This may be a bit OT but I think I'll get the best answers on this board. Can anyone give me some starters tips on the best way to ferment mustard greens?
Are you talking about Chinese style preserved mustard? I googled "Ã¡ZÃuÃÃ¡Â²Ã" and found a lot of recipes. I tried to grow Chinese mustard Bau Sin but was not successful. On a similar note, instead of using pickling melon I used Armenian cucumber to make Ã¡uÂ¹ÃChinese pickles and the final product is fantastic. It's crunchy and flavorful.
I found a recipe posted by a Chinese woman. It isn't quite what I had in mind but is sounds very tasty.
Pickled Mustard Greens
Pickled Mustard Greens, or Swan Tsai, are a traditional Chinese favorite. TheyÂre the sour chopped veggies you get in the Beef Noodle Soup (if you get an authentic one) or in Taiwanese dishes like Minced Pork Rice or Pork Chop Rice. Oh, I also love when they are sauteed with squid.
So I asked my mom how to make Swan Tsai, and was shocked to learn how easy it was:
1. Get a large clean jar (with lid). Clean the mustard greens very thoroughly by rinsing with water and rubbing the dirt off with your fingers.
2. Press a few leaves into the jar, sprinkle with table salt, press another couple of leaves, sprinkle with table salt. Repeat until you reach the top, making sure to pack in tightly. Fill the jar with water and top with about a tablespoon of white vinegar. This is just to prevent mold. Cover tightly.
3. Bring it over to the sink and turn it upside down 2 or 3 times.
4. Now just let it sit. In warm weather, it will only take a few days. In the winter, it will take up to 9 days. It all depends on your room temperature.
5.You have to check to see when itÂs done. After a few days, the bright green will turn to yellow and brown. If you look closely, you can still see some bright green. Wait until all of it turns brown. Now you can taste it by using a clean chopstick. Every time you open the jar, top with a spoon of vinegar before closing it. You can also add water if the water level has dropped. If the mustard greens donÂt taste like they are pickling by day 6, you probably didnÂt use enough salt. Add more and turn the jar upside down a few times.
6. When itÂs done (to your taste), remove the leaves from the water and store in tupperware, in the fridge.
*Note: Water can be re-used to pickle more mustard greens. Just pack in the leaves and sprinkle a little more salt and top with vinegar again.
I LOVE Swan Tsai, sour and salty, crunchy and crispy, ok, they are an ugly color, but itÂs so so good! The anticipation while itÂs pickling is what kills me so start making more before you finish your stash.
Hoodat, here's a slightly different way (I checked with a mustard pickler):
Sprinkle the mustard leaves with salt then squeeze and twist the leaves.
Rinse off salt and green juice with cold water.
Pack leaves into a 1 gallon glass jar.
Fill jar with water and sprinkle a tablespoon of rice on top the water and mustard leaves.
Add a few pinches of salt and close jar.
After fermentation begins, open jar and push the leaves down into the liquid. Reclose. Repeat every few days.
You will know whether you have a good batch by the smell. Good smell (for those who like pickled mustard) -- it worked. Bad smell -- it didn't work.
Now I gotta tell you that I don't like pickled mustard. In fact, I go real easy on anything that's pickled. But, I did try to find out the process from someone who enjoys this sort of thing.
Thanks Steve. That's more like I expected. I guess I can try both ways. The first way may be better for American tastes but your way sounds more authentic.