, fermented garlic on a piece of toasted bread with oil, basil, tomatoes, and shredded parmesan cheese. And the ginger works wonderfully in a fruity dressing, like this recipe which calls for pears, honey, and vinegar.
No matter how you decide to enjoy your fermented garlic and ginger, your body will thank you.