Homemade fermented onions are excellent choice for your health. Different cultures around the world practice the fermentation for centuries. This process was used for creating some national dishes and secret foods. Lacto-fermentation is actually the process through which the most familiar fermented foods are made.
What is actually Lacto-Fermentation?
“Lacto” refers to Lactobacillus. Strains of these bacteria are in fact present on the surface of the plants. They are also common for the human’s mouths, gastrointestinal tracts and vaginas. The name of the bacteria is Lactobacillus because it was initially discovered in milk ferments. These bacteria in fact mostly use lactose as well as other sugars, converting them into lactic acid. Lactic acid has its ability to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.
Here are the health benefits of Lacto-Fermentation:
Enhance Nutrients Absorption and Improve Digestion
Fermented foods are extremely beneficial for our health. One of the main benefits is that our body absorbs the nutrients for healing more easily. In this way, we can help the digestive tract and improve our digestion. Our gut needs healthy bacteria. When we supply it with these bacteria, the digestive process can more effectively destroy the harmful bacteria. Moreover, these bacteria help our body to absorb the nutrients from the food that we consume.
Boost The Immune System
Our gut can help to protect ourselves from different illnesses. So, this means that adding the healthy bacteria to our diet can significantly strengthen our immune system. We can find healthy bacteria in lacto-fermented foods. It can control immune cells and prevent some autoimmune reactions, including inflammation.
Improve Brain Functions
Our brain is connected with our digestive and immune system. Just think about the last time you had cold or flu. Just remember how fuzzy your head felt and you will understand this connection. The vagus nerve is in fact responsible for all this. This nerve is one of 12 cranial nerves responsible for the transfer of information from our intestinal nervous system to the central nervous system in the brain. So, limiting unhealthy bacteria and maintaining the healthy bacteria can actually keep the proper functioning between these two systems.
Contain Powerful Antioxidants
Lacto-fermented foods are excellent source of potent antioxidants which has the ability to destroy free radicals that can contribute to cancer. These antioxidants can boost the immune system and prevent inflammation. In other words, this will help you treat eczema, arthritis, and other inflammation or autoimmune response-related conditions.
Lose Weight by Eating More Sauerkraut
Lacto-fermented foods are really beneficial for the regulation of some hormonal functions. In this way, you will be able to suppress your appetite and control your food cravings. According to many studies, people with a high intake of healthy probiotics have a reduced risk of obesity.
Homemade Fermented Onions
When preparing Lacto-Fermented onions, we highly recommend to use natural salt like Himalayan pink salt, kosher salt or Celtic sea salt. They have a rich content of minerals unlike the table salt used in commercially-prepared fermented foods.
You can add fermented onions can to your salads, sandwiches, in your tacos or nachos, eat on their own or as condiments with your meals.
1 kilogram (2.2 pounds) of small peeled onions or shallots,
A handful of garlic cloves, peeled
1 liter (about one quart) of pure water (distilled water is best)
50g of natural salt of choice
A few wide mouth glass jars with airtight lids
You can use the onions whole or slice them.
First you should dissolve 50g of salt in 1 liter of water in order to prepare the brine. Put the onions in the jars and make sure that the jars are more than half full. Pour the brine over them and let 1-2 inches head-space. Cover the jars with their airtight lids. Keep them at room temperature, until you obtain the desired texture and flavor. We recommend opening the lid every day for the first 2 weeks, in order to release the accumulated fermentation gas. After the first 2 weeks, open it every other day.
The process of fermentation can last up to 1-2 months.
If you notice that your jar smells putrid when opening it, make sure to throw it out and start the whole process again.
Lacto-fermentation is an easy, safe and healthy process. Moreover, it is very economical. This will keep your foods safe for months because the brine used in Lacto-fermented foods actually creates an acidic, anaerobic environment in which the “bad guys” are unable to grow in this environment!