Unsalted cultured vegetables (cv’s) are made with raw vegetables and starter. What you are after here is the massive amount of enzymes, vitamins, and probiotics that this food contains. I created this sweet ‘n sour combo for kids of all ages, especially those on The Body Ecology Diet (B.E.D) healing from autism and Candida. I wanted something fizzy with bright color …. in walked Purple Potion.
Most everyone loves this recipe. For those who don’t like beets, try garden blend 🙂 If you’re not convinced of the benefits of probiotic foods, check out benefits here. Beets are not typically allowed on a candida cleansing diet like B.E.D., because they contain natural sugars, yet culturing them as this recipe does makes them just fine for most bodies because the probiotics living in the culture starter eat the sugar and transform this once sweet food into a sour, probiotic-rich one; leaving behind all the great liver/blood cleansing properties that beets contain.
My youngest boy (in photo) started on cv’s when he was 2 and eats them with every meal; even the cabbage logs …. he stuffs the entire thing in his mouth! My oldest is more reserved, yet if it’s Purple Potion he’s likely to eat them.
“Purple Potion” Recipe
Yields: 6 Quart-sized jars give or take
1 packet vegetable starter culture*
1/4 cup warm filtered water
½ tsp EcoBloom** (or Rapadura, sucanat etc.)
7 1/2 – 8 lb green cabbage (reserve 12 oz. large outer leaves!!)
2 lb beets
1/2 lb green apples
1/2 lemon, juice and zest
3-4 cups filtered water, depending on how dry the veggies are
Large Stainless Steel or Glass Bowls
6 Quart-Sized Mason Jars
Wide Mouth Funnel
- Dissolve culture starter and EcoBloom in ¼ c. warm filtered water (90 degrees F).
- Allow to sit on counter for 20 minutes.
- Clean and chop veggies and apples into pieces that fit into your food processor.
- Shred with a medium bladed grater (not fine shred!)
- Remove 1/3rd of mixture and blend/food process (may need to do in 2 batches).
- Blend with enough of allotted 3-4 cups of filtered water until consistency of thick juice.
- Place into a big, clean bowl with culture starter mix, rest of grated veggies, and lemon.
- Mix with two big spoons, or clean hands.
- Pack tightly into jars with a potato masher or your fist to force out air pockets.
- Fill jars, allowing liquid to cover vegetables with about 1 1/2-inches of head space.
- Roll reserved cabbage leaves into tight logs, put on top of veggies (push down so liquid just covers “logs”) – add more brine if needed) – leave 1-inch at top for expansion.
- Screw lid on tightly.
- Culture 3-10 days, at 70-72 degrees F in dark spot (our Oven Incubator Kit keeps temperature constant).
- Enjoy up to ½ cup with meals.
- Store in fridge.
Tips & Tricks
- Scald equipment or wash in hot, soapy water. You can also spray everything with food-grade hydrogen peroxide and dry off with paper towels.
- CV’s continue to ferment at slow pace in fridge and keep well for weeks, even months, becoming softer and more delicious like a fine wine.
- Ready for variety? Try my beginner’s recipe for Garden Blend cultured vegetables.
- Go slow! CV’s are rich in enzymes and probiotics, so ease into this strong food. Once you get used to the extra gut activity, slowly up your dose. Donna Gates, creator of B.E.D, suggests therapeutic dose (1/2 cup) with meals.
- Enjoy as they are; toss into salad; roll in deli meat; or eat with dollop of mayo.
*Body Ecology’s culture starter makes potent cv’s. It contains Lb. Plantarum, a strong probiotic strain. Most probiotics get destroyed by antibiotics, fluoride, stomach acid, and chlorinated water before they reach your intestines. Which is where they live. Yet, these guys (Lb. Plantarum) get there safe and sound.
**Body Ecology’s Ecobloom is 100% natural powder chicory extract FrutaFit, Inulin (FOS – fructooligosaccharides). This prebiotic is a quick food for the probiotics. Like the ones in that culture starter packet you’re using. When you add Ecobloom you provide something for the little guys to munch on while they’re adjusting and growing in #’s in the jar.
I just opened a jar and heard a beautiful symphony of bubbles. ~K.L. Carmel, CA
I love how I feel when I eat them. ~P.T. Hartford, CT (age 13)
I will only eat cultured vegetables if they are Purple Potion, because I like them and they are purple ~T.R. Cabot, VT. (age 10)
Snacks for Kids on The Body Ecology Diet
Young Green Coconut Kefir
Nutritional Consultations with Tara, NC.
Gates, D. (2010). The Body Ecology Diet. Bogart, GA: B.E.D. Publications
May all bellies be happy!