I gifted Tristan a crock for the holidays. It has been sitting patiently on the shelf for over half a year, waiting to be put into service. Today we finally took it for a test drive with our first batch of pickles for the season.
Last year's, we made simple pickles using an old-world lacto-fermented recipe. The resulting pickles were serviceable, but frankly waaaaay too salty for my taste, and the recipe didn't call for dill or other traditional pickling spices. This year we are using Sandor Katz's recipe from Wild Fermentation. If they come out anything like the description, they should be traditional sour dills, like the kind you would find in a good Jewish deli.
Both of us were surprised that the recipe called for a handful of grape leaves. Supposedly the tannins in the leaves help keep the pickles crunchy.
I've always made pickles in mason jars in the past. I'm excited to see how the crock does, and I'm hoping that it will lend itself to continuous additions. When we get more cukes from the CSA, we should be able to add them to the crock, along with beans and other garden veggies. Has anyone else had success with a continuous pickle-crock-in-progress?