Saturday, 2 September 2017

In A Pickle: Follow-Up

As you may have read on HBIC, I decided to partake in a chemistry experiment known as lacto-fermented pickles. The pickle spear to the left? That's one of the many that were plunked into brine with a litany of spices. I promised a taste test as we approached the day of reckoning - aka "put 'em in the fridge day" - and I decided that five days would be the first opportunity to taste-test the results of my chemistry experiment! Would I die? Would I poison myself? Would end up with sort of superpower? We'd soon find out.

First, I should introduce some controls. I made five jars of similar size and contents using old glass pickle jars, so that variable should be fairly controlled. Second, the temperature in my house, thanks to air conditioning, remained between 19.5°C and 22.5°C for all five jars, so this control is also fairly controlled. Lastly, all ingredients were carefully checked and measured before being added to the jars including the brine that was made. Again, this variable is fairly controlled.

Today, five days into the pickle-making experiment, I cracked a jar and sampled my work! And it should be noted that I enjoyed the above spear as best as I could. Because it was not ready. Not even close. Wow.

The chemical reactions hadn't finished what it needed to do as there was still some sweetness to the cucumber. The crunch was definitely noticeable - the tannins from the raspberry leaves are definitely recommended if you embark on this chemical endeavor.

With that sampling, the lid went back on and we'll give it more time. How much? We'll see. It definitely feels like it needs another week, so maybe we'll let it go that long. Once the lacto-fermentation process is done, it should be easy to see since there won't be as much carbon dioxide given off. In any case, it's back onto the counter for another week.

More pickle updates to come! Stay tuned!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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