crock pickles... now what?
I have a crock of pickles I've been fermenting for almost 5 weeks. I've snitched a few out along the way to monitor the progress. They taste good, maybe a little saltier than I'd like, but have nice texture and smell yummy as well.
My questions: 1.Do I have to process these? My understanding is that the health benefits of a fermented food will be wasted if I do. Could I just refrigerate them now? 2.Should I add new brine to bring the level of liquid back up and take the weight out (they're still submerged but it is getting low) 3.If do refrigerate could I just cover the crock with the lid or should they be transfered into sterlized jars? 4. Is there any way I can make them less salty? I probably have about 3 quarts total.
Thanks in advance for any help.