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fermenting When making a sauce with fermented peppers, is adding vinegar redundant?

Just trying to understand the science... Fermenting raises the acidity, creating an environment that keeps the nasties out. Vinegar does the same thing. So is it necessary to use vinegar if the peppers have been fermented? Or, is the acidity in the finished sauce not going to be enough with just fermented peppers, so vinegar is still necessary?
 
Also, do most commercial sauces use fermented peppers?
 
In your regular run of the mill fermented sauce, vinegar shouldn't be necessary. However, in processing you should pasteurize it to stop the fermenting process. Otherwise you could have a potential pressure bomb.

Vinegar is often added to fermented sauces to add to the flavor profile.
 
ShowMeDaSauce said:
Lacto B is still active down to around 3.2 ph although its activity is greatly reduced. By 3.0 its basically dormant. Look at Tabasco, its fermented for years but still contains vinegar.
 
So what's the purpose of fermenting the peppers if you're just gonna add vinegar anyway?
 
Ive pasteurized a fermented sauce. Forgot and left it out for about a week. One day it blew up. They all get some vinegar now. In theory if you ferment it long enough then vinegar wont be needed because there is no sugar left for it to eat.
 
I do like the flavor a little vinegar adds to a fermented sauce though. Helps a little with consistency too without raising the ph like just adding some water.
 
Why ferment? Flavor. Experimentation. Doing something different.

I got into got hot sauce because I now have a healthy habit that uses jars and scales and chemicals (acetic acid).
 
mosjef said:
 
So what's the purpose of fermenting the peppers if you're just gonna add vinegar anyway?
 

Yeah . . flavor here too.  I ferment all my mashes (also for flavor).  After I process the final mash into sauce, I put it in the fridge for a day or two.  Then I taste.  Sometimes I like some vinegar in there.  Sometimes it's Apple Cider, White or Red Wine vinegar.  Sometimes it's fresh lemon or lime juice. 
 
I started fermenting things like kraut and pickles because I loved the stuff I got at farmers markets. I've been making sauces for years but never thought of fermenting one till my wife turned me on to USMCMike's ferment post and I was hooked. Do you need vinegar in your finished sauce no as long as you keep your ph in the safe zone. I have fermented mash that I've been using to flavor soup that has no vinegar, Red peppers and Salt. But I usually add some vinegar to my sauces because I enjoy that extra zip. 
 
I'm a big fan of vinegar. Trying to get some mashes done right so I can make some vinegar sauces. I'm a newbie and know pretty much nothing.  :D I haven't even got to the point of know how much vinegar to add yet. 
 
I ferment for 6 months min most one year and my PH is around 3.3. I boil and bottle. Sometimes add citric acid if I'm make sauce and adding fruit like mango, peach, pineapple just to maintain my low ph. No need for any vinagers ever.
 

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ShowMeDaSauce said:
Lacto B is still active down to around 3.2 ph although its activity is greatly reduced. By 3.0 its basically dormant. Look at Tabasco, its fermented for years but still contains vinegar.
Tabasco is the weirdest food product. They ferment/age their peppers for a long time which should give a really mellow, complex flavor. Then they ruin it by adding something like 50% vinegar. Why???
 
jhc said:
Tabasco is the weirdest food product. They ferment/age their peppers for a long time which should give a really mellow, complex flavor. Then they ruin it by adding something like 50% vinegar. Why???
Because it still tastes good (obviously subjective), plus they can literally double their product that way, therefore doubling their profit EXTREMELY cheaply ;)
 
The only reason I add vinegar (post ferment) is to thin the consistency out if I have to. (Don't quote me on this, but) I think 'most' vinegars have a pH of around 2.5-2.9ish. They can be safely added to a sauce without worrying about raising the pH. "Neutral" water has a pH of around 7, so adding water to a sauce to thin it out will raise the pH because "math," lol. If you do decide to add water, I'd boil it first, then add it to the sauce/mash, then check the pH of the sauce again to make sure it's still under 4

When adding vinegar, I try to only use rice wine vinegar since it's pretty "mild," and will only alter the flavor of the sauce minimally.

:cheers:
 
Ive become a big fan of using rice vinegar also for adjustments before bottling. Korean brown rice vinegar being my favorite. If you have a large Asian market you might even be able to find it in double strength 8%. Just look for the 2x on the label. They also have the 2x apple cider vinegar which is a little more common.
 
I have a question. After fermenting I've read to bottle straight away OR process (cook) the mash and then bottle. Would the latter kill any lacto that you created, or alter the flavor? Would this make it more safe and shelf stable by killing off any potential bacteria that the ferment did not?
 
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