Well with a blog name like Lacto Fermented Radishes I’m sure to be screaming up Google’s rankings, before I know it I might crack page 100!!! Lacto Fermentation is a scary name for one of mankind’s oldest forms of preserving foods. Broken down into its basic component it is preserving food with salt and the help of some friendly micro-organisms. The salty brine that the vegetables (radishes in this case) soak in prevents the build up of harmful bacteria while the good bacteria ( yes, there are some good ones out there so lay off on the Purell for a bit) work their magic. The good bacteria also help by producing an acidic environment that helps squelch the bad bacteria’s desire to spoil our food.
Here are the basics of tonight’s experiment in lacto-fermentation:
Kosher Salt (any non-iodized salt will do)
Peeled clove of garlic
Drop a few peppercorns and the peeled clove of garlic into a clean pint mason jar. Mix the brine solution in another clean container. I was making just one pint this evening so I mixed 1 Tbs of salt with 16 oz of bottled water. Fill the jar with the radishes and add the brine, leaving about 1/4 inch of headspace.
Cover them tightly and find a nice dark and cool place to keep them for a few days. This is my first attempt at preserving food with lacto-fermentation so stay tuned as I will be trying them this weekend.
*** Update 5/30 ***
Well I cracked open the jar of radishes on Saturday night. I had two victims, err I mean volunteers, try them. 2 out of 3 testers liked them. The radishes have a nice garlicky saltness to them with just a bit of a sour , reminiscent of a good half-sour dill pickle. I do think my wife was slightly turned off by trying something I had fermented in our pantry but she was game so props to her. I would make these again and look forward to trying some other veggies when they come out of the garden.
Inspired by The Urban Homestead (Expanded & Revised Edition): Your Guide to Self-Sufficient Living in the Heart of the City (Process Self-reliance Series)
and Wild Fermentation: The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods