Arriving home from grocery shopping, I take ten minutes to start my pickles.
With my bottle of probiotics getting dangerously low, (I’ve taken them more regularly since being on vacation than I ever used to) I’ll need a new source of digestive enzymes pretty quickly.
Thank you lactic fermentation.
Fermenting your own pickles is easy, and a perfect way to add both flavour and nutrients to your diet, especially in winter. For more information about specifics on fermenting, and an awesome kimchi recipe, go here.
After tucking my pickles onto the pantry shelf for nature to work her magic, I spend 15 minutes slicing vegetables, grating lemon rind, and seasoning my coleslaw. Prep for today is done. Half an hour in the kitchen equals the start of happy bacteria for my digestion (plus a crunchy, tasty condiment) and enough coleslaw for the next couple of days.
Saturday there is chicken stock to make, I put it on while the wind howls outsideand water simply pours from the sky. A good night for soup. I let the stock simmer with celery root and onion for just two hours, before turning it into a rich and warming lentil soup. It feels good to put something so wholesome and simple into our bodies on a day like this, all of us with colds either on the way in or out.
Extra stock gets frozen for next week, as there are many more winter days and nights full of soup to go before spring is here.
Sunday I roast half of my head of cauliflower, and blanch the other half to freeze and eat next week. I start by preheating the oven; then putting on a pot of water to boil; slicing the cauliflower; washing it; and drying half and putting it in a roasting pan with smoked paprika, olive oil and salt. By this point the oven is preheated and my water is boiling. While the cauliflower is cooking I start my puréed beets.
By using cooking time and planning ahead, it’s easy to minimize the amount of time spent in the kitchen, while maximizing pre-prepped food. Later tonight I’ll make a simple and satisfying loaf, enough for snacks all week long.