Saturday, 11 October 2008

My first try at lactofermentation...

So I've had two heads of cabbage in the bottom of my fridge for some time - a big one and a small one. The small one had been in there for many months, and when I took it out with the hopes of making some kimchi with it today, it was too far gone. So it was chopped up to be added to the compost. But, the big cabbage that I got from the organic CSA farm this summer was still good except for a few outer leaves, and so I decided to tackle my kimchi project after all.

I first read about lacto-fermentation and making kimchi at Sharon Astyk's site - no surprise there! I also did some more searching around the internet and found what seemed like another easy kimchi method. I decided to combine the two methods, taking heart from Sharon's reassurances that lactofermentation was a fairly forgiving process.

I chopped up the cabbage into thin strips and salted it down with pickling salt (purchased to make pickled beans a few months ago). I added a little bit of water so the whole mixture was dampish. It didn't take long for the cabbage to start becoming soft and compressing even as I was still just mixing it with my hands.

I put a clean plate on top of the mixture, put a clean bag around the bowl and the plate, and weighted the whole thing down with my sugar cannister. Now it has to sit overnight. Then I'll put it in canning jars and add some more brine, along with chile peppers, garlic and some ginger and sugar. And then I'll see what happens next! If this works out, I may even get up the courage to try making yogurt.

Has anyone else tried any new recipes or food preservation techniques lately?


Maggie said...

Hi Theresa
I have tried pickled mustard greens, chilli jam, saurkraut, pickled daikon and have some grape vine leaves ready to make dolmades.
I love trying new things and some work some do not.
There are so many indigenous food cultures worth preserving. My next project is to find out how to make a wonderful steamed nettle rice cake. One of our members Ting made this, as she remembers the village women in Taiwan made, it but as yet we have not found any recipe or reference to it.

Maggie said...

You and your readers must join KGI -Kitchen Gardeners International.
It has a great forum where you can discuss all kitchen and garden related issues.
Kathryn, an Aussie living in Turkey, has just posted a dried vegetable soup recipe that the locals make. She mentions how the people are self sufficient and grow all there own food.

Theresa said...

Hi Maggie - thanks for the encouragement! The KGI site sounds wonderful - I will check it out...