The process of fermentation isn't hard at all; in fact, everything you need to produce fermented foods can be easily found in the kitchen. (h/t to HomesteadSurvivalSite.com.)
Fermentation is a process wherein organic compounds are converted into alcohols or acids by bacteria. The fact that bacteria are involved in this process might be alarming but these are harmless bacteria and are even beneficial to the body. Fermenting foods is very easy to do. All you need is the starting fruit, vegetable, grain, or milk, and the ingredients that trigger fermentation. These include the following:
Combine the starting food item with your chosen active ingredient inside a tightly closed jar and leave it in an area where the temperature falls between 60-70 F. If conditions are cooler, it could reduce the activity of the microbes. Higher temperatures are also bad especially since fermentation itself generates heat. Too much heat can kill the good microbes and increase the production of higher alcohols that can cause headaches. To prevent unwanted increases in temperature, store the fermentation jar in places like the basement or pantry where it won't be subjected to direct sunlight. However, it is also important to take the jar out and "burp" it once a day for at least a few weeks to release carbon dioxide, which is a waste product of fermentation. If this is done indoors then it could leave unpleasant odors that can linger for some time.
Fermented foods are rich in good bacteria called probiotics that are extremely beneficial for a person's health. Once ingested, these bacteria are added to the existing gut microbial flora and contribute to the following health benefits. (Related: Improving the immune-enhancing properties of cordyceps mushrooms through fermentation with probiotics.)
Fermenting your foods is not just an easy way to prolong their life, it's also a delicious way of enjoying all of these health benefits. For more articles about self-sufficient living, visit Homesteading.news.