All You Need
My NALC student and I often talk about vegetable gardening--our successes (too many eggplants) and failures (hasn’t this been the worstyear for tomatoes!). We both plant a lot of peppers, probably because they thrive no matter what.
Recently, I was complaining about what to do with the plethora of Cubanelles and Jalapeños I had this fall and she suggested I pickle them. I’ve worked all my life in labs, so I immediately started worrying about how to set this experiment up. What salt should I use? What concentration? Should I incubate at room temp or 4°C? My student studied math in her native Egypt: she would have been happy to help me calculate the proper NaCl molarity for perfect pickling. Instead she told me this story.
Put water in pickling jar and start stirring in salt (regular is fine: Whole Foods not required). As you do, from time to time gently drop an uncooked egg into the water. Initially, it will sink, but when the amount of salt reaches the optimal pickling point, the egg will begin to float upward as its density matches that of the brine. Remove egg. Add peppers. Close jar. Wait a few weeks.
Amazing what you learn as a teacher!