The cheese and bread diet.

What more can you want? Ok, beer. Any way you work it, bagels and cream cheese, wine and cheese and crackers, or the basic toasted cheese, you have happiness in a dish. For the non-drinkers, add sauerkraut.

I learned to drink beer after a teacher explained that beer was one of the first foods in an agrarian culture. (No arguing. This is anecdotal.) When humans settled, they began to work the land. Grains grew and were stored. Moisture got in the storage area and combined with the wild yeast hence, fermentation.

Today, I still practice wild fermentation. I sprinkle salt on cabbage and onion. BOOM! Sauerkraut! Pineapple rinds with water and sugar — tepache. Other symbiotic colonies of yeast and bacteria create kefirs, teas, and hard beverages. Merely allowing fruit to rest (and rot) will produce delightful textures. Juice in a dark corner and time, wine.

Grains equal breads. Grains and yeast equal bread with lighter textures. Grains, yeast, water, and time equal fermentation. Let the tweaking begin. With an infinite choice of plants additions and adjustments in processing, we have the world’s most widely consumed alcoholic beverage. Today, beer is as diverse as the the population that drinks it.

As agrarians became farmers (or engaged with same) we have the introduction of milk products. Cheese was born. Also, a ferment, by the way. Cheese begins with the separation of the curd and whey. (Little Miss Muffet.) The addition of a bacterial starter begins the ferment.

Fermentation shifts raw ingredients into the delicacies we enjoy. We can choose to honor the health benefits of the bread and cheese diet by selecting those products closest to the process. Soaked, sprouted grain breads, raw cheeses, beers crafted with full body, and vegetable ferments, combine to feed our bodies and keep the gut healthy.