Mixed Fermented Vegetables - The Fermented Foody

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Mixed Fermented Vegetables

I promised yesterday to post the recipe for that bubblicious jar of vegetables featured in yesterday’s video.  When I’ve used cultured powder starters to date, the veg tend to take around 3-7 days to ferment.  This took only 24 hours.  Wow!

I left it another day and the veg was almost too soft for me.  I quite like a light crunch, but you may prefer otherwise.  Like art, movies, holiday locations, it’s all about you and what you enjoy best.  This is your very own little food party.  Do whatever makes you happy. 🙂

An extra note on this one: Any longer than 48 hours and I feel this ferment would have ruined.  The second day wasn’t even needed to be honest.

 

2% salt to the volume of vegetables used in a ferment is considered a reasonable balance.  This is what was used in this recipe, but it’s up to you.

Pectinase, the general term for enzymes that break down pectin, a substance that holds fruit and veg together, is halted in it’s process by salt.  So if you’re looking to ferment more slowly, add more salt.

Also, room temperature makes a difference. The warmer the room, the faster the ferment.  Say, for instance, you’re going away Friday and returning Sunday, you could pack your veg in a jar and leave it somewhere cooler, so you can keep your eye on it as it reaches it’s peak and you’re home again.  Don’t expect to ever have full control over a ferment. They have minds of their own and we are just their assistants! But as you try more, you will get to know your favourite, regular recipes and know how long you can usually leave them unattended.

This recipe consisted of the ingredients below in no particular order or measure.

Gather Your Goodies

Celery

Kohlrabi

Turnip

Celery

White Smooth Cabbage

White Crinkly Cabbage

Red Cabbage

Broad Beans

Bok Choi

Cucumber

Avocado Stalks

Fennel

Garlic

Salt

It’s Action Time!

It’s not a case of ‘get your gloves on love,’ but preparing raw food isn’t always pretty.  You need to be prepared to ‘get involved’ with your ingredients and get your hands messy.

So, you’re going to:

Place your bowl on the scales and set the scales to zero then add your veg as you chop it – this will enable you to calculate what 2% of your final weight is for the salt you’re going to add.  You may want to do this the first time, so you can change how much of each veg you use as you chop and see how the mixture is looking.

(Or – if you know you know you’re going to use all the veg you get out of the fridge, just weigh it all before you chop it and calculate the salt at the same time.)

Chop all your veg into thinnish strips and place into your mixing bowl.

Calculate 2% salt of the final weight of your ingredients and sprinkle that in across the top of the vegetables (use a Himalayan or Sea Salt rather than a table salt) if you haven’t done so already.

Mix all the veg together with your hands thoroughly, so all the ingredients are coated with the salt and you don’t have layers of veg .. it’s one big mix.

Now you’re going to get your wide mouthed jar (make sure it’s clean!) and spoon in some of that lovely mixture.

Grab a flat ended rolling pin (or any other kitchen implement you have to hand that will do the job) and press hard on the vegetables to break down the skins and allow the salt to impregnate the veg itself.  This will help to release the juices of the vegetables while you pack them into the jar. The juices will continue to release during the fermentation process.

For each spoonful of veg you add to the jar, repeat the process above.

Leave 1 inch of free space at the top of the jar.  I usually fill to the foot of the neck of the jar.

Now .. with this recipe, by the time we had filled our jars, enough water had been released to cover the veg to the top of the jar.  HOW clever? And how SIMPLE?!

Pop the lid on (plastic or glass lid best – metal isn’t a good thing to use as it leaches into the food) and leave for 24 hours.

Ooh, Really!

Flavours intensify during the fermentation process, so be mindful of the strong flavours that you choose to add.  You may, if you love chile peppers, want to add them to this recipe.

Garlic and chile should both be added in small measure first time. Check you’re happy with the balance and that will give you the freedom to add more the next time if you prefer more.  There’s nothing worse than ruining a ferment by adding too much. You can always add extra, but you can’t take away what’s already there once the flavour has infused!

The smaller you chop vegetables, the faster they break down. By default, the surface area is smaller and there is less vegetable to break through, so this recipe is best cut into julienne strips (fine, long strips – they don’t all need to be even) for quick fermentation. I haven’t tried it another way, but my feeling is that it’s wise to cut the cucumber a little thicker than the harder veg, as cucumber ferments really quickly.  If you don’t do this, the cucumber may well be mushy before the cabbage has started to soften and that wouldn’t be a successful ferment, or terribly edible.

Check the video of what happened when the lid was opened after 24 hours!

Aside from eating a spoonful of this recipe as it sits in the jar, I produced a little recipe too.  Super quick and a lovely little snack for you or guests passing by on a summer’s afternoon!

I’ll share that tomorrow. 🙂

Till then …

KISSES - CBemail-signature1

About the Author Sarah Jackson

I love to experiment with food, write, read, walk by the river, watch vintage TV dramas, good documentaries and comedy.

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