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are pickles fermented

Are Pickles Fermented?

While cucumbers have stolen the spotlight, you can “pickle” just about anything!

At first thought, pickles typically produce a mental image of a cucumber soaked in vinegar. While those are super tasty, they are just a small glimpse of the world of pickle possibilities. Just in the cucumber realm, there are bread and butter, dill, half-sour, full-sour, sweet, gherkin, relish, and the list goes on.

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Are Pickles Fermented?

So, are pickles fermented? Some are! Pickling refers to the preservation of food in an acidic solution. Some fermentation, such as lactic acid fermentation, produces acid naturally, resulting in a pickle. Other types of pickles utilize vinegar, which is the product of fermentation. Are vinegar pickles fermented? It’s up for debate. While the vinegar is fermented, there’s not much active fermentation going on during the pickling process. Rather, the vinegar is acting more like a marinade, penetrating the food, providing flavor, and a slight change in texture.

What Is a pickle?

A pickle, as a noun, generally refers to a cucumber that has soaked in vinegar or fermented. As a verb, pickle becomes much more versatile, referring to preserving food in an acidic medium. You can pickle vegetables, fruit, beans, and some more diverse foods like herring, eggs, or pig’s feet!