I judge a proper deli as much by the crispness of its half-sours as by the tenderness of its brisket. Recently, I stumbled upon an easy way to make them using some of the fruits of my nukazuke labor.
It was accidental. I had buried too many cucumbers and had to remove them from the rice bran bed after only one night. I quickly cut the cucumbers into thick slices, put them in a jar of water and left them on the kitchen counter. Within a day, they were crisp and gently sour from the residual rice bran that I had lazily left on the slices. You can see some of the bran that fell to the bottom of the jar, where the bacteria living in them continued to work.
I’m going to try another batch with garlic cloves and a lots of coriander, mustard and dill seeds. Maybe even a chile or two.
Now if only I can figure out a shortcut to making some of my own Montreal-style smoked meat.