Here I am with a bunch of rather ugly looking sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes are not the easiest vegetables to cook with. Their flesh easily turns into a mushy texture after steaming or grilling so I am curious to find out if fermenting these tubers reveal some qualities we were not aware of yet. I found the guidelines in the book Fermented Vegetables from Kirsten K. Shockey & Christopher Shockey, but tweaked the recipe a little bit.
Type of fermentation: lactofermentation
Tools: large bowl, glass jar, weight
1250 gr. of sweet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1/2 tablespoon whole coriander seeds
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon hot paprika powder
1-2 tablespoons fine Himalayan salt (or other unrefined sea salt)
1. Mix the sweet potato slices in a large bowl with the onion, garlic, coriander seeds and paprika powder and mix well.
2. Add 1,5 tablespoons of salt and massage it with your hands into the mixture.
3. Taste the mixture, it should taste salty without being overwhelming. Add more salt if it tastes too bland.
4. Let the mixture stand for half an hour until you see some liquid brine and massage the whole lot again
5. Transfer the mixture, a few handfuls at the time, to a gallon jar, pressing down with your fists until some brine comes to the top
6. Leave some headspace at the top and put a weight to submerge all the vegetables, close the jar
7. Set the jar aside on a plate or tray to ferment for 7 to 20 days at room temperature or a little cooler
8. Check daily to see if the vegetables are still submerged and let the carbon dioxide escape by opening the lid of the jar briefly.
9. Once you like the taste, transfer the sweet potato ferment to smaller, clean glass jars. Fill up the jars completely with no headspace and store in the fridge.