Unrefrigerated fermented food storage

How long can you leave fermented onions, peppers, sauerkraut, or the like without refrigeration?

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following…

It depends. If you have a root cellar, and are willing to put in the required ounce of salt per 2lb (or 30grams per kg for those of the metric persuasion), months, from fall to early summer. It is important to also keep the veggies under liquid, possibly adding water over time. If you increase the temperature, decrease salinity, allow pieces to be exposed to air, less. There is a reason why the old sauerkraut crockpots had two half moon pieces to force the krauts underwater. You may also want to experiment with even more salt, say 1.2 ounces. My only experiment with that gave a kraut that would not spoil no matter what. But it is quite a bit of salt, and use it as a condiment/digestive aid, for which it is excellent.

Note that during initial fermentation you want higher temps (65 is ideal), and replenish liquid as it evaporates or is bubbled out of the jar (you always replenish as needed). After fermentation (about a week), colder temp. I do make krauts for quick consumption, with half the salt, but they are gone in 2-3 weeks.

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Fermenting foods is more than just a good way to store it, a diet heavy in their consumption will likely become the latest health craze if research like this continues to support its results. Fermented-food diet increases microbiome diversity, decreases inflammatory proteins, study finds | News Center | Stanford Medicine

My wife is even making a batch of kimchi for me for the first time- I often follow research based food fads. Diet and exercise are two things I’m happy to pursue for a longer and healthier life.

On the exercise front, research indicates that very strenuous car-vas exercise may lead to the regeneration of brain cells. I’m fighting back to stay above moron status. Now that I have social security, I want to cash in as long as possible.

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I’m also using my fermented kraut, peppers and onions partly because of the research on the microbiome diversity; we also eat some yoghurt at least a few times a week, often daily. Add that to a diet high in fiber and your gut will love you - and the regularity is a real plus too.

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That’s very useful and much appreciated. Pretty much answers the question. Thank you.

This is a good source book for fermented foods .

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its sitting right next to me near my p.c. great book!

I like the digestive properties of sauerkrauts, and of course they are a vitamin C bomb (about ten times better than oranges) with much added quality (since many vitamin C compounds are present). The added absorption of minerals (they double absorption of Ca and Mg, and also iron, zinc, and other micronutrients) is a good thing but not important to me, since a diet high in animal foods has the same effect.

But it is not worth following recipes. Someone gives you a 5kg bag of veggies in midsummer? put them all in the crockpot. Somehow high quality veggies make better krauts. In August I did get such a bag, one very large cabbage, tomato, peppers and chard, maybe 7kg all told. those were all the veggies for about 7 weeks (I do not eat unfermented veggies at home). The only rule for me, make sure that the carb content in the mix is of order 100 Kcal/kg, because IMHO the bacteria need food and krauts without are worse tasting. That means that some fruits find their way in (the aforementioned, but also eggplants, apples, zucchini, pears and squash), more if there is more green stuff. Roots too provide extra sugar.

IMHO, vegetable variety helps bacterial variety. If you have chard in there, some strain that can degrade oxalic acid will make a colony. If not, you might not. And also try to make a fermentation that is as anaerobic as possible. The bacteria should be forced to eat the nitrogen compounds in the mix, which are a large fraction of toxic compounds in veggies. Fermentation is for detoxification after all.

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I remember growing a row of “Copenhagen Market” cabbage for a 4-H project in 1970 or thereabouts…put up the cabbage in a 10 gallon stone crock…salt, cabbage water. Ate 'kraut for a year from it…even unheated at times right from the crock. Made in summer…90’s…and it got chilly in that room of the house in the winter…near freezing during real cold spells.

wonder what mom did with that old crock?

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when i was stationed in Korea 32 years ago many living in the country didnt have electricity. they would put their kimchi crocks in holes dug into the mountain near their homes. some of them would be 20gal. when done fermenting, they would pull them out, put them on someone’s back and hike it back down the mountain to the house just being held on there by the carriers’ hands. impressive to watch. those little Koreans had strong backs/ legs.

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