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Art Meets Science: Royal College of Art Students Create a ‘Brinery’ Fermentation Kit

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In a move to reduce food wastage and encourage the growth of probiotic bacteria – not to say promote an interesting range of new tastes – students from the Royal College of Art have designed a ‘Brinery’; a vessel in which fruit and vegetables can be preserved in a salt and water solution, thus pickling them.

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The butternut squash-shaped vessel has a dome-shaped cap that keeps the food submerged in its brine. Most regular containers keep the carbon dioxide (a by-product of the process) within; meaning that the cap has to be loosened to release it, but the Brinery cap allows it to escape. The Brinery also allows the food to be removed via an inner vessel, without it being touched by hands or utensils, whereas with more traditional containers, mould is often the result because of contamination.

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There’s an accompanying cookbook to help diners explore a new range of tastes: “Between fresh and rotten exists a creative space in which the most compelling of flavours arise, salsas, condiments, sauces, pickles, dressings. The possibilities are endless,” said the team’s Pratik Ghosh. A dining experience is also in the works to demonstrate the health benefits of a fermented diet. Projections will be mapped onto the vessel to show how the food is broken down. SEEN predicts that it can only be a matter of time before fermenting restaurants open based on this project. London has always embraced the new with gusto, even it is the reinvention of a forgotten process.

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