We get a lot of questions about fermenting by email. Most of our customers are first time ferment-ers, and it can be an intimidating process when you're not sure what you're doing! We love getting emails from customers and having a chance to interact. Being an online business, we don't get a lot of direct communication with our customers, and enjoy the opportunity to help someone out!
We will be taking time over the next few weeks here on the blog to share some of the most common questions we get via email. We figure there are a lot more people out there with questions like these!
Does the Crock need to be full?
If you're fermenting for the first time, you might not want to invest in the prep time and ingredients to fill a full 5 or 10 liter fermenting crock. And the great news is, you don't have to!
You can absolutely do a smaller amount of ingredients as a sample run. This is also a great way to try out a new recipe if you're more experienced. Just make sure you have enough to cover the bottom of the crock at least 3" to make sure your ferment is fully submerged below the brine.
Getting the ratio of salt right is the key, so be careful when adjusting the quantities to keep the ratio the same. Temperature and salt have the most control over how long the fermentation process takes. If you have too little salt, it won't kill the bad bacteria and the cabbage will rot instead of fermenting. However, if you have too much salt it will kill the good bacteria too and it won't sour or ferment.
Just remember that it's an experimentation process and each batch will be a little different. And of course, have fun with it!
Remember, if you try something and it doesn't work out, you can always email me - firstname.lastname@example.org - and we can troubleshoot together!