When cauliflower is in season, consider preserving some using the lacto-fermentation method. This fermented cauliflower recipe preserves the florets as tasty and crunchy little tidbits packed with probiotics.
Fermentools sent me a kit to experiment with. I’ve found them to be an excellent and easy way for me to start fermenting successfully. This is a sponsored post.
My first attempt at lacto-fermentation?
It didn’t go so well. First, the whole idea of letting fresh food sit out on the counter until it ferments goes against everything I’ve ever been taught about cooking. But beyond that, I was trying to cobble together a system that left me with a moldy, uh, buggy mess that ended up in the compost.
It’s a simple thing, but it’s essential that the food you’re trying to ferment remain completely submerged under the brine. Mine did not. Thus, the big ole fat fail.
That was two or three years ago.
While I continued to make my kimchi, I simply hadn’t delved into any more attempts at lacto-fermentation. Until now. Let me tell you: The little glass weights that come as part of every Fermentools kit? They are brilliant. They fit perfectly into a wide mouth jar to hold down the ingredients while they transform into lacto-fermented goodness. No more finagling some sort of weight that might (maybe? kind of?) work!
Related: Spicy Fermented Sugar Snap Peas
Fermented cauliflower recipe
You know those jars of pickled vegetables that include carrots and celery and pickled cauliflower?
The carrots and celery are completely taking up prime real estate that could otherwise be used by cauliflower. So when I decided to try this whole lacto-fermentation business again, I decided to start with my favorite: Cauliflower. Surely, this lacto-fermented cauliflower recipe would result in crispy cauliflower just as tasty as the pickled version?
It took me 25 minutes, start to finish, to assemble three pints of cauliflower — and that included tracking down a couple of wide mouth jars (still packed from our move) and washing them, unpacking my kit from Fermentools, plus a quick jaunt to the garden to grab a couple of peppers. Someone more organized than me could probably have done it in ten.
Whether you grow your own cauliflower or pick it up from the produce section, you’ll start by cutting the cauliflower into manageable pieces and giving them a good rinse. Then it’s a simple matter of packing the fresh cauliflower into jars and covering it with a salt brine. Really, this fermented cauliflower recipe couldn’t be easier!
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Lacto-Fermented Cauliflower Recipe
These crunchy cauliflower bites are excellent for snacking and pack a probiotic punch. Serve this fermented cauliflower on a crudite platter, alongside a sandwich, or straight out of the jar.
- 4 cups water see recipe notes
- 2 tablespoons sea salt or pickling salt
- 1 head of cauliflower
- 3 hot peppers
- 3 cloves garlic
Mix water and salt to make brine; set aside. Place one pepper and one garlic clove in each jar.
Cut cauliflower into bite sized pieces and divide between jars, then divide brine over cauliflower to cover. (If you don’t have quite enough brine, you can add water to top off each jar.)
- Place glass weight on top of the cauliflower to assure it’s submerged. Set Fermentools rubber ring and lid in place, screw on a band (from your stash), then place the airlock into the hole.
Set in an out of the way place to ferment for 3-5 days. (There’s potential for these to overflow a little, so set fermenting jars in a pan of some sort to catch drips.)
Test the cauliflower after a few days; if you’re happy with the level of fermentation, replace the Fermentools lid with a regular canning lid and refrigerate. Not quite ready? Leave out on the counter for another day or two. Be sure to use a clean utensil to remove cauliflower — using fingers could contaminate the brine.
Water: Municipal tap water contains chlorine, which can inhibit fermentation. Use spring or distilled water instead.
Salt: Salt with iodine or anti-caking agents can inhibit fermentation.
Brine: Four cups of brine is enough for approximately three pint jars of cauliflower.
It's critical that the veggies remain completely submerged in the brine. The Fermentools weights are great for this!