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Lacto-fermented Zucchini Sticks

Fermenting is much easier and preserves nutrients much better than canning. And on a hot summer day when I've spent the morning in the garden harvesting, I do not want to spend the afternoon in a hot kitchen. With lacto-fermentation, I don't even break a sweat. 
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Course: Condiment
Cuisine: American
Keyword: fermented zucchini
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Fermenting Time: 3 days

Ingredients

  • 1 zucchini squash
  • 2 cloves garlic for each quart jar
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes for each quart jar
  • 3 tablespoons sea salt
  • 4 cups chlorine-free water

Instructions

  • Cut the zucchini into sticks or rounds that will easily fit into a wide mouth canning jar leaving about 2" at the top. Depending on the size of your zucchini, you may need more than one jar. 
  • Add 2 cloves of garlic and the red pepper flakes to each jar. 
  • Make a brine by mixing 3 tablespoons sea salt with 4 cups of filtered water. Do not use chlorinated water, which will hinder the fermentation process.
  • Thoroughly mix the brine and pour over the squash in the canning jar leaving at least an inch of head space at the top. You may need to make more brine if you have several jars of zucchini. 
  • To keep the squash crisp, a grape or oak leaf may be added. Place a fermentation weight on top of the leaf to keep everything submerged. 
  • Cover with an airlock or fermentation lid and put in a dark spot (ie. a kitchen cabinet) for 3 – 5 days. 
  • If you don’t have an airlock system, place the lid loosely on the jar and open it daily to release gases.
  • After 3 -5 days, refrigerate and enjoy as desired.
  • The fermented vegetables will keep for months in the refrigerator.