Around a week ago I had a tray of leftover cherries. I rinsed them, cut them in half and took the stone out, mixed them with 2% by volume Kosher salt and vacuum sealed them.

I then left them on a counter in my kitchen for a week at room temperature (North Wales, for reference), "burping" the mixture on day 3, 5, 6,7 & 8.

I've opened the mixture today - the cherries were sour as expected, however I'm not sure if that is from the liquid that's come out of them, which smells pretty strongly of alcohol.

What have I made here? I was working off from the Noma fermentation guide and guess I sort of expected lacto-fermented cherries?

Googling would suggest I have made something in between this cherry chutney:


or umeboshi:


Any help gladly appreciated!

1 Answer 1


What makes you think they are not lacto-fermented cherries? The Noma guide is, of course, a reliable resource. I assume you followed the procedure for plums (or the general instructions for lacto-fermented fruits and vegetables), as the book does not have a specific recipe for cherries. It could be that you just allowed them to go too far for your liking. The book does talk about "watching the timing", and choosing a stopping point that suits your taste. The specific fruit, and of course the ambient conditions, will influence the fermentation.

The two links you attached are also for lacto-ferments. The chutney just has other ingredients added...so call them what you wish. I would say you have lacto-fermented cherries.

  • Thanks for your answer, apologies for the delay in accepting it. Think it was a case of first time nerves and you are right - if it looks like fermented cherries, tastes like fermented cherries and smells like fermented cherries, well it probably is fermented cherries! Commented Apr 15, 2020 at 15:05

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