hist-brewing: Re: tabasco fermenting

Jeff Renner JeffRenner at comcast.net
Mon Aug 19 11:44:33 PDT 2002

Teresa in Oklahoma <Teresa.Bell at tinker.af.mil> asked

>does anyone know how to ferment tabasco and  the exact proportions of
>vinegar and peppers and salt and fermenting time?
>the only thing I can find is this information.  (They say it's crushed and
>mixed with Avery Isand salt and allowed to ferment for 2 - 3 years with
>periodic inspections, then mixed with fine grain vinegar, you can always
>have several bottles fermenting with different proportions of salt and mix

I don't know the answer, but I've made sauerkraut by layering 
shredded cabbage and kosher or canning salt.  I suspect you could use 
the same proportions, which should be easy to find.  Recipes for kim 
chee, a Korean pickled cabbage and peppers, might be another place to 



I did a google search for "fermented hot peppers" recipe and got this 
post from 

[CH] Fermented hot peppers
Scates, Dannie (DANNIES at aiinet.com)
Wed, 13 Mar 2002 13:32:58 -0500

Donnie asked for information about fermenting peppers
My current favorite method for making an aged hot sauce:
1. (optional) Make fermented sauerkraut using cabbage and 3% to 6% salt or
something close. (Keep the cabbage weighted at least 1-2 in below surface of
2. Keep the scum skimmed till ready to make hot sauce. (Better to cover
tightly with plastic wrap and a rubber band to prevent the scum)
3. Grind up the ripe peppers (blender, food processor, knife, maybe even a
Corona mill, finer is better)
4. Mix 3% to 6% by weight canning salt and a few ounces of kraut juice with
the pepper pulp, pack in a kraut container. (I am using clear plastic, no
hollow handle, 1 galon  juice jug not more than 3/4 full because it expands
or builds up pressure)
5. Weigh down as if making sauerkraut ( I use plastic bags partly filled
with 10% salt water, in case the bag breaks) and keep covered so no air gets
in ( I use a wine airlock in a stopper)and the scum cleared off for a few
6. When ready to can, I use a Foley Food Mill to separate the sauce from
seeds and peel.
	I dry the seed and peel in a dehydrator on wax paper liners and
later grind into an aged magic dust.
7. I add about 1 quart vinegar to 3 quarts pepper sauce.( adjust to suit
	Use pepper powder to adjust heat and taste to suit.
8. Boil in a stainless pot, hot pack, put on canning lids, and process in
hot water bath canner like tomato sauce.

Follow all safety and accepted practices.
Enjoy both an aged hot sauce and a magic powder with a slight aged flavor.
  Dannie S
and another at 

Cameron Begg (begg.4 at osu.edu)
Mon, 11 Mar 2002 13:08:41 -0500

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Hi C-H's,

Donnie from Little Rock asked:

>Anyone have a good recipe for fermenting chiles?
>I'm looking for something similar to the way they make tabasco sauce
>- with pepper mash, water, and salt.
>What's the best way to store it as it ferments?

Kris Blennow and I had a fairly long exchange on this topic a few
years ago. I don't think we ever really understood exactly what was
going on, but we came up with some methods for fermenting chile mash.
My method depended upon salt tolerant yeasts to do the job in a mash
of 15-18% salt. I did it in a gallon wine making jar with an airlock.
What you end up with is Tabasco concentrate. Commercially this is cut
it with vinegar before being sold.
                       Regards,               Cameron.


I'm sure a more diligent search will turn up more.

Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, JeffRenner at comcast.net
"One never knows, do one?"  Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943

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