Monday, August 12, 2013

Fermenting and Mould

I forgot about my fermenting veg in the basement and when I picked them up to take the parchment off, I saw this... It had been 5 days. I quickly skimmed off the mould, rinsed the veg with some fresh water, and put it in the fridge to do some research on whether they would be safe to eat...  Of course the internet had lots of conflicting advice, as did my mother. A few thoughts that I've uncovered:
*A little bit of scum on the top is normal, as long as the veg is submerged. Skim it off the top and replace with more salted water (mum, internet)
*Toss everything! Don't risk it! (internet)
*The lactic acid in the brine protects the veg. Skim off the mould and keep eating, as long as the veg are submerged. (Sandor Katz)

The beans looked pretty ok, just that bit of "scum" on the top, I ate them and was fine.  I did completely dump the liquid and leave it in the fridge though. 
The other 2 I haven't decided yet.... I think I will start with the larger jar of pickles, eat one and see if I feel ok.  That black stuff on the small jar makes me nervous....

Moving forward, though, I'm only going to use sea salt (I used pickling salt which made things taste super salty and all this mould business has happened whereas my other ferments are fine) and I'll use a little less salt too (apparently too much salt doesn't allow the lactic acid to do its thing and so keep your veg safe)

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