Well, after spending several days on the road and then spending another several days trying to get the phone company to fix our internet I am finally getting back to my correspondence and etc…
I have previously mentioned that one of our favorite beans was the pinto used heavily with Mexican dishes. A few years back, after acquiring Nourishing Traditions, I began to ferment things…we have already talked about the lactose fermented kraut. Well, once I got the hang of that I began fermenting everything to include pinto beans. At first I was afraid to do this for fear that I would be eating spoiled food. As a word of encouragement, if something you attempt to ferment spoils, you will know it by the smell. Properly fermented food has a pleasant smell not something that smells like death warmed over. (Which is what spoiled beans smell like.)
Well anyway, with GAPS we had to give up the fermented pintos. I did try fermenting Navy beans but they just were not the same. For some time I have been considering fermenting lentils. I was a bit skeptical of what they might taste like since they are completely different from pintos in texture and flavor. Well, last week I decided to give fermented lentils a try. I was more than pleasantly surprised by the texture and the taste and these will become a standard fermented food for us from now on. They take a lot less time to make (less soaking, cooking time, and fermenting) and just as yummy as fermented pinto beans although different.
To make fermented lentils you start out with a pot of freshly cooked lentils–nothing but lentils and water. I usually soak my lentils for awhile and then drain the water off rinsing them in running water and then add fresh filtered water. Then I slow cook them until they are tender…usually about an hour. After that I allow them to cool sufficiently so as not to kill the whey.
The recipe goes something like this– a pound of cooked lentils, 1 tablespoon of sea salt, 4 or more tablespoons of kefir/yogurt whey (I usually use a lot more), one small chopped onion, a crushed clove of garlic per jar. Stir it all together well and put it in a jar that has a good screw on lid. (Canning jars work perfectly for fermenting. Sit the jars in a dish pan for a couple of days on the countertop and then rinse the outside of the jars off and transfer to the refrigerator.
(Fermented food has a tendency to off gas out of the lids which push some fluid out of the jars and can make a horrible mess and smell. Please make sure your lids are on tight, I have had jars of pinto beans blow their lids off and we’ve had to scrub beans off the ceiling. Not a fun job.)
My family likes their fermented beans with breakfast as a side to their eggs but they go well with most meals. And very good with salsa.