Friday, October 31, 2014

Kimchi Out, Kraut In

This latest batch of kimchi was ready to go into jars.  The flavor is good, all the characteristic ginger, garlic, scallion, chili, etc tastes are there for kimchi, but it's a little weak, because I stretched the spice paste over too much cabbage, and it's a little salty, probably from the brine step.  Totally edible, don't get me wrong, and I think it will only get better.  There was a bunch of extra brine, which was delicious, and struck me as being very "meaty."  The whole process is getting smoother.

And this carboy-kraut was more than ready to hit the crock.  I fermented it in a carboy with an airlock, so while it was totally protected from all sources of oxygen, and did not grow any mold or fancy-colored bacteria for two weeks, it was not entirely submerged in brine.  Opening up the carboy for the first time there was a vaguely "off" smell, mostly carbon dioxide, which took me aback, and some sulfur-y smells, maybe a little like horseradish?  It was very soft, but not very sour, so I packed it into a crock.  There was also lots of extra brine in this one too, and it was strangely sweet.  I'm hoping it sours up nicely now that it's submerged and exposed to a *bit* of air.  I kinda like soft, pungent kraut.