What to do with rotten fruit? Fermented smoothie!

Fermented smoothie: It is summer and fruit and berries are everywhere, currently the brambles (Rubus fruticosa) are offering many blackberries along paths, tracks and fields, and the local markets are coloured in the region’s sweetness.

blackberriesWe had friends visiting recently, so we had bought some lovely local peaches for sugar fixing possible carb withdrawal symptoms. It wasn’t necessary in the end, the probiotic ceviche, cashew yogurt, sauerkrauts, water kefir and chocolate truffles satisfied them. Fully. A few days ago, after they’d left, I found a bag with three relatively rotten peaches in the fridge. They did not look like you wanted to eat them any longer, but they were not all bad. The day before we had been at a natural wine festival and I came to think of something I was told there: a tasty wine comes from very ripe, slightly decomposing grapes that have been bitten and chewed by insects and birds. I had, in other words, the perfect material for a peach fermentation with taste.

I cut off the rotten bits and threw the rest in a kilner jar with a bit of water kefir as a starter (probably not necessary), some old ginger that had also been forgotten, a little sip of ginger bug for good measure, and a small handful of water kefir grains. Then I added a teaspoonful of rapadura (dehydrated sugar cane juice) to further kickstart the fermentation and covered it with water; closed the lid. It was left out for a night and a day, tasted, and then put in the fridge. The fermentation was going well, it was souring nicely and the liquid was peachy.

In the fridge fermentation goes slower and after another two days I took it out. It tasted nice. I added a few spoonfuls of honey, stirred it in, left it at room temperature to “activate the honey”. Then blended it all – with kefir grains (stainless steel blades for 5-10 seconds is no problem) – poured it back where it came from and left it on the counter for a few hours to get the fermentation going further. Finally, back in the fridge to cool.

A few hours later we drank it with great pleasure. Delish. Rotten fruit otherwise destined for the compost had been rendered a lovely, probiotic peach and ginger smoothie. A little was left over and I added a banana, put it back in the fridge. The following day we had fermented fruit soup and were reminded of Amazonian chicha.

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