Fermented Leeks

Have you ever wanted to ferment veggies at home, but thought it was too difficult? Making fermented veggies is actually really easy! I was recently invited to do a demonstration at The Hub Halifax for an event about harvesting, and I wanted to do something more hands-on than just talk, so I demonstrated an easy way to ferment leeks.

My fermenting demonstration at the Hub Halifax

Harvest event at the Hub Halifax

This “recipe” is so easy, I demonstrated it in a conference room while talking to a crowd.

Here are the steps:

  1. Slice some leeks.
  2. Cover with 4% brine.
  3. Wait.

That’s it!

Ok, ok, I’ll elaborate a bit for those of you who have never fermented before.

Slice 3 to 4 leeks between 5 to 10mm, and rinse well. Make sure you get the dirt out from between the rings. You can use some of the green parts, but I used mostly the white parts. Put them in a clean 1 litre mason jar.

4% brine means that for every 100 gm of water, you’re going to add 4% grams of salt, which, is 40 gm per litre of water, or about 1 1/2 to 2 tbsp. Use non-iodized salt. It can be sea salt or pickling salt.

Dissolve the salt in the water and pour over the leeks. You should have enough brine to cover them completely and then some.

Take one of the leftover leek tops and fold it so it fits into the mouth of the jar and keeps the slices below the surface of the brine. That’s important, you want the leeks to stay covered. Then put the jar lid on and wait.

The fermentation will produce carbon dioxide, so you have to unscrew the lid once every day to release the pressure. There are specially made fermenting jars with airlocks that will eliminate the need to manually release the pressure, but they’re completely unnecessary.

Your leeks will be fermented in 5 to 10 days, depending on how you like them. When you’re happy with them, put them in the fridge. You can enjoy them as you would pickles or saurkraut, or on their own as a probiotic supplement.

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