Frequently Asked Questions
There’s a bit of confusion about what “lacto-fermented” or “lacto-fermentation” means. The thinking goes something like this:
Because some “Nourishing Tradition”, as well as traditional European recipes recommend using whey as a “starter” when making fermented foods, it has been assumed the term “lacto-fermentation” meant dairy is used. The thinking goes like this:
- Whey is from dairy….
- and dairy contains lactose, a milk sugar…
- that “lacto” is an abbreviated form of the word “lactose”…
- Therefore, the wrong conclusion is reached, that lacto-fermented is a term referring to foods that contain dairy products.
So what does “lacto” in “lacto-fermentation”, or “lacto-fermenting”, or “lacto-fermented” really mean?
The correct answer is much easier to follow! “Lacto”, used in “lacto-fermentation” and all of its derivations, refers to lactic-acid bacteria, familiar to most people as “lactobacillus”. “Lacto” is simply the shortened name of “lactobacillus”, the same way that we shorten “Samual” to “Sam”, or “Susan” to “Sue”.
Those who suffer lactose-intolerance, or are trying to maintain a casein-free diet can absolutely have a dairy-free diet when making lacto-fermented foods!
Did you know...
Sourdough bread requires the help of a yeast, Saccharomyces exiguus, along with lactobacilli, to provide its characteristic texture and flavor.
—Microbes Give Food Great Flavor!
I regret to inform you that I am completely out of Pickl-It pickled cucumbers.
A liter and a half would normally last two days, but I rationed them, making them last longer. And now they are gone...
Your book MUST feature the absolute miracle that Pickl-It pickles are. I
attribute them to exceptional positive changes not gotten from
any other fermentation system.
Must go. Checking myself in to a sanitorium for pickle-withdrawal.
—Patrick J, Indiana