Makes 1 quart
12 medium red beets
seeds from 2 cardamom pods (optional)
2 tablespoons sea salt
1 cup filtered water
2 wide-mouth quart-size mason jars
2 pint-size mason jars
2 regular size lids
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. Wash beets and prick in several places using a fork.
3. Bake beets on a cookie sheet for three hours, or until soft.
4. After beets have cooled, peel and cut into a 1/4-inch julienne. (Important: do not grate or cut beets with a food processor. Because this will release so much of the juice, the fermentation process will occur too rapidly and will likely result in alcohol rather than lactic acid).
5. Pack the mixture into wide-mouth quart-size canning jars.
6. Press down until the juices come to the top and cover the beets. The top of the beets should be at least one inch below the top of the jar.
7. Once the beets are packed, fill the pint-size jars with water and seal them. Use these as weights to push gas bubbles out of the fermenting sour beets (Insert the smaller jars of water in the open jars of beets. Push down on the weights once a day and watch the trapped gas bubble to the surface).
8. Depending on the time of year and the climate, the sour beets will take between three days to several weeks to ferment.
9. When bubbles are no longer releasing, the fermentation process is complete.
10. After fermentation at room temperature, store in refrigerator.
For more homemade fermenting ideas and recipes, check out my list of non dairy probiotics.