- What is the Pickl-It Dunk'R?
- What is the Pickl-It Airlock?
- Is there lead in the Pickl-It wire-bail or glass container?
- What are the Pickl-It parts?
- What is the capacity of each Pickl-It?
- What are the dimensions of each Pickl-It?
- Why are there so many Pickl-It sizes?
- Why does the airlock have three parts?
- What is a Pickl-It Plug'R?
- Safety & Handling Instructions
- Dual Media KDF Shower Filter Technical Information
- What is the mini-airlock?
- Phone and EMail Orders
- Pickl-It Sizes
- What are the sizes and capacities of the Pickl-It?
- Are Dunk'Rs included with the Pickl-It?
- Why is my brine cloudy?
- How difficult is it to make lacto-fermented foods?
- Is there a maximum limit when filling the Pickl-It?
- How do I install the airlock into the Pickl-It lid?
- What is meant by "firmly packed" food?
- How do carbon dioxide (CO2) and oxygen (O) escape the airlock?
- How do I clean the airlock?
- Why doesn't the Dunk'R completely cover the top of the fermenting food?
- Do I have to use salt?
- How do I install the lid on the Pickl-It?
- How do I detach and re-attach the wire-bails from the Pickl-It?
- My wire-bails have stretched out. Can they be tightened?
- There's food poking above the brine! Help?
- You don't use distilled vinegar when making your pickles? Why?
- There's brine in my airlock! What happened?
- Can I store fermented foods in a vacuum-sealed glass jar?
- Why can't I use regular, everyday table salt?
- Is there a minimum level when filling the Pickl-It?
- Do I sterilize the Pickl-It containers?
- How much water do I put into the airlock?
- How many vegetables does my Pickl-It hold?
- My Pickl-It just arrived! How do I set it up?
- Why should I cover my Pickl-It container during fermentation?
- What size should I slice cabbage, used for making sauerkraut?
- My sauerkraut didn't make enough brine. What do I do?
- My sauerkraut brine disappeared during storage. What should I do?
- How do I slice thin cabbage using a mandolin?
- How do I keep grated and sliced vegetables under the brine?
- I've made fermented kraut and cukes, but I'd like to do more. What else is there?
- Do I need special equipment for lacto-fermentation?
- Pickl-It Instruction Brochure
- How is the Dunk'R used to remove oxygen from foods?
- How did the brine get into the airlock?
- How does carbon dioxide (CO2) get into the fermented food?
- How do I know when the initial fermentation is complete?
- Why do I need to keep my fermenting foods in the dark?
- I'm afraid of bacteria. Why do we need them for fermenting?
- Does "lacto-fermented" mean that dairy is used?
- What is lacto-fermentation?
- What is the white sediment on my pickles and on the bottom of the jar?
- How do I know if my cucumber pickles are spoiled?
- What is kimchi?
- What is acetic acid?
- What is carbon dioxide?
- What are the homofermentative lactobacilli? (And why should I care?)
- What are Lactic Acid Bacteria (LAB)?
- What is anaerobic fermentation?
- What is aerobic fermentation?
- What is lactic acid?
- How quickly should I ferment my harvest?
- Can I use Bragg's "raw" vinegar in my brine?
- What is fermentation?
- Is fermented food safe?
- What are the nutritional requirements of lactic-acid bacteria?
- Why is my cow-milk kefir fishy tasting?
- Which Vegetables Are Best Fermented?
- White foam on my pickles? Help!
- What causes spoilage?
- If I open the Pickl-It, to remove foam or yeast, won't that ruin the batch?
- Why did the garlic cloves in my pickles turn green or bluish-green?
- What is the step-by-step process of microbial lacto-fermentation?
- Don't white oak and grape leaves have high levels of tannins?
- Do ferments need to be refrigerated?
- There's frothy foam on my beet juice kvass. Is it spoiled?
- What resources on Sauerkraut are available on the Pickl-It site?
The airlock is an important component of the Pickl-It system, creating a low-oxygen, or, anaerobic environment, in which lactic-acid bacteria thrive and remain healthy! Oxygen is NOT desirable, working against creating healthy fermented-foods.Read more...
There is no lead in the Pickl-It wire-bail metal closure OR its glass container, both manufactured by Bormioli Rocco, in business since 1825.Read more...
Pickl-It Parts – Inclusion May Vary According to Individual SystemRead more...
Dimensions Without Airlock:
¾ liter: 5¼” height x 4¼” wide
1 liter: 6¼” height x 4¼” wide
1½ liter: 8¾” height x 4¼” wide
3 liter: 9 1/2” height x 5 1/2” wide
4 liter: 11” height x 6” diameter
5 liter: 11.5” height x 6.5” diameter
Note: The 3L and smaller jars are ‘square’ in shape and the the 4 and 5 Liter are round.
The Pickl-It has been designed to meet a wide-range of needs. The 3-liter Pickl-It is ideal for making 3-lbs of pickles, while the 3/4-liter Pickl-It is perfect for small batches of jams, jalapeno pepper sauce, salsa or even just a few servings of kefir.Read more...
We’ve loaded this Pickl-It website with helpful FAQs, recipes, tips and ideas, all with the goal of making lacto-fermenting as easy and tasty as possible! When you’re ready to use your Pickl-It, be sure to check out the “Getting Started” section, located in the upper-right column. And here are a few other helpful pointers….Read more...
Our Dual Media KDF Shower Filter works on a similar principle to a Catalytic Converter in an automobile. In shower filtration free-chlorine is converted into a harmless chloride. The scientific name for this chemical reaction is known as “Reduction-Oxidation”, commonly referred to as Redox.Read more...
Mini-Airlocks for Refrigerated Storage!(What is an airlock?)
- 50% smaller than our full-size airlock
- Two-part construction
- Included with all 3/4-Liter, 1-Liter, Condiment Duo, and Condiment Trio
- Ideal for refrigerator-storage of foods that require long-term “curing” and are active producers of carbon dioxide, such as kraut, pickled-cukes, kimchi, and pepper mashes
- Fits all Pickl-It lids
- Not intended for use on 3-Liter, 4-Liter, or 5-Liter larger for initial fermentation; may be used for secondary-fermentation on these sizes, or long-term storage
We’ve designed the Pickl-It so there’s a perfect size to fit your need – from single to triple batches of sourdough batters, 1 to 4 pounds of peppers, kraut, or pickles – Pickl-It is designed to fit the container size to the amount of food.Read more...
We've removed the Dunk'R from all Pickl-It Single and Bundle selections, offering individual or multi-pack Dunk'R. Typically, customers use two Pickl-It Dunk'R in the Pickl-It 2-liter, and three Dunk'R in the Pickl-It 3-liter, 4-liter and 5-liter.Read more...
Creating nutrient-dense old-fashioned half or full-sour pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi, is as fun and easy as 1-2-3:Read more...
The Pickl-It has a “shoulder” – the curved corners about 1-inch below the “neck”. In the beginning, until you get a sense for how much each vegetable, grain or dairy expands during fermenting, use the shoulder as a fill-guide.Read more...
Use a gentle, clockwise or counterclockwise when inserting the airlock into the grommet. It helps to hold the grommet in place on the underside of the lid, while gently twisting the airlock from the top downward.Read more...
The goal of packing or tamping food into the Pickl-It fermenting chamber, is to release oxygen trapped in pockets, an important step in an anaerobic fermentation process,. This “packing” is especially important for finer cuts of vegetables such as shredded or grated carrots, beets, or cabbage which more develop air-pockets.Read more...
The airlock’s snap-on plastic cover has 8 small air holes drilled around its perimeter, through which O and CO2 escape.Read more...
If the Dunk’R completed covered the brine, oxygen and excess carbon dioxide, along with other gases created during fermentation, would become trapped, ruining the flavor, texture and nutritional value of the food….Read more...
- Salt is a critical ingredient which helps to prevent undesirable bacteria from growing, encouraging a fermenting environment that supports the increase of the desirable bacteria that produces lactic acid.
- An in-depth FAQ article detailing the Four Stages of Lacto-Fermentation, provides more information on the role of salt.
To keep your cover and container bail-wire looking shiny and new, we recommend you remove the two-part wire-bail system from the Pickl-It, and do not place them in the dishwasher. They will become discolored and lose their shine if exposed to harsh dishwasher detergents.Read more...
Removing the wire-bails from your lid and Pickl-It container, which preserves their shine – easily damaged by harsh dishwasher or dish soap – may cause them to become stretched out, fitting a bit too loosely. They’re easy to tighten!Read more...
Using distilled vinegar has absolutely nothing in common with lacto-fermented, vibrant, rich-in-microbes, living foods! Weston A. Price Foundation recommends that distilled products – vinegar or alcohol – should be shunned, and are NOT appropriate in a healthy diet.Read more...
Brine that is drawn into the airlock happens for three reasons:
- Foods were not compacted, eliminating air pockets
- Too much food was packed into the Pickl-It, exceeding the capacity of the fermenting chamber
- Food + brine exceeded the maximum fill
While food vacuum jar sealers are a great tool for food storage and preserving, we don’t recommend their use when refrigerating fermented foods.Read more...
Yes! You should try to not have more than 50% airspace in the Pickl-It…..Read more...
By placing a towel around the Pickl-It container, the UV light is blocked from entering through the clear glass. UV light kills lactic-acid bacteria which is essential to the fermentation process.Read more...
Cabbage sliced into “threads” – fine, wispy, almost-translucent – is the best way to achieve traditional sauerkraut flavor and texture. We usually create “threads” from 3-4 pound cabbage which have been cut into quarters, with the heart removed, slicing them on a mandolin with an angled blade.Read more...
Simply make a 2/12 percent brine = 1 1/2 T unrefined high-quality sea salt per quart of water.Read more...
Sometimes, brine hides in the kraut. With a wooden dowel, end of a French rolling pin or wooden pestle, gently press the kraut, releasing the brine.Read more...
Whether your mandolin’s straight-slicing blade is horizontal or angled, you can achieve the perfect thread cut when you drag the edge of the cabbage wedge through the mandolin, instead of the straight, flat face of a half or quartered wedge.Read more...
An easy solution, in keeping “pokies” under the brine, is to criss-cross thin slices of carrots, turnips, celery, or any number of other vegetables, across the top of the vegetables. Remember, place the Dunk’R back on top, to weigh everything down.Read more...
Sauerkraut and cucumber pickles are lacto-fermented foods my grandmother always had on hand, and now I do, too! Any vegetable can be cured, brined, cultured, or lacto-fermented (same process, just different names!). Cookbook authors and food researchers, Sandor Katz, “Wild Fermentation”, and Sally Fallon in “Nourishing Traditions”, provide encouragement, as well as wonderful ideas on how to “pickle” a wide-range of vegetables, including:Read more...
With every Pickl-It order, you should receive a handy 4-page instructional booklet which has handy tips and recipes, handy to have around the kitchen for those “hands-on” fermenting moments when you might need a little reminder, but don’t want to run to the computer.
Just in case you misplace yours? Here’s the master files, downloads, ready-to-print.
Sized for one 8 1/2 × 11, simply follow your printer’s instructions for two-sided printing.
Reducing oxygen is a very important step towards a successful lacto-fermentation, which is an anaerobic process. The Pickl-It Dunk’R can help!Read more...
Many vegetables expand, and when it expands, the only direction to move is up – toward the airlock. If it comes in contact with the bottom of the airlock, the brine will be suctioned up and out the airlock which is called “overflow”.
If this occurs, simply open the Pickl-It, removing a few tablespoons (or more) of food. You will also need to rinse out the airlock. We’ve found the easiest way to do that is…Read more...
By the conversion of sugars into alcohol and carbon dioxide which gives it the “fizz.” Follow the “Read more…” link for additional details.Read more...
Gently tap the side of the Pickl-It or pick it up and gently set it down. If you see bubbles rising through the brine, there is still active fermentation. If you do not see bubbles, it means your initial fermentation is over. Depending on room temperature, this can take anywhere from 3 to 10-days. Ideal room temperature is between 68 and 72-degrees Fahrenheit.Read more...
Because light destroys lactic acid bacteria. Lactic acid bacteria are crucial to a good, healthy fermentation, so please guard your fermented foods, keeping them out of strong light.
If you don’t have an out-of-the-way corner on your kitchen countertop…Read more...
Bacteria, part of a microscope group called “microbes”, are primarily our friends, with only 8% causing harm according to a superb article, The Matrix – Life’s Supporting SystemsRead more...
“Lacto”, used in “lacto-fermentation” and all of its derivations, refers to lactic-acid bacteria, familiar to most people as “lactobacillus”. “Lacto” is simply the shortened name of “lactobacillus”, the same way that we shorten “Samual” to “Sam”, or “Susan” to “Sue”.Read more...
White sediment can either come from salt which contain anti-caking additives, or from naturally-occurring yeast which forms during the fermentation process. Neither one is harmful, although many people are trying to remove chemical additives from diet, and opt to use only salt that contains no anti-caking agents.
For more problem-solving information about pickles: Oregon EDU
Kimchi is a side-dish, condiment, and even part of main-entrees, a lacto-fermented Korean delicacy that defies being just one thing. Kimchi is made from a wide-variety of vegetables, often cabbage, daikon radish, with over 200-variations. Multiply that times how many people have developed their own recipes, and kimchi even defies description!Read more...
Homofermentative lactobacilli occur in the 3rd stage of lacto-fermentation, producing the all-important lactic acid which is crucial, preserving lacto-fermented foods, and keeping them safe. Read more about homofermentative lactobacilli in the Microbial Step-by-Step article.Read more...
Talking about Lactic Acid Bacteria (LAB) is as exciting to us as what the retooling of the Hubble telescope must be to those intrigued by the discoveries of new space frontiers! It’s new frontiers, amazing science, and the quest for life all rolled up in one and we don’t even have to leave Earth!Read more...
The short answer is: “no”.
Lactic acid is the dominant acid created by lactic-acid bacteria, during fermentation. Although acetic acid (vinegar) is also created, the proper ratio of lactic:acetic acids needs to be in a 4:1 ratio.Read more...
One of our customers mentioned they view their lacto-fermented foods as “pets”. They’re not far from wrong! Lactic-acid bacteria – foundational to all fermentation processes – have complex nutritional needs and thrive on starches, amino acids, nucleotide bases, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and carbohydrates from vegetables, grains and dairy.Read more...
All vegetables and many fruits are great candidates for becoming fermented goodies! The lactic acid bacteria, which are stored on the exterior, as well in the cell walls of the fruit or vegetable, are the power behind fruits and vegetables, turning them into a wide variety of naturally-nutritious foods and beverages, including:
- sauces (jalapeno, ketchup)
- liquors, juices and fruit soda
- jams and chutney
- sauerkraut, kimchi, half-sour pickles, and a wide variety of other vegetable “pickle”
Vegetable pickles are a family favorite….Read more...
During cucumber fermentation, you will (or should) develop foam. It is a sign that you have an active, healthy, vibrant batch of pickles in the works. Congratulations!
The foam should begin to form on the 2nd day of your initial 3 to 5-day fermenting…Read more...
There are a variety of reasons including fruits or vegetables that were:
- had “bad” spots, already beginning to decay
- blossom ends (pickling cukes – especially important!) weren’t removed
- improperly stored
- stored too long
- immature – picked too early so not enough sugar/starch development
During the first week of fermentation, if you open the Pickl-It to scoop away foam – especially during fermenting of cucumbers – your pickles will not be ruined.Read more...
Blue or purple pigments are caused by all amino acids (proteins) (except for cysteine, proline and 4-hydroxy-proline) in crushed, sliced, or fermented garlic.Read more...
The “Handbook of Fermented Functional Foods”, p. 349, illustrates steps of lacto-fermentation, using sauerkraut as an example, describing the process of lacto-fermentation as:
- Spontaneous, complex microbiological process
- Has a strict sequence of different microorganisms
- Changing environmental conditions within the fermenting substrate (brine)
The addition of grape, white oak, sour cherry or horseradish leaves to the cucumber pickling brine, is a traditional method going back hundreds of years.Read more...
Since most people no longer have an 1800s style root cellar, cave, or a fermentation burial chamber in their backyard (popular in Korean for making kimchi), all of which never go above 50ºF or below 32ºF, we suggest lacto-fermented food should be stored in a refrigerator.Read more...
The sign of “frothy foam” sitting on top your beet juice kvass should not be taken as a sign-of-doom, but instead, a sign-of-success!Read more...
We have collected our most popular Sauerkraut articles and created a directory of links for your convenience.Read more...
Did you know...
Sunki – a non-salted and fermented vegetable from the leaves of “Otaki-turnip” in Kiso district – is eaten with rice and in miso soup. The Otaki-turnip is boiled, inoculated with “Zumi” (a wild small apple) dried Sunki from the previous year and allowed to ferment for one to two months. Micro-organisms involved include Lactobacillus plantarum, L. Brevis, Bacillus coagulans and Pediococcus pentosaceus (Makayama,1957)
I’ve tried just about everything from bowls to canning jars with screw-on lids. It either turned moldy, or ran all over the counter, down my cabinets, on my floor. What a mess! Pickl-It makes it so simple, that I just wanted to thank you.