Celebrating diversity and making lemonade...

Celebrating diversity and making lemonade...

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Fermenting vegetables

 In the Kitchen

I had a bumper crop of radish this spring.  I had meant to thin the plants but never got around to it.  Oops!  No worries.  It seems to have worked out.  These radishes even fell in love because they were growing so close together...ahhh...

I had been picking a couple radish each day to add to my salad.  Then, one day I realized that one of the radish had a seed stalk and it was flowering!  So, I quickly pulled all the radish.  This bucket does not look too impressive but this is a 3 gallon bucket completely full of radishes!

I decided to ferment the radish.  This way, I could keep using a couple in my salads over the next few weeks.  I did plant some more radish as I was pulling these out.  I cleaned the radish up and cut off the tops and bottoms and stacked them into jars.

I made up a salt solution of 3 tablespoons salt in 1 quart water.  I used pink salt so that is why my solution is a bit cloudy and pinkish...

After packing the radish into the jars, I poured the solution in and then placed a fermentation lid on top.  This allows the gases to escape as the radish ferment.  It is important to keep all the radish under the solution at all times or you might get contamination.
Put the ferment in a warmish, dark place and leave for 3 days.  At the end of the three days, you can take the fermentation cap off and just put a regular lid on the jar and put in the refrigerator.  The cooler temperature of the refrigerator will stop the fermentation.  Here is a pic of the completed ferment.  Yes, the red color in the radish skin has been bleeded out into the fermentation solution.

The radish are pink all the way through...here is a pic of some pieces of radish that I am using to build my salad...they are the pink triangle shapes...
Here is a pic of the radish blooms.  They sure are pretty.  Some were pink and some were white.  
Since some of the radish were already putting up flower stalks, I just decided to let them go so I could collect the seed.  Here is a pic of the seed pods that will develop the seeds...
That is going to be a lot of seeds!  Did you know...you can actually eat the seed pods!  There are even varieties of radish that are grown specifically for their seeds pods.  I tried some and they are deliciouis!  I even found a recipe that sautéed some radish seed pods and added them to scrambled eggs!  You want to eat the green pods (not when they have already turned brown and are starting to dry down).  They taste like radish!  Surprise!  I also found a recipe for pickled radish seed pods.  You can pickle just about anything.  Just like you can ferment almost anything.  Just a note of distinction...pickling usually involves vinegar and fermentation involves salt.  

The girls got the radish trimmings and they were super happy!
Fermented vegetables do have a different taste and texture.  The radish are still crunchy but they are not crisp.  There are TONS of benefits to eating fermented foods:
1. they are easier to digest (they have been pre-digested by the bacteria during lacto fermentaiton)
2. fermentation makes the nutrients in food more available so they are more nutritious
3. fermented foods help our gut microbiome flourish (more good bacteria...yeah!)
4. fermenting creates new flavors and is a safe way to preserve foods
AND it is super easy to do...cut up vegetables, add salt water, let sit for 3 days, put in fridge...done!  Easy peasy!  I LOVE to ferment salsa and can't wait for the tomato crop to start soon!

Have an eggcellent day!


No comments:

Post a Comment