Seeds, weeds, fermentation and pickling

That hailstorm that made me throw patio furniture across the yard in a useless display of fury? Most of the plants recovered from it, and thrived with the moisture it left.

 

Pickling is Metal Pig’s obsession now. He has pickled jalapenos, cabbage, carrots, cucumbers and asparagus.

I asked him to stop going to the store for food that’s out of season, since the purpose of pickling is to preserve the harvest at its peak for later. Especially if “later” is a cold, dark winter (or, in Colorado, a weird, dark winter with wildly fluctuating temperatures). Ideally, our garden and the area farmers’ markets are the source for pickles.

It’s high-quality, delicious food. Especially kimchi, which I had no use for until he made it. Now I’m nervous when we’re low on kimchi. When he makes a batch we give a jar to my BFF Erin. Unlike the water bath canning and pickling I’ve done, this is just brine and veg fermented in containers at room temperature. Gochujang paste or Taekyung red pepper powder is essential for the heat and flavor. Here is some more in-depth information about kimchi: https://www.koreanbapsang.com/vegan-kimchi/

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For his birthday in May I got him a fermenting jar. There are several types of fermenting vessels to choose from, but not many of them were in stores in my area. One store had an actual variety: the old-school fermenting crock, some nipple-type things for canning jars which we already had, and gallon jars with airlocks. I went with the third option. He had made some good pickles with the canning jars and nipples, and likes how they look like tits, but wanted to be able to make a big tub of sauerkraut. I absolutely recommend both the canning jar/teat method and the gallon jar with valve. The process of fermenting is probably the simplest of food preparation I’ve learned. There are legit health benefits to spicing up your meals with these exciting, colorful, crunchy side dishes.

Metal Pig will pickle anything. But it had not occurred to us to pickle seed pods, like this garden blogger I admire did. I don’t think I will have any type of seed pods like that, as I didn’t grow radishes, but I do grow seeds. And weeds.

 

 

 

 

Author: Fire Horse

I live in Colorado with my husband Metal Pig, our son Evil Genius ("EG") and, for some reason, two Dalmatianesque dogs. One of my dreams is to show a respectable return on the investment I put into growing food in our suburban yard. We love plants but eat them too. I use grandiose terms when describing my garden, like "crops" and "nitrogen levels" but it's too small to be a farm. Maybe one day I'll hitch a miniature horse to a tiny plow and take out the turf grass in the front yard to make room for growing grains.

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