Monday, January 26, 2009

Fermentation 101 - How To

Can't have a proper fermentation blog without telling people first how to ferment stuff. Just wouldn't be right.

So, please check this link out: - it's my first try at a Fermentation 101 course. It only takes a few minutes, and it shows how easy it is to make sauerkraut and pickled daikon.

Here's how it goes:

Sauerkraut (polish style):

1 large head of cabbage (may need more)
2 tsp caraway seed
1 tbsp sea salt
Non-chlorinated water
1 Quart mason/ball jar
Large metal bowl
Potato masher
Peel off any older, discolored cabbage leaves. Cut cabbage into quarters, and thinly slice into ¼ in thin, long strips. Place all cabbage into large metal bowl, add salt and caraway seeds, and mash with potato masher until cabbage starts to expel water and becomes flat and soft (about 5 minutes of mashing). Once this is done, put cabbage into quart jar. Push down hard onto cabbage, until cabbage juice covers sauerkraut. If there is not enough liquid from the cabbage itself, add non-chlorinated water until cabbage is fully covered. Close lid tightly and allow to sit at room temperature for at least 1 week, and up to 6 weeks for full flavor.

Note: Give at least one inch of space at top of jar to allow for expansion from gassing from fermentation.

PICKLED DAIKON (my version - not a classic Japanese version by any means)

2 lb. fresh Daikon root
2 tbsp sea salt
1 tsp freshly ground coriander
1 tsp freshly ground allspice
½ tsp freshly ground pepper
Fresh, non-chlorinated water
Mandolin Knife
Wood or metal bowl
Potato Masher
Quart Mason/Ball Jar

Using sharp knife, or, preferably, mandolin cutter, slice daikon into ¼ - 1/8” thin slices. Julienne slices about ½” wide. Place pieces into a wooden or metal bowl, and add salt and spices.
Mix everything around in the bowl. Once everything is mixed, mash with a potato masher until juices start to flow from daikon, and daikon becomes slightly transparent. Put all daikon into a quart-sized mason jar, and push down with fingers or mallet until juice covers daikon mixture. If there is not enough juice, add water until everything is covered. Cover tightly, and place in a warm area in the kitchen for 14 days, at least. Product is ready when significant bubbling occurs, but a longer ferment decreases the sulfury taste you will get at the start. It also decreases the stink of the ferment. And believe me, young pickled daikon is pretty stinky. But like cheese, stinky is good, no?

For less salt usage: Replace 1 tbsp salt with 2 tbsp raw whey or 1 packet yo’gourmet.

I'll have photos added real soon! But you can see all this on the link -

1 comment:

  1. Scott,
    I am super excited that we are going to be able to purchase your products at our co-op! (North Indy Food Co-Op). We got to sample many of your products last night and they were delicious! I'm sure I'll be talking about you on my blog!