snugglekitty: (cheese)
(I'm starnting to need a pickle icon, huh? I'll get there. For now, here's some cheese! Cheese is fermented!)

So. My kombucha batch is... not done. I can see the stuff growing, and it looks right, which is good. And it's starting to smell like kombucha, which is also very good. But it still tastes sweet. I think it just needs more time. Also, my store-bought kombucha does not come with terribly secure lids. I have discovered this to my woe, twice now. Hopefully the lesson will stick this time.

Last night I took out the batch of beets and onions with curry and juniper. It came out very well, although admittedly they needed to be rinsed and strained. I don't love the level of sourness so I'm probably not going to try to use that brine for another project. Apparently curry makes things ferment more slowly, which makes sense when you think about it, but didn't occur to me when I started the project. The pickles in question are very tasty.

I'm down to the bottom of the jar of pickles that [livejournal.com profile] mrpet made first - mixed veggies - so I started another one, with stuff we got from the farmshare and using about half of the remaining brine from that first delicious batch. Chard and kale! Should be interesting. I cooked them a bit first, as the Intarweb suggested. I also threw in other veggies that happened to be lying around - red pepper, scallions, broccoli. We'll see how it turns out. I'm not that into cooking greens in the summer, so it's nice to have another use for them. I bet they'll be great in salad.
snugglekitty: (Default)
I am progressing in my pickle-foo. I made my first batch of pickles last week - ginger carrots, YUM - with light supervision from [livejournal.com profile] mrpet. Yesterday I started my first batch of totally solo pickles - Vidalia onion and beet, with curry, juniper berries, red wine, and apple cider vinegar. The brine is very pink and pretty. I am planning to do ginger beets later in the summer, when beets are really cheap at the farmer's market (or else in the farmshare). But it takes a lot more than one bunch to fill up the pickle jar.

How we make pickles, kombucha )

I got The Joy of Pickling out of the library for more ideas. It is less free-form than Wild Fermentation - the author seems to focus on the "complex expertise style", and most of the pickles are vinegar rather than brine-based - no live cultures. So I am using it more as a set of ideas to experiment with.
In that spirit, I am very curious about watermelon rind pickles, broccoli pickles, daikon pickles with dried shrimp and apple, tomato pickles (perhaps I'd oven-roast them first! nom nom nom), apple pickles, pickled bell peppers, pickled pumpkin, pickled mustard greens, and, well, pickled cranberry ketchup just sounds cool.

Anyway, if you're local and want to be in line for some kombucha starter in a month or so, leave a comment.

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snugglekitty

August 2011

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