Regarding sanitizing jars (and similar items):
Another good option is to use Star-San. Go to your local homebrew supply shop, or check out one of the good online ones, and pick up some Star-San concentrate. 1.5mL of that in a quart of cool water makes a food-safe, no-rinse sanitizer. I use the stuff extensively in brewing, but it’s also good for things like this where you want to eliminate bacteria and fungi on hard, clean surfaces. It doesn’t have any chlorine in it, which can contribute off-flavors.
Any idea if that works for canning as well? I have at least a gallon of mangoes that I want to turn into jam, but owing to my lack of counter space find that sanitizing and keeping everything hot and ready for canning is difficult.
Isn’t it also rinse free? There is one I’ve used in home brewing that is rinse free. You let stuff sit in the solution, take the tool/jar/bottle/whatever out and just use it.
For more interesting peppers, try serranos. They’re the “pico” in pico de gallo and were bred for that kind of cold-pepper kick and have a very clean (and somewhat complex) taste.
I grow mine all the way to bright-red (as in Christmas decorations) ripe, then smoke-dry them with mesquite. But that wouldn’t work for making kimchi – which is what your variants sound like.
ETA: Red serranos are the peppers in Sriracha sauce.
It ought to work for jam and such, yes. But part of the reason for using hot jars is to keep them from shattering from the thermal shock when you ladle the hot jam into them. My mom always used to sanitize her jam jars by scalding them with freshly-boiling water, and usually lost one or two jars in the process. I’m not sure how you would go about sanitizing the jars with Star-San and then getting/keeping them hot, but there’s probably a good way of doing that which I have not thought of.
Yes, it is no-rinse. If the stuff you used was red-brown in color, or a light amber color as prepared solution, that was iodophor, which is widely used in the dairy industry and also in homebrewing. It’s also good stuff, but Star-San is better, IMO.
What I do is to mix up Star-San with distilled water in a quart spray bottle (1.5mL of the concentrate, balance distilled water), and just keep it around. When prepared this way, it lasts until used, so it’s super easy to always have on hand. Anything that needs sanitation, just spray it down well with the spray bottle, then drain or shake off any excess.
Edit to add - I use a syringe to meter the Star-San concentrate. If you are making it in a bucket or something for use in the near future, no need to use distilled water - just tap water is fine. If you’re concerned about the efficacy of prepared solution, you can check its pH - anything under 3 is good - over 3, throw it away and make fresh.
Hmm, got me thinking here. My kirby vines are about to go into overdrive, but I’ve been reluctant to try pickles since I’m very picky about the sour pickles I like, and I’d feel terrible hating my own pickles. I also have mini sweet peppers and jalapenos growing. I was planning on smoking the jalapenos for chipotle, but maybe a mix of sweet and jalapeno pickled peppers might be awesome. I had tasted something homemade many years ago that was sweet and hot peppers in a sweetish pickle, but I think it was a cooked with vinegar recipe, not a natural ferment.
PS: the way to get the best, crisp, store bought sour pickles is buy half sours in the refrigerated section and let them sit on the counter for a few days. Doesn’t work if they have preservatives!
… and to any of you mutants who try this out, please be sure to share your experiences in the fermenting thread!
I wonder if you could make freezer jam? My family used to make it with strawberries. That seriouseats post (the link in my first sentence here) mentions mangoes.
I like to use iodophor on the Coke bottles I brew the family root beer in.
Yeah, and @jlw both star San and iodophor are rinse free when used in proper concentrations (it’s on the bottle). I like star San a tad more cause it foams and gets into more crevices, and doesn’t stain like iodophor. But they both work great.
Much more sanitary than throwing a dead rat in your vessel.
It does say rinse-free right on the bottle, but I rinse anyway.
One dip and fill in the iodophore for a few minutes, then empty and the same in fresh, and it’s ready to use.
Bottle bombs scare me more than sanitation.
Kegging, in addition to many other benefits, completely eliminates the risk of bottle bombs. It does, however, cost a lot to start up.
At my most insane I had twelve kegs, two fifteen gallon conicals, a perlick tap, a creamer tap, and an Angram beer engine. SS quick disconnects for everything, two March pumps, and 300 sq feet of dedicated brewing and serving space.
And for those of you who know the lingo, I also had a 55 gallon, 14’ tall cooling management rig that could spit out five gallons of… stuff.
But I’m retired now.
(And yes, I know how to dismantle sanke kegs, how to retrofit ball and pins, and mod/port SS vessels)
I was saved by my glasses, which I rarely wore, one night when a bottle warmed up enough to blow in front of me. A friend and I had a 6 pack we’d brewed on the table and were working our way through. The bottle I didn’t know he’d half filled and capped then sprayed glass into our faces, and the wall behind us. Some scratches but we were both OK.
I have 6-8 2.5 gal corny kegs here. I think 4 are full but I haven’t touched them in a year. I got bored of it, but I’m sure I’ll pick it up again.
A bomb is our right of passage, almost like a secret handshake.
One took out my refrigerator:)
Wouldn’t rinsing make it less sanitary than not-rinsing, after the sanitizing treatment? Do you mean that you rinse in fresh water from the tap, or do you boil it first?
(I worked in the kitchen of a summer camp, that had a ton of old silver-plate silverware, which would rust if left to air-dry, so the campers were tasked with drying all the silverware with towels after it had gone through the dishwashing machine. The Health Department came by to inspect, and they told us that the silverware came out of the dishwasher sanitary, but the towel-drying introduced germs or whatever. So the camp wound up replacing all of the silver-plate silverware with stainless-steel silverware that could dry untouched without rusting. Anyway, I’m imagining that using tap water after sanitizing could introduce new unwanted things…?)
Yes, tap. I feel that the residue iodophor from all the rinsing in the fresh basin covers us pretty well there. No contams yet anyway.