When it comes to making pickles, there are a ton of different methods and variations. It’s easy to get lost on a deep, briny dive when talking about pickling methods, so we’re just going to focus on our favorite ways to do it in the shop!
We focus on lacto-fermentation for our house pickles. The cucumbers are seasoned and brined for two weeks before they are ready, yielding a result traditionally referred to as a “half sour”. If you were so inclined, you could let your produce brine a lot longer (up to a year!), yielding a wide variety of flavors and textures, but we like two weeks on the cucumbers because it gives our pickles just a little crunch!
A lot of pickles for our specials and seasonal sides are made using the lacto-fermentation method. It makes for a nice funkiness, without too much acidity.
Sometimes, though, it makes sense to switch things up with the “quick pickle” method, another shop favorite! As the name implies, the process is faster: produce is seasoned and covered in a vinegar brine for just a few days, then it's ready to go! Pickled onions and eggs are both made using this process.
At Brass Tacks, we think pickling is important. It’s a great way to utilize our bounty of fresh produce during the less fruitful winter months. Preservation is a huge part of what we do, and it’s a great way to keep exciting, delicious seasonal ingredients on your plate year-round!
We're proud to grow a lot of our own produce. There's little more satisfying than growing something yourself, harvesting it, then serving it to your great community!
This is fresh horseradish root from our garden. We've trimmed back the tops to promote root growth, making for a big and tasty horseradish! We wait until after the first strong frost to harvest, which helps to intensify the flavor. Then, we'll use the top half of the root for our sauce, and leave the rest in the ground so we can do it all over again next year!
To prepare the horseradish for our sauce, we peel it, chop it, and then blend it with a little water and vinegar. Once that's ready, we mix it with our garlic aioli and a little house Dijon.
We're very proud of all of our housemade sauces, but working with our homegrown horseradish gives us a special kick. We hope you'll say the same!