Saturday, September 22, 2012

First Pickle

While researching various tidbits of data concerning fermentation, I came across a lot of recipes and information regarding lacto-fermented pickled fruit and vegetable.

Now, technically, brewing and pickling aren't necessarily related, but then again who doesn't want a nice snack with their mead? I chose to pursue the art.

My first attempt, currently bubbling under an apron in the kitchen - is a half red onion, single cucumber, lemon cucumber, watermelon rind, and a bit of garlic. It's very simple, and I only wanted to get my feet wet - so to speak.

The method I used was a simple as I could make it.

Brine from a quarter tablespoon kosher salt (to about a quart of water), then set aside. Added, and packed lightly in kosher salt the vegetables in what layers I could make.  Added brine, then set a stone atop them to keep them under the brine. Loosely cover with a lid (let out the "bad" oxygen bearing air as the "good" air was produced by our lacto-bacillus friends - thereby preventing "the mould" on the top of the jar"), then set aside in a cool dark place.

This morning, I tried a piece of onion and found it very very strong in flavor. Looking forward to the other veggies as it may need to sit up for perhaps another day or two.

It's been six days, and the cucumber in my firs ttest pickle is only partly translucent, and doesn't seem to be taking to the ferment very well. I suspect I didn't add enough salt to the brine (I was attempting to adapt a recipe that called for 1 gallon of water, to one quart). I added more salt. No scientific way here, just dump a bit into the top. Hey, it's an experiment.

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