Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Not until I was leaving the house this morning full of energy with three errands to accomplish before my exercise class, did I realize how completely lethargic I've been for the last week. I really didn't even want to cook, grill, drive, it was so hot. So, though I made it to the farmstand on Sunday morning before the heat was too oppressive, by the time I got home I was didn't even have the motiviation to admire my market finds. Whatever had I been thinking as I bought a couple of pounds of Persian cucumbers? I could barely make dinner that night, let alone make pickles.
It took until today, a beautiful sunny, humidity-free day, for me to finally get out the Ball jars. Last year, I made some unbelievable tangy, sweet and sour pickles that crunched when you bit in even months after I made them. But those take 8 days to make, not even counting sitting time, and although I've regained some of my heat-suppressed energy, I haven't regained some of my much needed ability to focus on something for longer than a couple of minutes. So lacto-fermentation it was, with food52 to the rescue with the perfect recipe. Lacto-fermentation sounds scary - it conjures up pictures of bulbous, cartoon like, blue-green-purple bacteria (and what's with the "lacto"? Milky?), but it seems to mean that I just put the cucumbers in a jar with some garlic, dill and salt water and let them sit for three days. At the end of three days, I am supposed to check the jars and make sure the water seems fizzy, which will indicate that lacto-fermentation is successfully underway and that I can refrigerate my pickles for later use. Piece of cake on an 85 degree day!