Back in August and September of last year I began doing research on healing oneself with diet. Although I ate gluten-free as a result of a diagnosed sensitivity to wheat, my body had begun to exhibit the same symptoms as back when I did eat wheat. After much research, I chose to try a Whole 30 (as well as eliminating nightshades) starting October 1st. As suspect as it sounds, it was life changing. Almost all of the symptoms that led me to the Whole 30 disappeared over the course of that month. Additionally, I was able to ditch both my daily allergy meds and the over-the-counter sleep aid that had helped me get mediocre sleep at best.
After the 30 days I began the reintroduction protocol and quickly learned that I was not going to be able to add many foods back into my diet. In fact, over the next few months I discovered that I needed to eliminate even more. That’s when I came across the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol and learned about things like leaky gut and that you can actually heal a leaky gut if you will take the time and make the dedication necessary.
This brings me to the clamp lid jars.
One of the things that is highly recommended for those who need to heal their gut is the consumption of fermented foods. As a child I lived in Germany for five years, so I grew up loving sauerkraut. But what you find in most stores is pasteurized and therefore lacking in all of the probiotics that are so healthy for you.
I came to the conclusion that I needed to try and make my own, so I pulled up Google and began looking for how to make sauerkraut. It didn’t sound that difficult to make, so I went out and got the ingredients and prepared my first batch. After a few days of fermenting it was pretty darn ugly. The cabbage had worked its way out from under the weight I had holding it under the brining solution and begun to mold.
The experience and failure were enough that I decided to just buy the expensive, semi-pasteurized version of sauerkraut that the local health food store carried. This went on for months until by chance I came across the idea of fermenting in clamp-lid jars. The method doesn’t even require a weight! The lid seals out anything bad that might spoil your sauerkraut, while the rubber gasket allows for the excess gas to seep out. It sounded like the perfect solution and when I came across one such jar for a good price, I knew I had to give making sauerkraut another try. This is the recipe I used.
For three weeks I’d poke my head in the pantry (where I had set the jar) and check to see if it was bubbling, leaking, or growing anything unsavory. Then this past Monday, I finally got to open it up and there wasn’t any sign of mold. Not only that, but it was some of the best sauerkraut I’ve ever tasted!
In fact, we liked it so much, that I went out and purchased two more identical jars. We’ve got a second batch of sauerkraut fermenting and also decided to try lacto-fermenting okra. So far it looks like it’s going well, but we’ll see once we get to taste it.
If you’ve ever wanted to try fermenting or have tried it and failed, I urge you to try a clamp lid jar. What seemed like an insurmountable obstacle after my first attempt, became an easy task thanks to a lid and a clamp.