Fermentation failure

Kimchi, pickles, sauerkraut, and more!

Moderator: Christopher Weeks

Fermentation failure

Postby Dannijade on Sun Sep 10, 2017 3:40 am

Hi All,
I'm new to fermenting, and was given a lovely glazed crock to use for my endeavours.
My first batch was a HUGE failure, seriously I've never seen so much mould. I think I didn't have enough in the crock. Anyhow, fast forward to a few more super mouldy attempts later and I'm stumped.

I've washed the crock and weights with boiling water and vinegar. I've baked the weights, I've bought new weights, I've filled the crock right up, I've made my own brine to add. I think I've tried everything.
Then today i get the crock out again, and look inside and notice the glaze is cracked, and the exposed ceramic has this grey mouldy powder coming out of it. The crock has been stored completely dry with the lid off, I'm starting to think that that the ceramic is actually compromised and maybe it's not what I'm doing.

Has anyone else encountered similar problems?
I'd welcome your feedback. Thanks!
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Mar 13, 2016 8:07 pm

Re: Fermentation failure

Postby Christopher Weeks on Mon Sep 11, 2017 7:54 am

I haven't personally, but I'm 100% sure I've read about similar problems here over the years. The search tool is telling me that "mold crock" consists of too-common words.

Is there a single crack or is the entire surface crazed? If it's the former, and if it's low enough that you can keep it below the brine-level, you might try remediating the crock.

This is entirely speculative on my part, but what I'd try in your case is: Put it in the oven. Set the oven to the lowest possible temperature and soak the crock at 180 or 200 or whatever for an hour, and then start turning it up. Bring it up slowly to as hot as you can -- 500 or whatever. When it has completely cooled, I'd soak it in a 1/4 bleach solution. and let it soak for a few days -- you want the liquid to penetrate as deep as the brine does. Then rinse thoroughly with tap water and let stand in water overnight, and repeat the rinse-refill process a few times.

After that, I'd try fermenting something cheap -- plain cabbage maybe, to see what happens.

But what I don't know if how to keep it so that the problem doesn't reoccur. Keeping it filled with water might work, but seems like kind of a hassle.
Christopher Weeks
Nuka Ninja
Posts: 1763
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:59 pm
Location: Jordan, MN

Return to Vegetable Ferments

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest