Cultured Vegan Mole Sauce. (Not authentic, but keto hacked, paleo and tasty)

I was rummaging through my pantry a couple weeks back and found an unfinished but open bag of cacao nibs. Sadly they had over-fermented and had the distinct aftertaste of sourdough starter. I do not like to throw things out unless they are actually “off” so I left them on the counter to remind me to think on it. And so I did… and eventually came to the idea of a marriage between mole sauce and my favorites: tahini and kefir. So I chucked the remaining nibs (about a cup) into a cup of slightly watered down coconut kefir I had made and let it sit out for a couple days to further culture. I blended it with an array of chilis and chili powder and left it again.

Fermenting sauces that contain added and natural sugars is a way of keto “hacking”. The sugars are consumed by the natural bacteria after a few days. It is a condiment though so I would not recommend eating it with a spoon if you want to stay under your carb count.

Authentic mole contains bread, tortilla chips (both which I cannot currently eat) as well as chicken broth, which I decided to avoid for this recipe and go the way of the French: “let the vegetables speak for themselves.” I hope you enjoy it. It’s a surprisingly versatile sauce. It goes well with eggs, cheese, in wraps and will perform as well as standard mole in the classic chicken enchiladas or even cauliflower and tempeh enchiladas for a vegetarian or vegan option. Give it a shot and tell me what you think!

Mole & kefir guacamole on a keto flax wrap. Nom nom.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cacao nibs or 100g bar of 100% baking chocolate, chopped (1/2 cup cacao powder will work here as well but you may need to add liquid)
  • 1 cup coconut kefir
  • 1 jalapeno, roasted
  • 2 roma tomatoes, roasted
  • 1 head garlic, roasted
  • 1 ample cup fermented onions with brine + 1/4 cup additional brine
  • 1 Large slice of Cultured Sourdough Keto Bread, toasted
  • 1/2 cup stirred tahini
  • 2 tsp hot smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp hungarian paprika
  • 1/2 Tbsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • handful unsulphered raisins

Method:

You can do this one of two ways. Put all the ingredients in a jar and let them ferment for a few days and then blend, or blend together in a high powered blender and then put in a jar to ferment. I recommend the latter.

  1. Sanitize a couple of wide mouth pint jars or a 1 liter glass mason in the oven at 180 degrees for a few minutes.
  2. Place all ingredients in a high powered blender and puree until smooth.
  3. Transfer to your sanitized glass jar and leave for 1-5 days for it to ferment. You will see little bubbles when it is fermenting. It is ready to eat or you can leave it until the bubbles stop.
  4. Refrigerate after the ferment is finished.
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Cultured Tomato Sauce (Probiotic Ketchup)

This is a recipe I came up with when we were living in N. Ireland for a stint. I’ve called this tomato sauce because it reminds me most of the lovely Australian Tomato sauce I’ve had on trips to my husband’s homeland.  We have one here in Oregon called “Portland Ketchup”. This has the advantage of being probiotic as well as keto once it is fermented for a few days. It is not the sickly sweet ketchup I grew up on but rather a savory, vinegary sauce. I never fully got the rhyming slang for “tomato sauce” in Australia, I am sorry to admit. The first time I heard “Pass the dead horse” it took a good 10 minutes of explanation to break that one down for me. It does for the most part rhyme in an Aussie accent… but I’m happy to stick with tomato sauce.

Ingredients:

  • 500g Organic Tomato Puree/Paste
  • 1 Small or 1/2 Medium Organic Onion
  • 3 Garlic Cloves or 2 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1/2 cup brine from another ferment (onion or kimchi)
  • 1/4 cup Raw Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/8 cup pure maple syrup or raw honey
  • 1/8 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 1/2 Tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/2 Tsp Organic Allspice
  • 1/2 Tsp Organic Cloves
  • 1/2-1 Tsp Smoked Paprika
  • 1/2 Tsp Ancho Chili Flakes (optional)

Method:

Place all ingredients in a food processor, blender or Vitamix (chop first if you’re using a normal blender) and puree, then transfer to a 1.5 Liter fermenting jar with air lock or a swing/clip top 1.5 Liter Jar. I used a quart mason but in all honesty it was not large enough. Leave for 2-4 days on the counter to ferment.


Cultured Cilantro Lime Tahini Dressing (keto, paleo, vegan)

Happy Cinco De Mayo Folks! This is a wicked addictive dressing (or dip, if you make it thicker) and perfectly quick and tasty to whip up today for your celebrations. Give it a go… you won’t regret it.

Ingredients:

Method:

Combine all ingredients for the dressing in high powered blender and pulse until smooth or mix with an immersion blender. I like to use these Oxo Chef Squeeze Bottles for all my homemade condiments. But in all reality you might stand there with a spatula scraping every last drop out of the blender and it may never make it into the bottle. So enjoy. I did.


Cultured Barbecue Sauce… Minus the Nasties

Fermented barbecue sauce day two. Look at that lively action!

One of the first things I learned to ferment was barbecue sauce. I had always wanted to give it a go, but my newfound resistance to refined sugars and the discovery that I could inject nearly any food with probiotics naturally put me over the edge. I came up with it alongside my fermented ketchup recipe (I have always hated ketchup but loved Australian tomato sauce for its vinegar kick).

The first time was a charm, which almost never happens, and then I had the challenge of recreating it.

It is still in process, but this recipe is pretty darned good and relatively easy.

I love it with sweet potato fries as well as an ingredient in my pizza sauce regime.

Give it a go and let me know how you like it!

Tomatoes and onions in the pre roast phase

Fermented Barbecue Sauce

Ingredients:

Method:

Roast tomatoes, onions and garlic at 425° for 45 minutes or until blackened. Set aside to cool.

Sanitize your 1 liter or quart jar and lids if using. I place them in the oven at its lowest temperature for a few minutes. 170° Fahrenheit in an American oven. My British ovens were usually 75° Celsius.

Place all ingredients in high powered blender or food processor (wet in the bottom, dry on top) but reserve the olive oil.

Blend until smooth.

Pour the paste into the sanitized jar. I usually scrape all of it in the keeping 2″ at the top at least for expansion.

Cover with the olive oil and seal the jar with the clip top or the fermenting air lock and lid.

Leave to ferment for 2-7 days, depending on taste. The longer you leave it the less sugar you will have in the final ferment so taste it as needed but be mindful to use sterile spoons.

I like to keep it in these cool little oxo chef bottles but a glass jar is just fine.

Condiment to your saucy heart’s desire!