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Lacto-Fermentation 101

Lacto-fermented Baby Cucumbers

Here is a simple recipe for what people colloquially know as gherkins. These sweet & sour pickles are great as a snack, sliced on burgers or tempura battered and deep fried for a naughty little side dish.

2kg Locally Grown Baby Cucumber (Sometime know as Kirby Cucumbers)

Filtered Water (Measurements in method)

Good Quality Salt (Measurements in method)

3g Fennel Seeds

10g Fresh Dill

1g Black Pepper Corns

20g Fresh Garlic

Add all ingredients (except the water and salt) to a deep vessel which is easy to loosely cover.

Fill the vessel with water and weigh the total volume (excluding the weight of the original vessel)

Get your calculator out and work out 3% of the total weight of all the ingredients including the water. This is the amount of salt you will need.

Strain some of the water off and dissolve the salt into it. This method will allow you to accurately weigh the correct proportions without having to compensate for displacement.

Return all ingredients back to the fermentation vessel and ensure everything is submerged. You can buy fermentation weights for this but any sterilised weight will work e.g river stones

Allow to ferment for 7-10 days in a room dark spot and refrigerate when the pickles are sweet, sour but still have a little snap.

Once you have mastered this technique, you can apply it to a wide range of fruits and vegetables. Pictured is some end of season’s strawberries, fermenting for a taste of the summer when the nights draw in.


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