Our first blog post on the benefits of kefir appeared 2 years ago and we are extremely happy that more and more pet parents are feeding this natural probiotic to their pets.
Our customers who have bought our organic milk kefir and cultured organic vegetables have given them two thumbs up. We heard first hand from them the positive experience in feeding kefir and how kefir has helped alleviate some of the allergies and digestion problems in their dogs.
Do you know that there are multitude uses for milk kefir? You can blend milk kefir into smoothies with some fruits, make kefir cheese and iced lollies for both humans and pets. A great way to use the kefir whey from making kefir cheese is to make fermented or cultured vegetables. Fermenting converts the vegetables into probiotic powerhouses that boost the number of good bacteria in the digestive tract and makes the vegetables more digestible for our pets.
And fermented vegetables not only provide a wider variety of beneficial bacteria than probiotic supplements, they also provide far more of them. About the highest level of colony-forming units you’ll find in human probiotic supplements is 10 billion. But fermented veggies produced by probiotic starter cultures can produce 10 trillion colony-forming units of bacteria. That means one human serving size of fermented veggies provides the same benefit as an entire bottle of high-potency probiotics – Dr Karen Becker
We started making our own cultured vegetables and the amazing thing is these vegetables once properly fermented, can keep in the fridge for at least 6-9 months. We add about a teaspoon of the cultured vegetables to our dog’s meals a few times a week. For humans, we add cultured vegetables to our salads, pastas and sandwiches. It is also really convenient on days when we run out of fresh vegetables and is great to bring along on outings too.
Below is a recipe for making cultured vegetables from kefir whey. If possible, use organic vegetables for maximum nutrition benefits.
Recipe for cultured vegetables
1 small cabbage, finely shredded
1 small carrot, finely shredded
1 small broccoli, cut into florets
1/4 cup kefir whey
- Place the shredded vegetables in a large mixing bowl and mix thoroughly. Transfer the shredded vegetables to a glass jar with a lid. We use glass jars from Ikea or Mason Jars, depending on the volume.
- Pack the vegetables tightly in the jar until it fills up about 3/4 of the jar. Try not to fit in too much vegetables into one jar as these may overflow during fermentation.
- Add in the kefir whey
- Top up with filtered water until the water is above 2-3 cm above the vegetables. It is important to ensure that the vegetables are fully submerged in the liquid. We normally place a couple of big cabbage leaves on top to weigh down the rest of the vegetables.
- Cover with the lid and leave on the kitchen counter for 5 days.
- Every day, open the lid and check that the vegetables are fully submerged in the liquid. Do be careful when opening the lid as the gases may have built up and overflow. Push down any vegetables which arises above the liquid.
- After 5 days, transfer the jar to the fridge, where it will continue fermenting at a slower rate.
- The cultured vegetables are ready to be eaten at this stage and can be kept in the fridge for at least 6 months.
Note: We add a pinch of Celtic sea salt to the vegetables, mix thoroughly and leave for 5 minutes. The salt helps to draw out the excess water from the vegetables and results in more crunchy fermented vegetables. However this step is optional and can be omitted.
We hope you will have fun making your own cultured vegetables. If you would like to purchase our cultured organic vegetables or organic milk kefir, do visit our website: www.pawsfurlife.com.
Remember, a healthy gut equals a healthy pet!
Paws Fur Life, canine massage & nutrition. A healthy dog is a happy dog