Tomato Pickle/Relish in a crock - safe ?
My Dad made a recipe from a Fanny Farmer cookbook (maybe a reprint of an 1898) for a tomato pickle/relish that is stored in a crock. He checked it after a few days and it had bubbled over. The recipe said to leave it alone for a week so he did. So after a week, he says its clear, sparkling, no bad smell or taste. He plans on keeping it in a crock in the basement. Tells me the recipe says its good for a year. Can this be true ? He feels they wouldn't put it in a book if it was bad for you. I say - it was 1898 ! I know pickles and kraut are done in crocks - but what should he be careful of ?
Wow, he's a brave one :) Honestly I am no expert but it's true that there are fermented foods like kraut and pickles that are perfectly safe to eat if properly prepared. I don't know about relish, but it sounds like it's on the same principle.
No county extension or health dept is going to encourage him in this, but if the preparation included a lot of acid in the form of vinegar, it's probably mostly safe. But it might not be--I wouldn't serve it to anyone under 2 or over 70 or with a compromised immune system just in case.
If it molds or changes or smells I would throw it out--keep in mind that houses in 1898 were kept much colder than today.