Freaky Green Garlic Cloves In My 'Kraut!

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Freaky Green Garlic Cloves In My 'Kraut!

Postby nestromeda on Fri Feb 05, 2010 7:24 pm

Hey there! I'm just opening a pickle press of homemade lacto-fermented sauerkraut made with green cabbage, bay leaves, garlic cloves, caraway seeds, sprigs of thyme and celtic sea salt. It's been fermenting for 2 weeks, and everything tastes and smells okay, but the garlic cloves have turned a rather shocking shade of almost flourescent green! I cut the cloves open, and they're Playdough Green through and through. Has anyone ever had this happen or know why?
I've eaten the sauerkraut and so far, so good - I'm not dead yet. And I must say that it's one of my best batches yet! But those freaky green garlics - I would love to understand the process that produced them.
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Re: Freaky Green Garlic Cloves In My 'Kraut!

Postby rubyg580 on Sat Feb 06, 2010 10:01 am

I haven't used garlic in any brine ferments, but I did preserve some garlic cloves in vinegar, following instructions given out at a farmers' market. (i.e., jsut cover with vinegar. I refrigerate them, though the instructions said that wasn't necessary) The garlic cloves first turned the color green you describe, then after a few weeks, they became a pale gold, just a shade darker than they started out. The vinegar also turned that color. I dont' remember what type of vinegar I used.
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Re: Freaky Green Garlic Cloves In My 'Kraut!

Postby nestromeda on Sat Feb 06, 2010 10:34 am

Thanks for the reply, rubyg! That's interesting that they turned green and then back. I wonder if one of the many phytochemicals in the garlic converts to something else during the process? Just out of curiosity, I'm going to put my green garlics in vinegar and see what happens.
nestromeda
 
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Re: Freaky Green Garlic Cloves In My 'Kraut!

Postby nestromeda on Sat Feb 06, 2010 11:14 pm

Here's a reply I got from another forum:

"In northern China, aged fresh garlic is left in vinegar for a week to make an “intentionally intensely green” Laba garlic pickle traditionally served with New Year’s dumplings. Aged garlic is saturated with a chemical that turns garlic green when released by the acetic acid in the vinegar. The pigment itself turns out to be a close chemical relative of chlorophyll, which gives all green leaves their color.

The color change in garlic and garlic-onion blends is created, by the same handful of sulfur compounds and enzymes that give the allium family its unique pungent flavors. Under the right conditions, these chemicals react with each other and with common amino acids to make pyrroles, clusters of carbon-nitrogen rings. Essentially, these rings absorb different wavelengths of light and may appear green or blue, depending on their structure. To eliminate the blue hue of an onion-garlic blend, simply raise the heat in the pan—it will turna more acceptable pinkish-brown...
~~sourced from my cultural pickling book~~"
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