Stock up: 3 products that celebrate food preservation traditions

Beet kvass from Cultured Traditions. Courtesy of Cultured Traditions
Beet kvass from Cultured Traditions. Courtesy of Cultured Traditions

Credit: Handout

Credit: Handout

Pickles, sauerkraut, hot sauce and even sour cream are examples of fermented or cultured foods, developed as a way to preserve produce and dairy for storage. We’re fortunate in this area to enjoy makers who offer a range of preserved foods.

Beet kvass from Cultured Traditions

You don’t need to love beets to love beet kvass, from Tanya Batskikh of Cultured Traditions. In her Suwanee commercial kitchen, Batskikh prepares a wide range of fermented foods, mostly based on recipes from her native Russia. She and her team make pickles and occasional seasonal ferments; hot sauce; cultured nondairy products, such as coconut kefir cheese; six varieties of sauerkraut; and so much more. If you’re a kombucha fan, you need to try their jun. But, the kvass is our favorite. It’s a drink that’s a bit tangy, a bit salty, just a tiny bit sour, and grounded with the earthy taste of fresh beets. There are three flavors — original, garlic, and ginger and turmeric. We can’t wait to try them all.

$6 per 12-ounce bottle of beet kvass. Available at Nuts ’N Berries, Floral Park Market, or local pickup at the Cultured Traditions shop, 1300 Peachtree Industrial Blvd., Suwanee. 678-205-6348, culturedtraditions.com.

Elderberry-concord grape syrup from Butterfly Cove Botanicals. Courtesy of Renea Winchester
Elderberry-concord grape syrup from Butterfly Cove Botanicals. Courtesy of Renea Winchester

Credit: Renea Winchester

Credit: Renea Winchester

Elderberry-concord grape syrup from Butterfly Cove Botanicals

Two years ago, Renea Winchester moved from metro Atlanta to Butterfly Cove in western North Carolina, and started Butterfly Cove Botanicals as a way to share products made from the fruit and herbs that grow on her land, using time-tested recipes from her mountain neighbors. For example, her Green Magic Clay contains dried plantain and Solomon’s seal, which long have been part of a mountain remedy for back or arthritis pain. We sampled her elderberry-concord grape syrup. Elderberries have been known for centuries for their anti-inflammatory properties, and often are cited as an immunity booster against viruses. The syrup is sweetened with honey harvested in her area, and it is so delicious, you’ll want to enjoy it by the tablespoon. However, Winchester warns this is potent stuff, and she recommends a half teaspoon once a day as a maintenance dose, and a full teaspoon if you’re feeling rundown or have a scratchy throat. As she said, “please don’t think more is better.”

$20 per 4-ounce bottle. Available at butterflycovebotanicals.com.

Fermented garlic and honey from Cultured South Fermentation Co. Courtesy of Cultured South
Fermented garlic and honey from Cultured South Fermentation Co. Courtesy of Cultured South

Credit: Handout

Credit: Handout

Fermented garlic and honey from Cultured South Fermentation Co.

Melanie Wade Styles of Cultured South is a master of all things fermented. She started Golda’s Kombucha almost a decade ago, turning her grandmother’s recipe into a brand now available in more than 100 Kroger and Whole Foods stores. There are still plenty of kombucha flavors to choose from, including some with CBD, but she’s expanded way beyond kombucha, to all manner of fermented foods, including elixirs, tonics, kefir, cashew cheese, collard kimchi and fire cider. Our new crush is her fermented garlic and honey, made with raw honey from Savannah Bee Co. and fermented at least 30 days before being packaged. Styles said her favorite way to use it is drizzling the honey over salmon fillets, then adding a few garlic cloves and baking the whole thing. Some of her customers sip the honey by the spoonful, or chew on a garlic clove as a way to enjoy the anti-bacterial and immunity-boosting properties. The honey tames the raw garlic, the garlic flavors the honey, and we’re dreaming up other ways to enjoy the combination.

$12 per 12-ounce jar. Available at culturedsouth.com or at the Taproom, 1038 White St. SW, Atlanta. 404-549-8314.

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