Step-by-step: your own pickled vegetables with the pickle press

So you want to get started with the pickle press? Fun! Fermenting your own vegetables is really easy. We explain step by step how to do it, so that every pickle succeeds!
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6 January 2021

The pickle press = fermenting for beginners

Have you never fermented vegetables? With the help of the pickle press it really becomes easy. You put in fruit and vegetables, wait a few hours and voilà: your actual pickled vegetable. Fermenting for dummies!

The pickle press for short fermentations

Our pickle press are used for short fermentations, ranging from half an hour to about 7 days. Salt initiates fermentation. The amount of salt you use for short fermentations is 2% of the vegetable weight. So you use 8 grams of salt for 400 g of vegetables.

pickle press - fermentation press for fermenting

Step 1: choose your favorite vegetable and / or fruit.

Think of cabbage, beetroot, carrot, onion, cucumber, eggplant or radish. But plums, pineapple and mango are also good. Cut the vegetables or fruit into strips, cubes or (wafer-thin) slices. Your party!

Step 2: choose your favorite seasoning.

With a good choice of seasonings you give your pickle character. Ideally, you provide a combination of flavors: seaweed for umami, a soy sauce for salt and sushi vinegar or ume for sour. Choose wisely 😉 For most seasonings a few tablespoons on a full pickle press are enough. You can hold a teaspoon with miso and ume.

  1. genmai su (sushi vinegar unsweetened) – sour
  2. ume su – acidic
  3. umepasta – salt and sour
  4. umeboshi (in thin strips) – salt and sour
  5. shoyu– salt
  6. tamari – salt
  7. miso – salt
  8. kombu seaweed (in wafer-thin strips) – umami
  9. arame seaweed (Soaked for 5 minutes and rinsed) – umami
  10. instant wakame seaweed (Soaked for 5 minutes and rinsed) – umami
  11. ginger syrup – sweet
  12. mirin – sweet

Step 3: choose your favorite herbs (optional)

Preferably use whole seeds, because the taste of fresh herbs really provides more flavor. So mortar them or grind them fine in a spice grinder. These herbs do well in pickles:

  1. mustard seed (jacked)
  2. caraway seeds (jacked)
  3. fennel seeds (jacked)
  4. aniseed (jacked)
  5. chili grains (jacked)
  6. ginger (grated)

Step 4: knead the salt into the vegetables.

So you use 2% salt on your vegetable weight. Do you do a very short fermentation, for example of half an hour? Then use a little less than 2%. Are you moving towards the 7 days? Then use a little more than 2%.

Knead the salt into the vegetables. In Japan kneading is seen as an important part of pickling. You bruise the cell structure of the vegetable, which helps to initiate the pickle process, but which also has a further effect on the digestion.

The sea salt starts the fermentation. During this process, the press creates pressure, which creates moisture. Most of the salt now absorbs into the moisture.

Step 5: Be patient for a few hours.

Soft vegetables such as cucumber, tomato and spinach require a fermentation of half an hour to an hour. The harder the vegetables and the larger the pieces, the longer the fermentation. Keep a maximum of 7 days. Taste in between. It should be crispy and salty (but not too salty).

A layer of moisture is created during pickling. Much of the salt is in the moisture, so you usually throw it away. Is your pickle still too salty? Then rinse the vegetables.

Step 6: optimally flavor your pickle.

Complete your pickle with these (combination of) products:

  1. tahini
  2. peanut butter or nut butters
  3. sesame oil
  4. furikake
  5. black or white sesame seeds
  6. umeboshi 
  7. umepasta

Step 7: Store your pickle in the fridge.

Can’t get it all at once? You can keep most pickles in the fridge for about 3 days.

pickle van boerenkool met furikake, gemaakt met pickle pers

Do you have questions? Ask them via Facebook or Instagram or read über cool fermentation book by Peter van Berckel: Tsukémono.

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