Jump to content


The 11th Annual Hot Pepper Awards - WINNERS ANNOUNCED!


Member Since 07 Mar 2016
Offline Last Active Jun 20 2018 10:59 PM

#1555707 already hardned peppers started drooping alot when they are out in the sunlight

Posted by austin87 on 25 May 2018 - 08:56 PM

My plants in the past have wilted under full sun. Even large, healthy plants that have been in the sun all season.

Im not a soil expert like the guys above. But if your plant bounces back in the evening it might be because its hot and humid.

Can you get shade cloth in Thailand? Shade cloth comes in different grades to block part of the sun. Ive seen everything from 30-70% shade cloth (here in the states the % number refers to the percentage of sun blocked, so a lower number lets in more light).

You might try shade cloth over the plants, which will block part of the suns intense rays but still let them get filtered light, and also reduce temperature.

#1533850 Stem burying technique for chilis to improve overall grow/harvest in the end...

Posted by austin87 on 02 March 2018 - 12:38 PM

Damn those are some monster plants.

#1525388 First Lacto

Posted by austin87 on 06 February 2018 - 03:33 PM

Started some jalapenos a month ago and they turned out great! Good flavor and still nice and crunchy. I used some of the brine to start a new one with some penos, garlic, onions and carrots. Trying a new type of waterless lid on this one. Completed one on the left. I did a quart and divided them into 2 pints. 


Did a 3% salt brine. On avg how long do y'all let your lactos before you start to eat on them?




I just did this here: http://thehotpepper....h-fermentation/


Finally tasted the peppers today (3 weeks). You should let it go 3-4 weeks, minimum, before moving to the fridge. You can let it go longer before moving to the fridge, but after about 3 months the probiotic lacto-bacteria population will start to decline.


For more repeatable results, weight your veggies add 2-2.5% salt by weight, then top with a brine of equal % salt by weight.


For example, if one batch has 700 grams of peppers and the next batch has 800 grams of peppers, the 3% salt brine won't give you the same saltiness in each batch. It may not be a huge difference, but if you want it the same every single time, weight out your ingredients.


*I learned this AFTER I set up these ferments, but I'll be weighing salt for everything going forward.

#1519210 Hungarian Paprika direct from Hungary

Posted by austin87 on 19 January 2018 - 12:30 PM





Please make one of these and report back!

#1518903 austin87 getting funky (with fermentation)

Posted by austin87 on 17 January 2018 - 09:11 PM

Update: juice from the first batch of sauerkraut seems to be a very effective starter, even at the small amount of a spoonful. The escabeche (jalapeños, onions, and carrots) bubbled out of the airlock lid (it was the fullest jar) and all of them are showing a cloudy brine and bubbles, all good signs for fermentation!

Now, what to do while I wait around on this stuff for a month...

#1518668 Fermented Sausages?

Posted by austin87 on 17 January 2018 - 12:18 AM

I've done quite a bit of research on the topic. Most people recommend you start with a salumi - it's a cured meat made from a whole muscle. Think prosciutto or bresaola. It tends to be easier and safer for first timers because you don't grind the meat and expose surface bacteria into the middle of the salami or sausage.


You can rig up a small wooden box w/ a computer fan and a bowl of water to control humidity. The key is keeping humidity high at the beginning, and gradually reducing humidity so it is never too much lower than the meat that curing. If the initial air humidity is too low, the outer layer will dry out to fast and form a case that traps moisture and can lead to the piece rotting from within.


I have designs on a future temperature and humidity controlled environment to take up this hobby. For now, ham and bacon are simpler and turn out great.

#1518635 austin87 getting funky (with fermentation)

Posted by austin87 on 16 January 2018 - 10:38 PM

Interesting stuff. Fermented garlic, that sounds cool. Have you ever done this before?


Nope, sauerkraut was my first attempt. I've done a quite a bit of online reading and I have several years of experience curing ham and bacon at home. Decently familiar with salt percentages and very careful about food safety and cleanliness.


Here's the garlic recipe I followed: https://www.cultures...-garlic-cloves/ - guess it can be used pretty much anywhere you would use fresh garlic.


Looks great..I have Amanda Feifer's book on fermenting vegetables it is a great read with lots of cool recipes I've never tried. After seeing yours I need to expand my horizons beyond kraut and hot sauce.


I've looked at a couple of books to pick up on Amazon and this one is pretty highly rated. It's probably the next source I check out.

#1518577 austin87 getting funky (with fermentation)

Posted by austin87 on 16 January 2018 - 08:15 PM

Also, I signed up for a 6 week pottery class with the intention to make a couple of my own fermentation crocks, similar to this German-made one here. It starts January 25 and I'm really excited for it. Should also be able to make a couple bowls and/or vases for my mom and girlfriend.

#1518576 austin87 getting funky (with fermentation)

Posted by austin87 on 16 January 2018 - 08:12 PM

Last week I started a quart of sauerkraut in a rigged/re-purposed food grade plastic pickle jar. I used 2% salt by weight, added some caraway seeds and Joyner's 7 pod white powder, and covered with a double layer of cheesecloth held on by a rubber band. It turned out fantastic and was so easy that I invested in a couple airlock lids and glass fermentation weights to get some more stuff going, and spent several hours yesterday setting it up. From left to right (all jars are wide mouthed quart jars):


  1. Finished sauerkraut w/ caraway and Joyner's 7 pod white powder (coincidentally transferred into a jar from store bought kraut)
  2. Garlic (13 freaking heads all painstakingly peeled!)
  3. Asparagus spears with garlic, lemon peel, and peppercorns
  4. Mushrooms (boiled in salt water, with added ginger, peppercorns, and rosemary; 2% brine was created from the leftover mushroom broth - just occurred to me while writing this that it may be over-salted, we will see!)
  5. Onion, carrot, and jalapeño w/ garlic, peppercorns, cumin, and Mexican oregano

ferment pic.JPG


All of these have a bay leaf, which is supposed to help with texture, and each jar received a spoonful of kraut juice from my first ferment as a "starter". I'm not sure if it was sufficient volume to kick anything off, but it can't hurt.


The garlic will probably go for at least a month, most others will probably be done in a week or two.


The goal/plan is to spend the next several months fermenting anything and everything and get my technique, salt ratios, and any other variables dialed in before pepper harvest.

#1514475 indoor greenhouse?

Posted by austin87 on 30 December 2017 - 02:27 PM

Very nice!

#1513949 Butter, oil or bacon juice?

Posted by austin87 on 27 December 2017 - 07:29 PM

I came to chime in with sausage grease for sausage gravy but salsalady beat me to it. I usually use butter, have also used bacon grease, lard, tallow, and the leftover chicken fat grease from cooking chicken thighs (almost schmaltz).


My friend's family cooks a goose every year for Christmas and he swears that the goose fat gravy is in fact the tastiest of all gravies.


Personally I wouldn't use oil unless it was all I had, I think most any other natural fat that is solid at room temperature (no shortening or hydrogenated oil garbage) would be better than oil.


Does make think that coconut oil (solid at room temperature) might be interesting as a base for a Thai and/or curry inspired gravy...

#1509556 Age your hot sauce in... seconds?

Posted by austin87 on 07 December 2017 - 01:11 PM

They have those magnetic wine agers too, and I don't think they are anything more than a gimmick.


I'd also be concerned about putting metal in a ferment due to the acid content (from the guy who literally dissolved the metal parts of his French press he was fermenting in... the press is supposed to keep mash below the liquid level and prevent mold, but 90 days was way too long).

#1508767 Sous Vide Branzino

Posted by austin87 on 03 December 2017 - 07:11 PM

This looks awesome, I love branzino. I actually just pulle my Joule out for the first time and put in a chuck tender to make roast beef for sandwiches. I came here looking for ideas and glad I saw this!

#1508183 Frutescens: Why do people seem less interested in it?

Posted by austin87 on 01 December 2017 - 02:05 AM

I found the tabasco peppers that I grew last season to be very juicy and soft, unlike the firm and crisp you get when biting into an annum or chinense. Pop of heat that subsided quickly, not a ton of flavor but enjoyable in their own way. Unfortunately I didnt get many pods as the roots never penetrated the 3 peat pot the plant came in (bummer to find that out end of season when I expected the 5 gallon container the peat pot was planted in to be filled with roots).

Id really like to grow tabanaga (tabasco x Dorset naga) or baby morich (tabasco x naga morich) at some point. Check out The Hippy Seed Co. out of Australia.

#1506959 edit: favorite chile LOOKS ONLY EDITION

Posted by austin87 on 25 November 2017 - 10:47 PM

I don't get the question. The title says what chile pepper comes to mind when someone mentions it. In the post it asks for favorite. So is this just another favorite pepper thread???
What fish comes to mind when I say fish?
What is your favorite fish?
Very different.

Favorite chile for looks only. Take taste and heat completely out of it. What pepper do you think has the best look?

To use celebrities as an example, I have the biggest crush on Anna Kendrick. She's cute, funny, seems like someone I would wanna hang out with (this would be your favorite chile, the whole package). In my mind the hottest celebrities are Liz Hurley (nostalgia edition) and Margot Robbie (current edition). They are absolute smoke shows on the eyes. They are both hot as all hell, and personality, being cool, etc., doesn't matter. This your favorite pepper to look at, nothing else like heat, flavor, how you use it, matters.

So, again, favorite chile LOOKS ONLY EDITION. Taste, heat, nothing else matters but how it looks.