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I made cucumber pickles with a variety of herb options. I am/was attempting a wild yeast, non-vinegar pickle (it worked last year...) This year though, there are varying degrees of a bluish scum on the top and cloudy liquids. The question is where is the line of 'skunked' and should be ditched versus skimmable and savable.

Out of 6 jars, two are clear, two murky, and two substantially 'icky' - interestingly (or importantly?) the breakdown was by herb additive. All grown in my garden. The clear was tarragon/garlic, the murky was thyme/pepper/garlic (light), and the icky was sage/rosemary/garlic/red pepper.

asked by KayBee over 4 years ago
3 answers 849 views
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Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

added over 4 years ago

I'd only eat the clear one -- better-safe-than-sorry approach.

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added over 4 years ago

i had the same problems with my naturally fermented pickles...really disappointing. Don't think i'll be trying it again.

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added over 4 years ago

I've read that both Dill and Garlic have natural antibiotic properties -- that may be helping keep some of the simpler ones clear (if it's a proportion thing).