DIY





Fermentation Lids and Jar Airlock Systems: Do They Help?


| 5/9/2016 11:09:00 AM



Depending on your Internet prowess, your social media connections and your inbox, you may have noticed the last few years have brought about a number of new products for fermentation — more specifically, for fermenting in a mason jar.

All you need for lacto-fermentation is salt, a vessel, and some time. It is a pretty simple, ancient technique for processing and preserving our food — after all, humans came up with clay pots some time ago. For tens of thousands of years those clay pots served us well with very little improvement or innovation.

At some point, a potter or a fermenter figured out a water seal crock. This is a ceramic crock with a moat in the rim that holds a bit of water and the lid. This creates a one-way door for the carbon dioxide (created by the fermentation process) — it can leave but air cannot come back in. This helps to produce the anaerobic environment necessary for successful fermentation. 

It is crucial that the vegetables are kept submerged in the brine, but for some the question is should the whole system be anaerobic? It doesn’t have to be — think of regular crocks (not the fancy ones with the water trough), Korean Onggi pots and all the vessels that have an open top with just a weight and a towel.

However, many people prefer not to deal with the yeasts and molds that can take up residence on that exposed top layer of the brine. This can be diminished with the use of a system that allows the carbon dioxide gas, which is created as the bacteria break down the sugars and starches, to escape the fermentation vessel without letting new air into the environment.



Fermenting in a Mason Jar

Fermenting in a big crock can be daunting and unwieldy so most people now-a-days choose to ferment in a mason jar. Fermenting in a jar is great for a number of reasons beyond the approachable size.

NoelWeigel
3/27/2018 7:28:30 AM

might be fine for sourdough on the counter. keeps bugs out


return_treker
9/19/2017 11:30:28 PM

Have tried the Masonlock lids? I found some on Amazon and they work excellent!


return_treker
9/19/2017 11:30:19 PM

Have tried the Masonlock lids? I found some on Amazon and they work excellent!




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