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Old 07-24-2008, 04:29 PM   #21
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I remember when i was really young, My father would take me to the city (New York) and we would go to Gusses pickles. And I remember they sold something called a Roll-mop, or something like this ,

It was a huge whole pickled cabbage leaf. Inside was pickled pepper, saurkraut, other pieces of different kinds of pickles, all rolled up inside the big cabbage leaf.

Id kill for one of them now, to see if it was everything i remember it to be.

And that pickled salad/lettuce looks interesting. What purpose does the bread have ? Does it help in the fermentation? The rye adds flavor ? just curious.
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Old 07-27-2008, 07:55 AM   #22
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This is a recipe for crock-cured, naturally fermented pickles. My grandpa taught me how to make them this way more than 50 years ago. One cannot purchase naturally fermented pickles anymore because the process takes too long to make it commercially profitable; nowadays they use a lot of chemicals. This recipe is the "old fashioned" method and produces a totally unique & delicious pickle.
This recipe is for a 5-gallon crock. If your crock is larger or smaller, adjust the recipe proportionally.
Instructions & Ingredients
Be sure to weigh & measure everything exactly, and take care that the crock, utensils, etc. are scrupulously clean. Wash & dry 18 pounds fresh pickling cukes 3 to 5 inches in length. Be sure to cut about 1/8 of an inch off the blossom end of each cuke; this keeps them from going soft. The blossom end is light green in color as opposed to the darker green of the stem end.
10 1/2 quarts cold well water.
1 cup apple cider vinegar.
2 level cups non-iodized canning salt.
Fresh garlic, dill & hot pepper (optional).
Directions
Pack the cukes fairly tightly into the crock, but not so tight that they bruise. Layer in some dill heads, cut-up garlic & a couple of hot peppers if desired (I personally like lots of garlic, but none of these three ingredients are essential to the recipe). The crock will be only about 3/4 full of cukes; this is intentional so as to leave plenty of headspace for the brine.
Place a dinner plate over the cukes and weigh it down with a large zip-lock bag full of salt water (the salt keeps the water in the zip-lock from getting funky). In a separate container (a food-grade plastic bucket works fine), mix a brine of the water, vinegar & salt. Pour the brine over the cukes. The brine will cover the cukes by at least 2 inches & should nearly fill the crock to the brim. In fact, depending on the density of the cukes you may end up with a little more brine than you need; if so, discard it.
Cover the crock with plastic wrap to keep the air out and place it in a dark place where the temperature will remain between 65 and 80 degrees F. Youíre done for now.
After a couple of days the pickles will begin to ferment and form lactic acid (good bacteria at work). The lactic acid is what imparts the delicious & unique flavor to the pickles that you simply wonít find in the store-bought kind.
Air is the enemy of fermentation and will usually cause a milky-looking scum to form on the surface of the brine. Thatís the reason for the plastic wrap -- to minimize the amount of air contacting the brine. The scum is nothing to be overly concerned about because you will have enough of a brine layer above the pickles to protect them from it. Just check the crock every day and if any scum appears remove it with a clean slotted spoon. The amount of time to complete the fermentation process varies from a couple of weeks in a warm environment to a month or more in a cooler environment. As the pickles ferment, do an occasional taste test until the desired flavor is achieved. From that point the pickles can be consumed directly from the crock for several weeks. But to store them for longer periods it is advisable to transfer the pickles & brine to sterilized canning jars and keep them refrigerated. If you donít have adequate refrigerator space, process & seal the jars in boiling water. By the way, the brine will develop a cloudy appearance; this is normal and is nothing to worry about.
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Old 07-27-2008, 08:25 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michigander View Post
This is a recipe for crock-cured, naturally fermented pickles. My grandpa taught me how to make them this way more than 50 years ago. One cannot purchase naturally fermented pickles anymore because the process takes too long to make it commercially profitable; nowadays they use a lot of chemicals. This recipe is the "old fashioned" method and produces a totally unique & delicious pickle.
This recipe is for a 5-gallon crock. If your crock is larger or smaller, adjust the recipe proportionally.
Instructions & Ingredients
Be sure to weigh & measure everything exactly, and take care that the crock, utensils, etc. are scrupulously clean. Wash & dry 18 pounds fresh pickling cukes 3 to 5 inches in length. Be sure to cut about 1/8 of an inch off the blossom end of each cuke; this keeps them from going soft. The blossom end is light green in color as opposed to the darker green of the stem end.
10 1/2 quarts cold well water.
1 cup apple cider vinegar.
2 level cups non-iodized canning salt.
Fresh garlic, dill & hot pepper (optional).
Directions
Pack the cukes fairly tightly into the crock, but not so tight that they bruise. Layer in some dill heads, cut-up garlic & a couple of hot peppers if desired (I personally like lots of garlic, but none of these three ingredients are essential to the recipe). The crock will be only about 3/4 full of cukes; this is intentional so as to leave plenty of headspace for the brine.
Place a dinner plate over the cukes and weigh it down with a large zip-lock bag full of salt water (the salt keeps the water in the zip-lock from getting funky). In a separate container (a food-grade plastic bucket works fine), mix a brine of the water, vinegar & salt. Pour the brine over the cukes. The brine will cover the cukes by at least 2 inches & should nearly fill the crock to the brim. In fact, depending on the density of the cukes you may end up with a little more brine than you need; if so, discard it.
Cover the crock with plastic wrap to keep the air out and place it in a dark place where the temperature will remain between 65 and 80 degrees F. Youíre done for now.
After a couple of days the pickles will begin to ferment and form lactic acid (good bacteria at work). The lactic acid is what imparts the delicious & unique flavor to the pickles that you simply wonít find in the store-bought kind.
Air is the enemy of fermentation and will usually cause a milky-looking scum to form on the surface of the brine. Thatís the reason for the plastic wrap -- to minimize the amount of air contacting the brine. The scum is nothing to be overly concerned about because you will have enough of a brine layer above the pickles to protect them from it. Just check the crock every day and if any scum appears remove it with a clean slotted spoon. The amount of time to complete the fermentation process varies from a couple of weeks in a warm environment to a month or more in a cooler environment. As the pickles ferment, do an occasional taste test until the desired flavor is achieved. From that point the pickles can be consumed directly from the crock for several weeks. But to store them for longer periods it is advisable to transfer the pickles & brine to sterilized canning jars and keep them refrigerated. If you donít have adequate refrigerator space, process & seal the jars in boiling water. By the way, the brine will develop a cloudy appearance; this is normal and is nothing to worry about.
This is very interesting, though, I don't really understand how this works. Most of the recipes for kim chi and pickles are the same, salt, water and spices/herbs are added and it must stay away from air and no vinegar is added. In your recipe, though, you put in a little vinegar which contains acetic acid, and although you want lactic acid to form ultimately--how does this part work. Does the acetic acid compete with the formation of lactic acid or does it help the lactic acid formation? I took enough chemistry to make me dangerous but not enough to understand how these two acids will work in a pickle crock.
Again, most of the crock pickle recipes I've seen and the ones for saurkraut and kim chi are similar adding water spices/herbs and salt and lactic acid forms on it's own, I'm confused by the addition (not saying it's wrong--I just don't understand) of vinegar.
Hopefully there is someone that has a chemistry background that can help explain what is going on to make this work. TIA ~bliss
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Old 07-27-2008, 11:16 AM   #24
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It has to do with the pH of the water

The pH scale is 0 to 14, seven being neutral. The further below 7, the more acidic; the higher above 7, the more basic. Most municipal water and well water is on the high side of the scale (7.5 to 8.5). The reason for adding a little vinegar is to bring the pH down to somewhere close to neutral; it has nothing directly to do with the lactic acid which will form later. In other words, the only purpose of the vinegar is to begin the fermentation process with a neutral pH water. If you were to use distilled water (which is already neutral), no vinegar would be needed for the recipe (a rather expensive way to go about it). But If you start out with the higher pH water and don't add a little vinegar, any lactic acid that forms will mostly be consumed before the pH gets down to the neutral point, and the pickles would likely spoil. I know this is a long, disjointed response, but I hope it helps.
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Old 07-27-2008, 11:21 AM   #25
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And btw, the reason you don't add vinegar to saurkraut is the water in the cabbage leaves is essentially a neutral pH.
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Old 07-27-2008, 02:38 PM   #26
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Michigander, both your posts make total sense and I appreciate you taking the time to explain it to me. Thank you very much ~bliss
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Old 07-27-2008, 02:53 PM   #27
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Pardon me, but allow me to disagree. The "naturaly fermented" and "vinegar" do not work together. It's either naturaly or vinegar.


Larry, I believe Gusess are shipping nowadays. Check the internet. I love their products. And they are very much natural even today
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Old 07-27-2008, 03:40 PM   #28
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Hey CharlieD,
Whats the purpose of the Rye bread in the pickled salad. IS it for flavor? to help the pickling process?? Im just curious, since i never saw that before .

thanks.

and ill check out the guses online too
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Old 07-28-2008, 12:28 PM   #29
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Larry, I believe it is for fermentation, however I do not know for sure. Just called my mother to ask, she also thought it is for the fermentation, but did not know for sure.
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Old 07-28-2008, 05:58 PM   #30
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Making Fermented Dill Pickles and Sauerkraut, HYG-5342-97
This is from Ohio State University.
The fermented pickles have a little vinegar added to the salt/water spices so I think you must be able to add a little vinegar in the beginning.

Also, if you google 'rye fermentation pickles' there are lots of mentions of rye bread used in fermentation for pickles. It sounds really interesting to me. I'm not quite certain yet but it seems the yeast and starch help feed the fermentation process. ~Bliss
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