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ISO pickling guidance - after the pickling

ISO pickling guidance - after the pickling
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  • Post #121 - July 31st, 2022, 3:59 pm
    Post #121 - July 31st, 2022, 3:59 pm Post #121 - July 31st, 2022, 3:59 pm
    Katie wrote:I can't see this thread title pop up without thinking of Engelbert Humperdinck.

    Seriously though, I've got plenty of gift cucumbers on hand and am reviewing this thread for ideas, starting at the beginning with smashed cucumber salad.

    LOL! Let's face it, that's pretty much what he meant. :lol:

    And yes, smashed cucumber salad sounds wonderful.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #122 - August 9th, 2022, 4:33 pm
    Post #122 - August 9th, 2022, 4:33 pm Post #122 - August 9th, 2022, 4:33 pm
    As I suspected, these fermented garlic dills did not take long. 10 days and they were ready. Pulled them out of the crock today . . .

    Image
    Fermented Garlic Dill Pickles
    I swear there are more here than I started with. Is it possible they fermented and multiplied? :lol:

    Image
    Jarred Up
    At least one of these jars is going to a friend's house. I'll probably keep a few but I have a lot more pickling cucumbers coming in later this week. :shock:

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #123 - August 13th, 2022, 2:00 pm
    Post #123 - August 13th, 2022, 2:00 pm Post #123 - August 13th, 2022, 2:00 pm
    Three more pounds of beautiful pickling cukes and some pristine dill arrived today (from Nichols Farm). Deployed some more of our small but mighty homegrown garlic and got another batch of garlic dills going . . .

    Image
    Mise En Place & Kuwabara White #2 Tall Petty, 115mm
    Spices (black mustard seeds, yellow mustard seeds, fennel seeds, gochugaru, black peppercorns), horseradish leaves, homegrown garlic, pickling cucumbers (washed and trimmed of their blossom ends), slitted jalapenos, flowering dill and pickling salt (later combined with distilled water to create a 3% brine).

    Simmered the spices briefly in a portion of the water, let it steep and cool off. After that, casually layered the cukes, garlic, dill and horseradish leaves (which supposedly help maintain pickle crispness) into the pickling crock, placed the weights to hold everything down and poured in the spice water, along with enough brine to cover just past the weights. No need to check these for at least a week but I'll be keeping a close eye on the collar of the crock and adding water as necessary to make sure a seal is maintained.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #124 - August 25th, 2022, 1:38 pm
    Post #124 - August 25th, 2022, 1:38 pm Post #124 - August 25th, 2022, 1:38 pm
    Jarred up the fermented garlic dills that I started back on August 13 . . .

    Image
    Fermented Garlic Dill Pickles

    ~13-day ferment turned out just fine. When I reached into the crock, everything was cool to the touch, which was kind of neat. I don't think I've ever encountered that before (or noticed it) but I took it as a good sign. Considering I included horseradish leaves this time for the express purpose keeping them crispier, it's ironic that this batch seems a wee bit softer than the last batch. They still have a nice crunch, though.

    I already have good homes in mind for these jars. By early next week, I hope to be onto the next fermentation project.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #125 - September 1st, 2022, 4:17 pm
    Post #125 - September 1st, 2022, 4:17 pm Post #125 - September 1st, 2022, 4:17 pm
    Embarked on a new pickling project this week, which I started yesterday . . .

    Image
    Cherry Bomb Peppers
    This is about 10 pounds, which I bought as an add-on from my CSA farmer. I'm making a large batch of lacto-fermented sambal. Hoping that after giving some as gifts, it'll last all year, as cherry bombs are quite seasonal. First step was to wash and stem the peppers, then cut them into small pieces . . .

    Image
    Chopped Cherry Bombs & Gihei Blue #2 Gyuto, 210mm
    A bit of a painstaking process. I considered wearing gloves but doing so really slows me down. So, I went bare-handed, which presented its own set of challenges. These are really hot. Even raw, the fumes from these bad boys were choking me out a little bit. The next step was to salt them (2% by weight) and pour off the moisture that drained out as they sat overnight. Earlier today, after draining the cherry bombs one last time, I added a few more ingredients, before putting it all in the fermentation vessel . . .

    Image
    Mise En Place
    Garlic paste, Botanist gin, further-processed salted cherry bombs, microplaned ginger, salt (1% of drained weight) and granulated sugar. Before mixing all this together, I ran the cherry bombs -- in 4 shifts -- through the food processor very briefly to homogenize the mixture in preparation for the fermentation stage.

    Image
    Fermentation Vessel
    Here it'll all sit for, well, I honestly don't know exactly how long. Probably 14-17 days. Last year it took 15 days but it was a much smaller batch. After trimming, salting, draining and adding the additional ingredients, this netted out at just over 6.5 pounds. In any case, I'll be checking it regularly and keeping the collar filled with water. If it goes like last time, it'll start bubbling out gas after a couple of days (as fermentation begins).

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #126 - September 1st, 2022, 6:30 pm
    Post #126 - September 1st, 2022, 6:30 pm Post #126 - September 1st, 2022, 6:30 pm
    Off topic but not really. Has anyone had luck pickling fish of any sort? Mainly like a nice pickled herring. It’s one of my fall/winter goto’s but always purchased.

    Cheers.
  • Post #127 - September 2nd, 2022, 5:25 pm
    Post #127 - September 2nd, 2022, 5:25 pm Post #127 - September 2nd, 2022, 5:25 pm
    RockyDennis wrote:Off topic but not really. Has anyone had luck pickling fish of any sort? Mainly like a nice pickled herring. It’s one of my fall/winter goto’s but always purchased.

    Cheers.

    You ask and you shall receive.
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #128 - September 14th, 2022, 5:05 pm
    Post #128 - September 14th, 2022, 5:05 pm Post #128 - September 14th, 2022, 5:05 pm
    I started a couple of pickling-type projects today. The first, with over 5 pounds of Persian cucumbers, is for a gathering this weekend . . . :wink:

    Image
    Sliced Cucumbers & Shigeki Tanaka SG2 Damascus Habakiri Gyuto, 210mm
    Added 1% salt after they were sliced and trimmed. Will let them steep and drain for the next day or so and then construct a spicy-sweet cucumber salad with them. The salad is best on Day 3, which is the date of the event.

    Next up, one more crack at fermented garlic dill pickles. I think I've finally dialed in a recipe that I'm happy with . . . and I've been getting some very favorable feedback on it, too . . .

    Image
    Garlic Dill Pickle Mise En Place & Shigeki Tanaka SG2 Damascus Habakiri Gyuto, 210mm
    Spices (black mustard seed, yellow mustard seed, gochugaru, black peppercorns and fennel seed), smashed homegrown garlic cloves, slitted red jalapenos, pickling salt (for a 3% brine) pickling cucumbers (trimmed of their blossom ends) and dill fronds.

    Ironically, I'm not a big fan of fennel in any form and I often avoid it. But after doing some digging around on the internet and in a couple of books, it occurred to me that fennel seed *might* be a missing note in my pickles. So, a few batches back, I added a scant half teaspoon to a 3-pound batch. Low and behold, it seems to add something more than a fennel note to the finished product. You can't really taste the fennel directly but it's something that feels noticeably absent when it's not there.

    I made a 'tea' with the spices and let it cool. After that, I layered all the rest of the ingredients under the weights in my pickling crock, then poured the cooled 'tea' and the 3% brine over it to cover it. Covered the crock, filled the moat and there it will sit for the next 7-12 days, depending on a number of variables.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #129 - September 22nd, 2022, 3:29 pm
    Post #129 - September 22nd, 2022, 3:29 pm Post #129 - September 22nd, 2022, 3:29 pm
    Finally got around to jarring up the last batch of cherry bomb sambal. With a pH of just around 3.0 (and us not having a ton of surplus fridge space), I decided it was safe -- and a good idea -- to waterbath-can it this time . . .

    Image
    Cherry Bomb Sambal
    I actually ended up with 12 half-pint jars but gave 1 away and tested another before I grabbed this shot. So, 10 pounds of cherry bombs ended up creating almost exactly 12 half-pint jars of sambal (there was a scant ramekin of extra). Useful information? Perhaps.

    In any event, it went well. Product looks/tastes/smells great and the seals seem tight. Rings have been returned -- loosely -- to the jars as a courtesy to their eventual recipients. They're not tight enough to obscure a bad seal but since most people don't eat an entire jar of sambal in one sitting, I wanted to provide them for convenient storage.

    Did I mention it went well? It went so well, in fact, that I decided to give it one more shot . . .

    Image
    10 Pounds Cherry Bomb Peppers
    Still very nice but not quite as pristine as the last batch. Given that we're now past the middle of September, that's not entirely surprising. I had to do a bit more culling and trimming this time around.

    Image
    Chopped Cherry Bombs & Sukenari HAP40 Gyuto, 210mm
    This is before the first salting stage (2% by weight). You can see that a few greenies snuck in there, too. So far, it's netting out at about 8.2 pounds. I expect it'll be down to about 6 pounds after the salting and draining phase.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #130 - September 23rd, 2022, 2:15 pm
    Post #130 - September 23rd, 2022, 2:15 pm Post #130 - September 23rd, 2022, 2:15 pm
    Pushing the current batch of sambal along . . .

    Image
    Mise En Place & Sukenari HAP40 Gyuto, 210mm
    Chopped/salted/drained cherry bombs (3100g), minced garlic (5%), Botanist gin (1.5%), minced ginger (1%), pickling salt (1%) and granulated sugar (2%).

    Mixed the chopped, salted and drained peppers with the other ingredients. Once it was all combined thoroughly, I loaded the mixture into a 5-quart fermentation vessel . . .

    Image
    Fermenting - Day 1
    At this stage, I still needed to fill the collar with water (now done). For sake of experimentation, I left this batch much chunkier than the last one. That means that it'll require more attention (stirring, mashing, etc.) over the next 14-17 days, while it does its thing. When it's all done, before packaging, I'll hit it with the stick blender and get it to the desired consistency.


    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #131 - September 23rd, 2022, 2:46 pm
    Post #131 - September 23rd, 2022, 2:46 pm Post #131 - September 23rd, 2022, 2:46 pm
    Looks amazing! I would put that stuff on EVERYTHING I eat....
  • Post #132 - September 23rd, 2022, 3:49 pm
    Post #132 - September 23rd, 2022, 3:49 pm Post #132 - September 23rd, 2022, 3:49 pm
    HonestMan wrote:Looks amazing! I would put that stuff on EVERYTHING I eat....

    Haha, thanks. Yeah, it's a bit addictive. I really had to nurse last year's batch because I didn't make enough. This year, I may have overcompensated. :lol:

    But I'm still learning, so the additional reps are helpful.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #133 - September 27th, 2022, 10:32 am
    Post #133 - September 27th, 2022, 10:32 am Post #133 - September 27th, 2022, 10:32 am
    Finished up what will probably be the last fermented dill pickles of the season. 14-day ferment and I'm very happy with the results . . .

    Image
    Garlic Red Jalapeno Dill Pickles
    The sort-out.

    Image
    Jarred Up
    3 pounds netted these 2 quarts plus a few extras that I relegated to a pint deli container.

    As for what prompted me to start this thread in the first place (wondering what to do after the ferment), since these are fridge pickles, I like to strain out and reclaim the spices and garlic, then cover the finished pickles with a pour of fresh 3% brine (the same salinity with which I started). In my limited experimentation, this seems to help the pickles maintain their maximum flavor and crunchiness. If I were hot water canning these, I'd probably take a different approach.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #134 - September 27th, 2022, 11:20 am
    Post #134 - September 27th, 2022, 11:20 am Post #134 - September 27th, 2022, 11:20 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:Finished up what will probably be the last fermented dill pickles of the season. 14-day ferment and I'm very happy with the results . . .

    Image
    Garlic Red Jalapeno Dill Pickles
    The sort-out.

    Image
    Jarred Up
    3 pounds netted these 2 quarts plus a few extras that I relegated to a pint deli container.

    As for what prompted me to start this thread in the first place (wondering what to do after the ferment), since these are fridge pickles, I like to strain out and reclaim the spices and garlic, then cover the finished pickles with a pour of fresh 3% brine (the same salinity with which I started). In my limited experimentation, this seems to help the pickles maintain their maximum flavor and crunchiness. If I were hot water canning these, I'd probably take a different approach.

    =R=


    A thing of beauty! And I’m sure someone in thread has asked but where did you get your fermenting jar-it’s gorgeous and I want one!!!!
    "Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad." Miles Kington
  • Post #135 - September 27th, 2022, 11:37 am
    Post #135 - September 27th, 2022, 11:37 am Post #135 - September 27th, 2022, 11:37 am
    boudreaulicious wrote:A thing of beauty! And I’m sure someone in thread has asked but where did you get your fermenting jar-it’s gorgeous and I want one!!!!

    Thanks! After seeing it (or something similar) on Chinese Cooking Demystified's youtube channel, I found one at Amazon. Iirc, it was around $50.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #136 - September 27th, 2022, 1:59 pm
    Post #136 - September 27th, 2022, 1:59 pm Post #136 - September 27th, 2022, 1:59 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote: These are really hot. Even raw, the fumes from these bad boys were choking me out a little bit.
    =R=

    Looks great.

    Have you considered cutting them on your stove top and putting your exhaust fan on high ? That will cut down on the fumes.
  • Post #137 - September 27th, 2022, 3:07 pm
    Post #137 - September 27th, 2022, 3:07 pm Post #137 - September 27th, 2022, 3:07 pm
    lougord99 wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote: These are really hot. Even raw, the fumes from these bad boys were choking me out a little bit.
    =R=

    Looks great.

    Have you considered cutting them on your stove top and putting your exhaust fan on high ? That will cut down on the fumes.

    Great idea. My exhaust fan -- installed by the people from whom we bought our house -- is pretty much ornamental, so I'm not sure it'd have much impact. I may give it a try next time. Thanks!

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #138 - October 5th, 2022, 12:05 pm
    Post #138 - October 5th, 2022, 12:05 pm Post #138 - October 5th, 2022, 12:05 pm
    Probably a fool's errand but I had about 350g of idle CSA habaneros and a freshly sharpened knife, so I decided to try to make something happen with them . . .

    Image
    Habanero Peppers, Pickling Salt & Yu Kurosaki VG10 Fujin Gyuto, 210mm

    Used 2% salt and will let these express their liquid for about 24 hours before I mash them up, add a few other ingredients (garlic, vinegar, touch of sugar, etc.) and move them to some sort of fermentation. After that, I'm not really sure. It'll be way too hot to eat without cutting it with something sweet/fruity. Orange and/or mango are obvious choices but maybe I'll come up with something else.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #139 - October 6th, 2022, 4:03 pm
    Post #139 - October 6th, 2022, 4:03 pm Post #139 - October 6th, 2022, 4:03 pm
    Finished up what I expect will be the penultimate pickling project of the season (I still have an upcoming date with some cabbages) . . .

    Image
    Cherry Bomb Sambal, Batch 2
    Liked this batch even more than the last one. Ended up with 12 half-pints, 1 pint and 1 little dude. I'm not going to bother hot water canning these because I have some room in the fridge for them.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #140 - October 7th, 2022, 7:38 am
    Post #140 - October 7th, 2022, 7:38 am Post #140 - October 7th, 2022, 7:38 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:Probably a fool's errand but I had about 350g of idle CSA habaneros and a freshly sharpened knife, so I decided to try to make something happen with them . . .

    After that, I'm not really sure. It'll be way too hot to eat without cutting it with something sweet/fruity. Orange and/or mango are obvious choices but maybe I'll come up with something else.

    =R=

    Go the Marie Sharp's route and add carrot. One of my favorite hot sauces.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #141 - October 13th, 2022, 2:56 pm
    Post #141 - October 13th, 2022, 2:56 pm Post #141 - October 13th, 2022, 2:56 pm
    Pretty sure this will be the final pickling project of 2022. I'm taking a stab at a really big batch of sauerkraut, which started with 20 pounds of cabbage . . .

    Image
    Cabbage Quarters & Kohetsu Blue #2 Tall Gyuto, 240mm (aka The Addict)

    After trimming, parting, coring, etc., I ended up with roughly 15 pounds. Next step was the slicing, which I did with the food processor. I considered using my mandoline but I decided the food processor would do a tidier job. Due to the sheer volume involved here, at no point did I consider doing it by hand. The Addict would have handled it. My arm, not so much. :lol:

    Once sliced, I dropped it all in a 5-gallon pail, added 2% pickling salt, mixed it all up and gave it a good pounding with a large wooden dowel . . .

    Image
    Sliced, Salted & Pounded Cabbage

    I'll repeat the pounding/mixing several more times over the next ~24 hours, until the cabbage gives up enough liquid to cover itself (in its own brine). At that point, I'll move it all to pickling crock, where it will continue to ferment for several more days (probably about 14). I still haven't decided if I'm going to add any other ingredients for the fermentation. I'll have to make that decision before I get to the crocking stage.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #142 - October 14th, 2022, 6:06 pm
    Post #142 - October 14th, 2022, 6:06 pm Post #142 - October 14th, 2022, 6:06 pm
    Right on schedule, the salt+cabbage+elbow grease combo worked its magic. Here's what was left in the 5-gallon pail this morning, after about 20 hours of intermingling, mixing and pounding . . .

    Image
    Salted Pre-Kraut
    It's hard to tell from here but this was full to just above the 1-gallon mark. Almost like it was barely there. Hard to believe this was 20 pounds of raw cabbage -- 5 big heads -- just a few hours ago.

    On the other hand, next it went into the 'official' 5-liter pickling crock, where it nearly filled the entire vessel. From here, it will ferment for a couple of weeks . . .

    Image
    Pickling Crock
    The moat is full of water and I placed the lid into position right after I snapped this pic.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #143 - October 17th, 2022, 6:26 pm
    Post #143 - October 17th, 2022, 6:26 pm Post #143 - October 17th, 2022, 6:26 pm
    Another great (and timely) video from Adam Ragusea . . .


    What even is lacto-fermentation?

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #144 - October 28th, 2022, 2:58 pm
    Post #144 - October 28th, 2022, 2:58 pm Post #144 - October 28th, 2022, 2:58 pm
    After a 15-day ferment, I successfully wrapped up the sauerkraut that I started back on 10/13 . . .

    Image
    Sauerkraut
    In the end, 20 pounds of cabbage netted 12 pints and 3 quarts of pretty tasty sauerkraut. It's got a nice fermented tang to it and a very pleasant texture (gentle crunch). I hot water-canned the pints and will refrigerate the quarts (two of which I plan to give away this week). Most of the pints, I'll also be giving away but I'll keep a few on hand. In any case, I think there might be a reuben on my horizon. :D

    =R=
    Same planet, different world

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