We love this super-healthy recipe for traditional beet kvass from Hannah at Nothing But Delicious. We’re peering over Hannah’s shoulder as she takes us through the in’s and out’s of this old-school health beverage. What do you think: would you or wouldn’t you?
Before I ever tasted beet kvass, I read that “to drink it is to taste the blood of the Earth”. Dramatic! But then I made beet kvass myself and…wow.
I’m no stranger to fermented food and drink – from kefir to kombucha to kimchi, I love it all! But I’ve never tasted anything quite like this thick, crimson liquid; it is salty, ever-so-slightly sweet, ever-so-slightly sour and somewhere, underneath all of that, it tastes the way that soil smells in the springtime. And, oh boy, is it pungent.
…sanitize your beets and your jar, which should be a friendly, bad-bacteria-free environment in which the good bacteria in whey can thrive.
…seal your jar tightly. True lacto-fermentation happens in an anaerobic environment. One of the only ways that making kvass can go wrong is mold and mold can only grow where there is oxygen.
…drink kvass cold.
…worry if you come up short on whey. You actually don’t have to use whey at all, but it will expedite the fermentation process and add nutrition to your kvass.
How To Make Beet Kvass
- Equipment32 ounce glass jar with lid*fine mesh strainercoffee filter or cheese clothyogurt or kefir
10-12 ounces (one very large) beet
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
2 Tablespoons whey
Place coffee filter or cheese cloth in fine mesh strainer over a bowl and separate whey from yogurt or kefir- sometimes this takes a while, so give yourself time. Whey should be completely clear.
Pour boiling water over whole beets and into the jar to sanitize. Remove any roots and chop beets into 1/2" cubes. Put them in the clean jar with whey and salt, then cover with filtered water.
Leave the jar on the counter for 48 hours. You can tell the kvass is ready when it's really, really fizzy. At this point, you can let it sit for another day or two to develop a more sour flavor, or pop it in the fridge, where it keeps for about a week.
Remember my tips above for adding fresh herbs and making your kvass even fizzier!