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Chai spice pickled green tomatoes?! OOH!

 
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I bought a jar of these yesterday, OH MY!! Tru Spiced Chai Pickles


They are basically a bread and butter pickle variant, less sugar than most B&B pickles  I have had recently (they seem to be nothing but syrup to me :P) and spiced really nicely!

Looking up a recipe for them to see what others have done, I hit this Four ways to pickle green tomatoes and my head said Chai Spiced Green Tomato Pickles!!
It's the time of year to be picking off green tomatoes, and I have some that are chilling off soon, it dropped to 43 last night. I think I'm getting creative in the kitchen later! :D

So I'll be going off her variants, making up one of my own, with cinnamon, cloves, cardamon, ginger and, knowing me, red chile. I think I have a plan!

:D
 
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Pearl Sutton wrote:They are basically a bread and butter pickle variant, less sugar than most B&B pickles  I have had recently (they seem to be nothing but syrup to me :P) and spiced really nicely!



I am a huge fan of bread and butter pickles.  Still working on reliably growing enough cukes to make my own, but the urgency has gone up because: you are not wrong about the syrup thing.  Recently I discovered that Vlasic brand B&B pickles had started to taste funny, so I looked at the ingredient lable.  Those bastards are now adding sucralose (an artificial sweetener) on top of the usual amount of corn syrup!  Which tastes bitter and "off" for starters, if you're sensitive to fake-sugar flavors.  I think they may have reduced the corn syrup a tiny bit to make their nutritional info label look better, but decided at the same time to bet on the American consumer not having any concept of "too sweet".  They are disgusting pickles now, and perforce off my list.
 
Pearl Sutton
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Dan Boone: I went toward not so sweet foods many years ago, and it's been at least 25-30 years since I had B&B pickles I like. I tried some on a salad bar a while back, they were sweeter than the canned pears on the same salad bar, the pears were in light syrup, which was less sweet tasting. I haven't read a label on them for probably 15 years (when looking to see what was in some odd pickles at Big Lots) but I am not surprised they are adding more sweetener. These looked interesting enough to try a jar to taste them.

And chai is one of my favorite things in the world :) I used to backpack a lot, and always made chai for breakfast when out in the mountains, it made me peaceful and happy :D My backpacking buddy slept later than me, and he loved waking up to the smell of chai brewing over a fire.
Staff note (Pearl Sutton):

I was asked how I do chai over the fire, I wrote it up here: https://permies.com/t/127366/kitchen/Chai-fire

 
Pearl Sutton
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And I'm about to look up details for doing a butternut squash chai pickle, had a butternut break on the way home from the store the other day, that sounds like fun :) That would add sweetness, without sweetener. Need to see if that's raw pack or cooked, water bath or pressure canned. I'm betting pressured, no matter raw or cooked.
 
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Pearl, in Estonia they make a winter squash pickle that is raw diced squash with light syrup of vinegar, sugar, and cloves.  Tasty and refreshing.
 
Pearl Sutton
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Mk Neal wrote:Pearl, in Estonia they make a winter squash pickle that is raw diced squash with light syrup of vinegar, sugar, and cloves.  Tasty and refreshing.


That sounds good!
Will try it soon, I'm a squash junkie:)
 
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Well since we`re talking squash junkies-- there is a type of sweet here that I`ve never seen anything like in North America, you might enjoy trying it.

Cube up butternut or other winter squash. Put them in a lime (builder`s lime, not the fruit- the recipe I use calls for 2T of lime in 2L of water) solution and let them soak for a few hours, which gives them a weird crunchy texture when they're done. Then drain, wash well, and boil up in a sugar syrup with cinnamon, star anise, cloves for about half an hour. We usually can these up in jars to give as gifts, it is a very old-fashioned thing that nowadays is rather hard to find- I last saw it at a wedding out in the country.
 
Pearl Sutton
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Tereza: Oh NEAT!! Now I'm wondering if I have builder's lime around... I might. Not sure how food grade anything I'd have is, I use it as part of cement mixes. Wondering what else I can substitute for it that might be less iffy, it's a highly alkaline calcium carbonate... (If anyone tries this with lime, be warned, lime burns just like acid does, wear gloves, cover surfaces, it's dangerous stuff!! Treat it like battery acid. This is why I'm looking for a safer substitute...)

Oh! Eggplant is highly alkaline, that's why it kind of burns your mouth if you eat it raw, wonder if that would have the same effect? Certainly easy enough to try. Baking soda is also alkaline. Hm...  I feel an experiment coming on!!
 
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you are entirely right, lime is nothing to fool around with.

what we use is calcium oxide, preferably food grade (hydrated lime - https://www.azurestandard.com/shop/product/food/baking-pantry/calcium-hydroxide/cal-lime-calcium-hydroxide-food-grade/20410?package=BP426).
it is the same thing you use to nixtamalize corn, so you might find it if you have Latino communities making masa near you.
I have heard of this food grade unicorn but have never found it-- I have the construction version in my yard, and since it is washed out I use it for this (and for making masa with whole corn).

Interestingly, another name for this hydrated lime is pickling lime, which makes me wonder what kind of other recipes are out there.
 
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Oh! I have the kind you use to nixtamalize corn, packed down deep, not reachable right now. And pickling lime, I had forgotten that word, I know you make pickles squeak by soaking them in pickling lime, rinsing them well, and then pickling.
When working with lime in concrete, if you don't wear gloves, it sucks all the moisture out of your hands, and then it starts burning, but the dehydration comes first. I bet that's the point here, to remove water as well as damage the cell walls.
I had the grocery store on my list today, I'll grab an eggplant, and see if they have pickling lime.

Looking it up online:

In the past, pickling lime was used to ensure firm, crunchy pickles. Today, pickling lime is used less often due to dangers that arise from improper use of the powder.

 Yup. I can see that. It IS hazardous. Eggplant isn't.

The purpose of food-grade lime is to preserve the pickles' firmness, and a similar firming agent, alum, is sometimes used instead of lime in some pickling recipes.

 Oooh, alum! I have that!

Because the Lime is alkaline, you have to get rid of it all, or it would neutralize the acidity that you are going to use to preserve the pickles with. People haven't always rinsed it thoroughly, though, leaving some alkalinity and raising the pH of the pickling batch by neutralizing the acidity.

And that's where you get the botulism I have seen mentioned also. Se if you do this, RINSE IT OFF VERY WELL!!

I think eggplant is sounding safer. I'll get one today. I'll try the alum too.


 
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@ Pearl Sutton - I'm now confused. Are you going to try to use the eggplant to temporarily make the squash more alkaline?  If that's what you mean, it doesn't matter *what* you use to make the target veggie more alkaline - if you don't wash it off well, it will still neutralize the acidity of the recipe, and that will still raise the risk of botulism. You either have to get rid of the alkaline material before canning, or increase the acid - more vinegar, or some recipes call for adding lemon or lime juice, to get the same level of protection. (This is from *very* old chemistry class and hopefully a *real* chemist will come along and make this make sense to me.)

Alternatively, my potentially faulty logic would suggest not just rinsing in water, but consider a second rinse in water with vinegar added? (Repeat brackets from above - Chemists, please come and help!)

OR you choose a method of canning that has the same effect of protecting against botulism. Pressure canning for a longer period will do that, but it tends to undo the effect of getting crunchy food that you were looking for. When I'm trying to make pickles and *want* some crunch, I try to make sure the acid is high enough that I feel comfortable "pasteurizing" rather than canning. This involves keeping the bath water in a *very* narrow range -  180-185F for 30 min. which I find quite difficult to do, so I only do so when I'm looking for that "crunch". http://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_06/low_temp_pasteur.html gives a bit more info, and here - http://www.pickyourown.org/pickledbreadbutterzucchini.htm#pasteur - gives a specific zucchini recipe which uses the technique.

All that said, very few people get botulism now-a-days, because most manuals about home canning have done everything they can to protect themselves as well as their clients. Jam that used to rely on a 5 min boiling water bath in my childhood, now calls for 10 to 15 minutes. Many modern recipes call for adding lemon juice, but I blame that on the fact that many "modern" fruits and vegetables have had more sweetness bred into them, and acid bread out, so I think there is more than one factor at work.

Please keep us posted on your experiments!
 
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Jay Angler wrote:@ Pearl Sutton - I'm now confused. Are you going to try to use the eggplant to temporarily make the squash more alkaline?  If that's what you mean, it doesn't matter *what* you use to make the target veggie more alkaline - if you don't wash it off well, it will still neutralize the acidity of the recipe, and that will still raise the risk of botulism. You either have to get rid of the alkaline material before canning, or increase the acid - more vinegar, or some recipes call for adding lemon or lime juice, to get the same level of protection. (This is from *very* old chemistry class and hopefully a *real* chemist will come along and make this make sense to me.)

Alternatively, my potentially faulty logic would suggest not just rinsing in water, but consider a second rinse in water with vinegar added? (Repeat brackets from above - Chemists, please come and help!)


Yes. Planning to substitute blendered up eggplant for the lime, and rinse it really well, and in a second vinegar rinse, before doing anything else to it.
Not trying to be confusing, trying not to be by speculating ahead of time things I might not end up doing for one reason or another :)
And will keep you up on it!
 
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Thanks for clarifying. Sounds delicious! I wish I was close enough for a taste-test.  If you want crunch as well as flavour, I suggest you read the links about pasteurization. I set a timer for 5 min. repeatedly to check on the temperature of the bath while feeling like I'm not standing there watching a pot simmer. The amount of electricity changes over time, even though I start with hot pickles and hot jars, so it does take repeated tweaking to keep it in the zone.
 
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but the issue is only canning- you can still fool around with this stuff if you're not looking at long-term storage. (i don't can for space and oh-man-not-another-thing-for-me-to-do type reasons). I keep this squash candy business refrigerated, don't leave it out, and it never lasts long enough to worry about. i'd send you some, because now I have a hankering for it and will have to make it!!! lol
 
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just came from the store, there was no eggplant, I got alum and pickling lime. We shall see!! :D  
A problem with tiny towns, things like eggplant are iffy to find.
I'll actually measure stuff etc, so others can see what I did. I don't usually do so. I think mom has measuring spoons in her tea stuff. I know I don't in the cooking stuff.
I'll probably not can it down either, I don't expect it to last. :9
Off to cut up squash!
 
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You can find pickling/slaked/hydrated lime at Wal-Mart and most any grocery around here, in the canning supplies. It's cheap, and specifically for food. I think it's also used in fermented pickles, and I know it's supposed to be a good way to preserve raw eggs, to store, too
 
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My report, finally!!
I put 3/4 of the squash in one bowl, the other 1/4 in another. The bigger bowl got 4 cups of water (enough to cover it) and 2 Tablespons of lime. The smaller bowl got 2 cups of water and 1 T alum.  Covered and left on the counter.
Next day I checked them, not doing anything interesting. That night I checked them again, nothing still. Rechecked the package of lime, it called for 1 cup of lime per 2 gallons of water. Rechecked my math, yup, 2 T is correct. The recipe on the package is for cucumbers though, which are softer than squash. So I doubled the amounts in them, adding another 2 T lime to the bigger bowl, and 1 T alum to the smaller one..

And then I got busy. And they sat longer than I planned. So today, 5 days after I put them in, I cleaned them well, soaked them in multiple changes of water. The stuff in lime, at that point, was a bit bland, but neat texture! The stuff in alum was similar texture but sweeter, if I had been asked to identify what it was, I'd have said just the center core of a carrot. So then they got cooked. Both in sugar water (didn't want to get too weird with the concept, had already tortured the recipe!) the lime'd squash got cloves and garam masala added, the alum'd squash got fresh ginger. Both cooked slowly for a bit over an hour, till there was almost no liquid left. The alum'd squash was excellent flavored, but had gone mushy, not as mushy as you'd expect cooked squash to be, but definitely had little texture.  The lime'd squash still had all of it's texture, retained shape and firmness, as well as excellent flavor.
The texture is hard to describe. Crispy-soft? Gently firm? It's weird. Very good though.

So what happened to my experimental victims? Some of the alum'd squash got put into a cheesecake that had no other sweetener added, the lime'd squash makes an awesome topping on said cheesecake :D

An interesting aside, I left these on the counter for 5 days, well covered, and there was no decomposition of any sort going on. When you pickle things in vinegar you are moving the pH out of the range that bacteria can live in, into the high acid range, and strong alkaline has the same effect, apparently. When I realized I had spaced them out, I was wondering if I was going to have to just toss them, and I inspected it all  very closely as they were repeatedly soaked and rinsed and resoaked.

So my final opinions:
I will do this with the lime again, using other things as victims, this is interesting. Thank you Tereza for the idea :D
The alum would be very effective on things that are not as hard/dense as raw butternut cut into 1/2 inch cubes.
It does stop bacterial growth.
WEAR YOUR GLOVES AND GLASSES if you do this!!  It's not something to be non-careful with. YOU CAN GET HURT EASILY!!!
it will also burn countertops, and eat cloth. And be sure to use a glass or ceramic bowl, will eat plastic, and damage metal (and get metal in your food.) This is serious chemistry y'all, treat it as such. Do not get casual or sloppy about it!
RINSE IT VERY, VERY WELL. Soak it, rinse it again, several times. Seriously, you want this stuff OFF of it. DO NOT GET CASUAL OR SLOPPY ABOUT IT!!!
 
Tereza Okava
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Woohoo!! Glad to hear it worked out for you!!!

Another "victim" often used in the same way is papaya, generally underripe papaya or else one from a tree that either isn`t going to survive frost before fruit ripens or doesn`t have much taste (often female trees produce a lot of fruit that is better used green as a veg or like this), again cubed and cooked up in a sweet clove/cinnamon flavored broth.
The texture is so hard to describe, but strangely satisfying. We are on the pre-diabetes train here in my house so I don`t make much of this stuff anymore, but I think it would be interesting to think of savory applications for it. Some kind of pickle in a ramen or pho broth perhaps. There are also some Chinese veg pickles that have a strange texture and I suspect they are treated with lime, could be another use.

 
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My head is bubbling with thoughts on this. Keep an eye on this post, knowing me, I'll probably edit it a few times today as my brain bubbles up more ideas.

The idea of changing textures to drier is interesting, a lot of fruits would react interesting (like green papaya! not something I get in backwoods Missouri) but I think it's possible my next victim will be spaghetti squash, that I have cooked enough to fiber it out, to make noodles for soup that have a better texture, as that's what I think needs changing on them. Thinking about the difference between cheap ramen noodles and the good ones, that have a firmer texture, if I could make spaghetti squash change from the 'cheap" texture to the "good" ones, it would be cool.

I'm looking up how they make tofu, I am not a soy fan, and have made it from other beans, wondering if I could get better results with alum.

On that same thought, I do a variant of wheat meat that I put beans into also, and cook and spice it into interesting forms, wonder what liming would do to the texture of some of that, if done at the correct time (AFTER it's totally cooked, and can handle getting the lime washed off of it!)

The oriental pickled veggies being treated with an alkali makes sense, I have wondered how some of those textures happen! Pickled radish is one of my favorites and I can never get it to work right, might be what I'm missing.

A silly thought here: We play a game in the Meaningless drivel section called "What Is This?" where we post pictures to identify objects. It's a SHAME we can't post foods, and play the same game here! That alum treated squash, I'd have never guessed, it tasted like carrot core to me. And the stuff from my watermelon rind abuse thread would have been awesome to play with. Wish we could post food!! :D

Also looked up Nixtamalization again, and looked at where they got their lime water or potash from. Lime water by burning and grinding shells, or by putting limestone rocks into the cooking foods (my property is solid limestone underneath! This whole area is limestone karst,) potash by soaking wood ashes and condensing down the result. Both of those are very much able to come down to home scale production, instead of buying pickling lime, less dangerous, less toxic. I would also wonder, you can use grape leaves to make pickles crisp, wonder if you burn them, and their vines, and make potash out of them, what results you'd get.

 
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wow, a lot to think about in one post!!!

I think the attitude about lime is a bit different up there, perhaps similar to pickling/canning (which is also a bit maybe kinda panicked). Most people have lime laying around the house, since there is always a construction job here or there. Lime wash on walls, lime for gardening, it`s not a big deal. (Not to say I discount your warnings. I first "met" lime when I was working on horse farms, and we sprinkled powdered lime on the "yucky patches" in the stalls where the urine soaked down into the concrete. I always have open cuts on my hands and yeeha, man did that smart. Back in the good old days of no gloves and letting teenagers handle racehorses...). I use lime and also gypsum in my kitchen pretty often, making tofu with gypsum and making masa harina with the lime. Like you say, you rinse it out really well, no biggie.

As for making tofu with other beans. Back in the day I remember reading about a vegan friend making chickpea and pea tofu. i think it is actually more of a gel, not a true tofu, but it`s worth researching.
Anyhoo, I was just working on this recently, there are essentially 4 coagulants that are standard- magnesium sulfate (epsom salts), magnesium chloride (nigari), calcium sulfate (gypsum), and now something new, glucono delta lactone (GDL, which will probably only arrive here in Brazil way after my tofu experiment days are over). Yet some people talk about using acids like lemon juice and other components, so it`s totally worth experimenting

Finally, limed spaghetti squash sounds brilliant. If I get a good harvest this year, I will try it.

And not to let a good idea get away- you mention ramen noodles. For those of us who live in places where good ramen noodles have to be handmade, there is a nice trick to get something just as good out of crappy spaghetti. I can vouch for it- this is standard practice in my house. https://www.seriouseats.com/2014/10/baking-soda-ramen-noodle-spaghetti-hack.html
 
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Since I randomly stumbled on this post and saw the problems with lime: A Dish with water and a bit of vinegar to wash your hands after using the lime (or every few minutes) helps a lot. The acid neutralizes the lime on the skin.
 
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Tereza Okava wrote:wow, a lot to think about in one post!!!

Welcome to my head It overflows!

As for making tofu with other beans. Back in the day I remember reading about a vegan friend making chickpea and pea tofu. i think it is actually more of a gel, not a true tofu, but it`s worth researching.

I do it fairly often, just never comes out the exact way I want, I'm interested in seeing what can be done with alum...

Anyhoo, I was just working on this recently, there are essentially 4 coagulants that are standard- magnesium sulfate (epsom salts), magnesium chloride (nigari), calcium sulfate (gypsum), and now something new, glucono delta lactone (GDL, which will probably only arrive here in Brazil way after my tofu experiment days are over). Yet some people talk about using acids like lemon juice and other components, so it`s totally worth experimenting

I also saw using alkaline the same way as acid. That's what I'm thinking on. I'm not going for the idea of turning out something that looks like it came from the store, I am going for "how to make something I like" and that is a totally different question. To me the concept "tofu" means "beans can be made to do things that don't look like beans"

And not to let a good idea get away- you mention ramen noodles. For those of us who live in places where good ramen noodles have to be handmade, there is a nice trick to get something just as good out of crappy spaghetti. I can vouch for it- this is standard practice in my house. https://www.seriouseats.com/2014/10/baking-soda-ramen-noodle-spaghetti-hack.html

baking soda is an alkaline too. That's part of why I thought of playing with spaghetti squash. I have 2 of them sitting here, won't have time to play with them for a while, will tell you in a week or so how they do!
 
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I cannot WAIT to see what you come up with !!!
 
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Tereza Okava wrote:I cannot WAIT to see what you come up with !!!


Well, you'll HAVE to!  
I think this has interesting creative abuse potential.
 
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This just got weirder! I had an eggplant. Eggplant always goes mushy when cooked, so into the pickling lime it went! I'd have to say that when I do it next time (and I will!!) it will be in not as strong lime and less time. Who would have thought an eggplant could be too solidly firm even after baking?!

I cut the eggplant into chunks about 3/4 of an inch x 3/4  x 1.5, put it in a crock with lime, let it soak for 6 hours or so, then took it out, rinsed it REALLY well, soaked it in vinegar water, rinsed it again, then marinated it. The marinate was a variation on one of my standards: olive oil, red cooking wine, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce and spices. Since it was going into something kind of lasagna-ish, the spices I used were garlic, Italian herb mix, sage, red chile, and anise. Marinated it for a couple hours, stirring every so often, and that was WEIRD, when you stir eggplant chunk, they break. Not these. I wasn't being nice to them at all, still no breakage. I had to use a knife to cut down a few of them smaller, have to use a knife on raw eggplant because you can't break it? WEIRD!

Used the marinated eggplant in a casserole, layers of tomato sauce, noodles, eggplant, greens and allium mix. Baked it till it looked done. I will admit I had a backup meal planned for dinner if this was just flat inedible, I'm smart that way :D  The texture was odd, took a bit to get used to, but it grew on us, and we  both got seconds! A win!! That is one of the weirdest things I have ever done with an eggplant.

I think this has a lot of potential for grilling. I'm vegetarian, and have grilled eggplant over a fire before, it always makes a sticky tasty mess. Soaking the slices in lime water before marinating and grilling it would, I think, make it come out perfect.

So 10 out of 10 for concept, 8 out of 10 for execution. I pronounce that a winner, and will be doing it more.
Weird!!
 
Pearl Sutton
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I was asked in message how I make chai over a fire, if anyone is interested, I wrote it up here: Chai over a fire
 
Jay Angler
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Pearl Sutton wrote:

Since it was going into something kind of lasagna-ish,

Sooo.... if you sliced the Eggplant really thin before soaking it, could you cook and use the slices as a replacement for the lasagna noodles? I find lasagna noodle expensive to buy for what they are, and a nuisance to work with. But to me Lasagna *needs* to have the feel of layers, so when I read you description my brain immediately thought sauce, layer of sliced eggplant, sauce, layer of cheese, sauce more eggplant. That would work if I needed to feed my wheat-intolerant friend also.
 
Pearl Sutton
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Jay Angler wrote:if you sliced the Eggplant really thin before soaking it, could you cook and use the slices as a replacement for the lasagna noodles? .... That would work if I needed to feed my wheat-intolerant friend also.


Yup. Watch closely how long you soak it for, the chunks got too firm, would be easy for slices to get too firm too. Would definitely work! I added noodles to it all just because I'm trying to use up a batch of them (I won't buy that type again.) I do recommend marinating them before use, in something, I don't have words for what I'm thinking here, something like it loses some of the good parts of the eggplant, and marnate replaces that...? That's not correct. But try it both ways, I expect you'll like the marinated better. Just hard to put my finger on why exactly.
 
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Jay Angler wrote:I find lasagna noodle expensive to buy for what they are, and a nuisance to work with. But to me Lasagna *needs* to have the feel of layers...



This wouldn't help the gluten intolerant, but if you've been boiling the lasagna noodles and then draining and cooling them, there are two other ways to do it. One is, to use the commercial lasagna noodles, but you layer them in dry, don't boil them ahead of time. Make the sauce and fillings a little runny since the dry noodles will some moisture while they cook. It comes out great and I find much easier than cooking them first. But it's still expensive. The other thing is that I learned here in India that it really takes two minutes flat to mix up some dough and another few to roll it out (Many people I know make chapattis daily without batting an eyelid). That way you can use whole wheat flour or whatever you like, and the rolled out dough is flexible and easy to shape to the size of the pan. And it's much cheaper than commercial lasagna noodles, and probably takes no longer than boiling noodles.
 
Tereza Okava
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very interesting!!

I know I've had some sort of Japanese pickled eggplant that was "crunchy". I thought it might have been pickled in miso but that wouldn't make crunch. But liming it prior to pickling would. hmmm....
 
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Slightly off topic, i wanted to share a delicious green tomato dish i made this weekend. I had a couple pounds of slowly ripening green paste tomatoes that i picked a month plus ago before our first freeze. I sauteed those in olive oil  with a few tiny shriveled jalapenos picked at the same point and added a chopped up wedge of preserved lemon with some of the brine. I started the preserves lemon a month or so ago: almost-quartered  lemons  covered with salt, squashed in a jar and left on the counter to ferment. The combination was wonderful and rich with umami.
 
Pearl Sutton
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Judielaine Bush: OOOH! That sounds good! (I take notes!!)
I haven't done any limes or lemons in ages, I love them...

Something I came up with for green tomatoes that my mom loves is making a batter that's cornmeal based (like a hush puppy) add chopped green tomatoes and chopped onions to it, add an egg and a bit more milk, and run it through the waffle iron. Fried green tomato hush puppy waffles!
 
Jay Angler
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OK Ladies! A little more input here, please - hubby showed up with 2 bags (I'd asked for 1 organic lemon as I needed the zest for a recipe) of lemons. So list a few things you would use those "fermented" lemons for, and slightly more info as to what you mean by "almost-quartered  lemons  covered with salt". Please, thank you and those tacos I was going to send to Gir Bot, but this is a higher priority.
 
Tereza Okava
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I have made this recipe for fermented limes with other kinds of sour citrus. It makes a delightful cocktail as well as medicine when it's that nasty-throat time of year.
http://www.thehongkongcookery.com/2018/08/chinese-preserved-limes.html
 
Pearl Sutton
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Tereza: That one looks good!
I do Indian style, with my usual "I don't need no recipe!" type variations.
Indian-Style Pickled Limes
Indian Lime Pickle
recipe at the bottom of a long bit about gut microbes and fermented foods

What they all have in common is cut up lemons or limes, more salt than you'd expect, spices, and some have vinegar and oil added. So I (without measuring) slice up the citrus, mix all my dry stuff together, toss the fruit in the salty spices, and stuff them in a jar. Shake every few days, burp it if it needs it, and OH MY tasty stuff happens. Look at the recipes I threw, what spices do you have on hand that sound tasty? Anything in the brown hot to sweet range works well. There is no set in stone spice mix, it's like dill pickles, you see them a lot, but there are many other spice mixes you can do in pickled cucumbers, any spice that is in the brown (not herbs, they never seem to work right, not sure why, the acid of the fruit messes with them, probably) sweet to hot works well. I have done cinnamon/clove/allspice/red chile mixes that were awesome, classic Indian turmeric/cumin/ginger/cayenne mixes, more American garlic/black pepper/cumin and my own head style caraway/cumin/ginger/red chile/garlic that is excellent.

Because this style is from India, hot spices are traditional, they aren't required, I just like them. Skip the hot if you want.

At it's basic form, just salting the citrus down and fermenting it works too. But the spices add variation and wonderfulness. I do sauerkraut the same way, at it's basic form it's just cabbage and salt, but you can crank it up with anything, and end up with kim chee :) Or any of the weir unnamed things I end up with.  

:D

 
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I read a number of blog posts about making preserved lemons and then followed in my own way. This site - https://www.thespruceeats.com/how-to-make-moroccan-preserved-lemons-2394973 - is close to my route. I did not add spices because one site advised how versatile  the unspiced lemons are.
 
Pearl Sutton
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Judielaine Bush wrote:I read a number of blog posts about making preserved lemons and then followed in my own way. This site - https://www.thespruceeats.com/how-to-make-moroccan-preserved-lemons-2394973 - is close to my route. I did not add spices because one site advised how versatile  the unspiced lemons are.


Nice!! I'll have to try that way. I've always spiced mine up, because I am a spicy type.
 
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