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What to do with a ton of garlic scapes?

By Jerri What to do? FERMENT THEM of course! Garlic scapes are the curly part of the garlic stalk that shoots up before garlic is ready to be harvested. You remove the scapes so that the energy for growth goes toward the bulb in its final stage, and not the upper part of the plant. They can be used just like garlic, so why not try fermenting them? I planted these last fall, with my Sarge watching for squirrels: What a difference today! So these were sitting on my counter in some water, but I just wasn’t ready to put them in a recipe. I could have refrigerated them for a few weeks, but hey, let’s see what happens when...

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Process of Fermentation

by KimYou've seen a SCOBY. Do you ever wonder how the heck that flimsy disc of jelly is the link between sugary tea and a good glass of Kombucha? Please allow us to explain the process of fermentation. We're going to use some big words, but it's not that complex a process. The work of fermentation is the conversion of sugars into acids, gasses, or alcohol. That's it. Anything else reverts to that. Interestingly, fermentation has been a naturally-occurring process since€forever. For one, it happens naturally in mammalian muscles - it's the production of lactic acid during intense exercise, i.e. when animals need energy faster than blood can supply oxygen. Humans have used it in food and drink production for...

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5 Ways to Keep Cultures Warm

by Suzanne Now that fall is upon us, you may think culturing time is over. Not at all! Some cultures like vegetables and kombucha are not quite as sensitive to lower temperatures. However, yogurt, buttermilk, sourdough, and water kefir need to be kept at least at 68ºF to culture well. There are lots of easy ways to keep cultures warm enough to continue through even the chilliest weather. For each method, test the temperature in the new culturing area to be sure it doesn't get too warm. 1. Wrap it up! Often, when the temperature is just a tad too chilly for culturing, a towel or other thick cloth wrapped around the jar does the trick. If you're a crafty...

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Tempeh? I say Temp-yay!

Let's talk Tempeh. This protein & vitamin-packed fermented food is traditionally made with soybeans, but can also be made with other beans, grains, or a combination of both. Barley & oats can even be used. It originates from Indonesia, but is used worldwide in vegan & vegetarian cuisine. A food dehydrator or other means of maintaining an 85-90 degree temperature is needed. Tempeh is made by inoculating the beans with a starter culture (basically fungus spores) that spread throughout the beans, knitting them together into a mat of white mycelium. Don't let this scare you! The spores will not take you over like Invasion of the Bodysnatchers - this stuff is good for you :) The process is surprisingly simple:...

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