Upping the (sea) salt and adding vinegar can add longevity to fermented veg – but the fizzing means the bacteria are doing their job
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I pickled some small home-grown cucumbers in spiced and sweetened vinegar, packed tightly into a lidded jar. The liquid leaked out of the jar, it had cloudy patches and it was fizzing. Are my pickles still OK?
Helen, Newent, Gloucestershire
What a, er, pickle. Whether or not these cucumbers should be discarded is hard to say without knowing exactly what went into Helen’s brine, says Rachel de Thample, author of The River Cottage Fermentation Handbook. What we do know, however, is that pickled cucumbers are tricky to get right, so she should cut herself some slack.