beet salad

Cultured veggies are sort of like pickled veggies, except better and more delicious. Instead of preserving vegetables by pickling them in vinegar, culturing involves live healthy bacteria – sort of like the bacteria that turn milk into yogurt. They help digestion and they help immunity AND instead of just trying to preserve the healthiness of the vegetables with vinegar, they enhance they healthiness of the veggies! The Farmhouse Culture brand, which is new in our store, says, “Happy Kraut, Happy You.”

This salad is fast to make. Sure, you can make substitutions, but every ingredient here has a purpose. Beets, for instance, are cleansing. Cucumbers quench thirst, and like other veggies, are alkalizing. Sumac, a spice with a lemony taste, has antimicrobial properties, and helps with digestion as well.

Makes 8 dinner-size servings:

2 C cultured veggies of your choice* ½ C extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
3 celery ribs, sliced (about 2 C) ¼-½ C lemon juice (another ¼ C if you want)
1 English cuke, quartered lengthwise, sliced 1 Tbsp Middle Eastern sumac
2 C baby kale or 2 C sliced baby bok choy 2 Tbsp nutritional or brewer’s yeast
1 C red onion diced, or 4 cloves garlic pressed 1 small bunch flat parsley, minced
1 small beet, grated, about 1-2 C  Optional: 1-2 C crumbled goat feta or soft white goat cheese, or 1 C chopped walnuts or ½ C hemp hearts 
Add cultured veggies* to a big glass or ceramic bowl (of course, use the liquid since it’s a super juice!) Add remaining ingredients except the cheese, walnuts or hemp seeds, and toss with your hands. If you choose a cultured veggie that already has beets, skip the shredded beet listed in the ingredients above.

Find sumac in our spice bins, and nutritional or brewer’s yeast (a rich source of the B-vitamins for nerves and stress; brewer’s yeast is also said to help prevent the breakdown of collagen!) in our bulk bins or in the supplement department. This yeast does not cause or encourage Candida…

Taste salad, adjust seasoning. Add another glug of EVOO, if your taste buds tell you “Yes!” Add goat cheese or chopped walnuts or hemp hearts, if you want. Give a delicate toss and plate.

*The brands we carry are Real Pickles, Wild Brine, and now Farmhouse Culture ,who make a delicate, refined horseradish-leek flavor that I adore. Jeff, in the kitchen, said that he was surprised how mild but delish the horseradish-leek flavor is. Since we have Farmhouse Culture on sale in April, it’s a great time to try their varieties of sauerkraut!