Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Two Successes and a Dud

Fermented veggies plus sandwich equals YUM!

The first fermented veggie experiment is now finished!
The two jars of mixed veg, whey, salt and water were successfully fermented, and the juice smells piquant and appealing...hooray!  I went a little too heavy on the peppers in each of them, so I took them out and combined what was left all into one jar and put it in the fridge.  After a taste test, of course...they were tart, mellow, a little softer than the original raw texture, but not truly soft (a good "pickle" texture, sort of), only slightly salty, and delicious!

The third jar, the one made without whey, did not turn out.  It got white slime at the bottom and top of the jar, smelled bad (it was obvious, no guessing necessary) and the contents were thrown out.  My guess is that in the absence of the whey, I did not add an adequate amount of additional salt.

I really like the texture of the cauliflower and the small chunks of sweet onion.  I was not as pleased with the texture of the whole radishes, but the flavor is good, so next time I would dice them.  The red peppers (sweet) were nice, as was everything.  Next time if I want a little kick without overwhelming the whole jar, I'll stick in a half or so serrano pepper instead of more.  I was very glad to have included the really added a nice balance to the flavors.

We both enjoyed eating a bit on the side of various meals, but so far my favorite way to enjoy the fermented veggies is atop a basic turkey sandwich instead of the usual raw lettuce and such.  I think I'll make a more finely diced version of the mixture, sort of like chow-chow, for specifically a sandwich spread.  It really makes the sandwich taste amazing, and it's not an overwhelmingly tart or pungent (or weird) taste...just a burst of complementary flavors, so good.  It's, in short, a small back to the chopping board to see what odds and ends end up in the next experimental jars!

What are you doing in your kitchen these days?  How do you utilize your bits and pieces of fresh veggies and fruits? I'd love to hear!


Jo said...

Hi Robbyn, so glad I found your site. I have been thinking about trying some fermented vegies, and my daughter and I made our first batch of cheese recently, and I was at a loss of what to do with all that whey. What are your proportions of whey, salt etc? I loved that you wrote about exactly what worked and what didn't - that makes the first experiment so much easier for the rest of us!

Zaftig Diva said...

I made that sandwich today as well. It was fabulous. I saved the brine from the first ferment for the second. And now I have that brine in the frig waiting on the next batch. This is more fun than I imagined. I posted pics at my blog, and emailed them to friends and family. If more people knew how easy this is we could all be food artist.

I have way too much sauerkraut and it turned out less interesting, but still taste fresh and crisp.

Thanks again.

Robbyn said...

Hi Jo, I used about a fourth a cup of whey in a 2 quart jar...I'm still playing around with quantities, but check out my friend Deb's site for more specifics (she's the kultured karaite link a couple of posts back)...can't wait to see how yours turn out!
Diva, I hopped over to your blog and wow, what successes!!! Keep it up and be sure to keep me posted as to your favorite combinations!