Before tin cans and freezers were invented, salt was also used to preserve foods.
Salt is traditionally used to preserve meat (curing, "corning"), fish (salted herrings), vegetables (sauerkraut) etc.
Even the Ancient Egyptians used this trick to extend the "shelf life" of their foods, while salted meats were often taken along to feed crews on long ocean voyages.
Make your own pickled cucumbers
- 1/2 kg small cucumbers
- 1/4 liter of vinegar
- 1/4 liter of water
- 1 tablespoon of salt
- Lay the cucumbers in a bowl, cover with cold water and let stand overnight. Then rinse thoroughly and dry off.
- Layer the cucumbers (along with tarragon, dill, vine leaves and peppercorns) in a clean container.
- Stir the vinegar and salt into the water and pour over the cucumbers so they are completely covered.
- Place a flat plate on the container and weight it down with a stone.
- Allow the cucumbers to stand in a cool place for at least 4 weeks, checking them from time to time. If you see a white layer of yeast forming on the surface, rinse of the cucumbers and replace the liquid.
In order to avoid yeast- or mold formation, you can also add a neutral cooking oil to the brine. Later, you will easily be able to remove the oil from the surface using a tablespoon.