8 days ago I went on a fermentation binge.
I prepared sauerkraut, started another batch of kombucha, and made a batch of beet kvass. I had slacked over the holidays as far as my ferments goes. It had been a long while for sauerkraut, and I have yet to have had a good non-overly-fermented batch of Kombucha yet. Beet Kvass is my safe drink.
It is one of the EASIEST fermented drinks to make! Kefir may come second, but kefir needs almost daily care. Beet kvass? It’s so easy, it was hard for me to believe it really could pack a punch for health.
Beet Kvass originates from Russia. (Correction: Ukraine. My apologies!) It’s a fermented drink made from beets (as the name indicates), using water, salt, and/or whey to ferment the drink into a healthy tonic! It’s full of probiotics, B vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. It alkalizes your blood; detoxes your liver, kidneys, and gallbladder; is anti-carcinogenic; and known for being an overall healthy wellness drink!
From what I’ve read, it doesn’t matter what kind of beet you use, although red beets are typically the ones seen being made into Beet Kvass. My grocery store happens to nearly always carry golden beets over red in the Organic section, so when I first attempted Beet Kvass, that was all I had. Later I attempted to make it with red beets, and didn’t like it. At all. I thought maybe I messed something up. So I assume there are different tastes in the final result depending on what kind of beet you use, so be aware that you may develop a taste for one over the other.
Originally I wanted to use red, but I have now fully fallen in love with golden beets, which looks, and tastes, lovely.
The recipe I follow for my Beet Kvass can be found on Coconut Mama. It’s the best recipe I’ve used, doesn’t use whey, and is simple to follow. I do not have a gallon glass jar, so I will write down my modified recipe here suited for a half-gallon mason jar.
You Will Need:
3-4 small beets (the larger they are, the less you’ll need)
1 tbsp. of sea salt
a cutting board
half-gallon mason jar + lid and ring
- Take the beets and chop the tops and the bottoms off. I’ll also cut off any spots that don’t look so good, or are gnarled.
- In your sink, wash off the beets until they “shine”. I use a rough pad of some sort to scrub the beets just enough to get dirt and grime off, without tearing the skin.
- On your cutting board, cut your beets in half, then cut them in half again (horizontally), and then in half a third time (vertically). You don’t want the chunks to be too small, so depending on the size of the beets, cut accordingly.
- Place beets in the mason jar, and sprinkle salt on top. (It is my personal preference to leave the beets covered in salt for a short while before I add the water. For whatever reason, the kvass always turns out better this way.)
- Add filtered water up to the top, leaving 1-2 inches of headspace.
- Cover with lid, closing tightly. If you didn’t leave much headspace, I wouldn’t close it too tightly because the kvass will produce carbonation. I shak the jar to combine the salt and water, but you could also use stir it using a wooden spoon.
Place in a warm spot in your home, and leave for 1-2 weeks. Do not stir or shake during this time period.
Mine only took about a week before I was pleased enough to drink it. I’ll leave it out for a while longer to ferment more before I transfer it to the fridge. The time period in the fridge allows the tonic to “age”, so its taste will change over that time. Because “harder”, in my opinion.
Once you’re finished with your first batch, you take the beets, rinse them, cut them in half once, throw them back in the mason jar, and repeat the steps above! This batch will be weaker, but it’s one way to be frugal and make the beets last longer. I never care for the second batch, it always tastes too weak for my liking. So this time around, I plan on grating the beets and using them in salads and other recipes to eat.
Sally Fallon, author of Nourishing Traditions, recommends drinking a 4-ounce glass morning and night to get the full benefits of the Beet Kvass, and as a digestive aid. You can always ease into that habit slowly, if you wish to form it, because Beet Kvass can be an acquired taste, and since it is a probiotic, it may be best to give your body some to adjust. I have never had adverse effects (such as “die off”) from drinking Beet Kvass.
This morning, when I decided to check on my Beet Kvass, I noticed it had a lovely, dark color to it! I just LOVE the orange color the golden beets create!
And when I opened it, immediately I discovered how carbonated it was.
And it FOAMED like crazy!
I don’t really have a taste for the foam, and in case there were any impurities, I decided to skim the foam off.
I just took a spoon, and scooped the foam out, and skimmed the top to get as much as I could. At this stop, it hadn’t yet stopped foaming, so to get all of it would have been in vain.
I originally didn’t plan on drinking it just yet, but I was so happy and pleased with the results I decided to go ahead and pour me a cup.
Like I said, I will keep it out to ferment some more, before I put it in the fridge to age. Most likely that’ll only be a few days.
I love Beet Kvass, and I definitely feel better after drinking it. I drink just a small glass at a time, typically in the afternoon. I hope to take it more regularly, to see if I can notice any long term benefits it gives me.
Please consider giving Beet Kvass a try. It’s a time tested and true health beverage. It’s very easy; probably one of the easiest fermented drinks you could ever make. If I can do it, you can do it.
Other links to also check out:
“For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.” Leviticus 17:11
While it is important to keep the physical condition of your blood healthy, please realize that alone will not save you. Jesus Christ shed His own blood to atone for our sins, while He himself was blameless.
“In whom we have redemption through his blood, [even] the forgiveness of sins…” Colossians 1:14
Give thanks unto the Lord for the body and health that He has given us, always counting our blessings, and giving God the glory for all that we do. The measures we take to keep ourselves healthy is all good and well, but remember that Christ holds the key to eternal life, and the health of our soul is more important than the health of our physical body.