I still remember the first time I thumbed through Nourishing Traditions and excitement welled up inside of me. I was relatively new to the Paleo/Ancestral Health scene and was shoulder deep in real food recipes I wanted to try. But the idea of lacto-fermenting foods and drinks in my own home got me super pumped! Needless to say, I’ve been at it for about 6 years now and trust me, nothing beats a homemade ferment! My latest creation, Ginger Gold Kvass, is no exception.
For those of you not familiar with kvass, it is a Russian drink traditionally made by fermenting stale wheat or rye bread. It was often flavored with apples, berries, or beets. Beet kvass is a staple in Ukrainian homes and is probably best known for offering digestive benefits due to the probiotics from the lacto-fermentation process.
From Nourishing Traditions:
This drink is valuable for its medicinal qualities and as a digestive aid. Beets are loaded with nutrients. One 4-ounce glass, morning and night, is an excellent blood tonic, promotes regularity, aids digestion, alkalizes the blood, cleanses the liver and is a good treatment for kidney stones and other aliments.
My Ginger Gold Kvass does not have wheat or rye bread, just beets and ginger. Therefore making this drink Paleo, gluten-free, SCD-legal, and vegan. This kvass is salty, mineraly, zippy, and tangy all at once.
If you are intimidated by fermenting at home, there is no need to be if you have the right tips and tricks! When I first started this journey, I used Mason jars with screw tops for all of my ferments. Because it is not an airtight seal, you cannot achieve a perfect anaerobic environment and occasionally you may get mold on the top of your ferment. I’ve read that this is not a big deal and you can simply skim it off, but I’d rather not go there. I invested in two 1 1/2 liter Pickl-it jars and then bought a case of 1 1/2 liter hinge top jars. The beauty of this system is that the lids are interchangeable, so you can take the airlock lid off, put a regular lid on and then start a new ferment in another jar! If you would like to read more about this, check out my post on Beet Ginger Sauerkraut.
I chose to use gold beets for my Ginger Gold Kvass because I enjoy the taste and love the beautiful orange color! Feel free to use red beets if you prefer.
- 5-6 gold beets, scrubbed and cut into quarters
- 2 inch knob of ginger, scrubbed and sliced into 1/4 inch disks
- 2% water brine (This is made by adding 19 grams of sea salt to a quart of water and stirring to dissolve.)
- Place all of the above ingredients into your Pickl-it jar, adding enough of the 2% brine to reach the rounded shoulders of the jar.
- Lock the hinge lid down and place the air-lock on the jar, filling with water.
- Place the jar in a dark place (cabinet or pantry) for 3-4 weeks, checking on it occasionally. If you prefer a saltier drink, do not ferment to kvass quite as long.
- This recipe makes enough to fill one 1 1/2 liter jar. If you are using a smaller or larger jar, adjust the amount of beets to fill the jar halfway and add more or less ginger.
- Store the kvass in your refrigerator with a regular hinged lid.
If you enjoy recipes like this one, make sure to check out my Fermenting at Home board on Pinterest!