|This is what they looked like after sitting for a month.|
The next step was to dry them in the sun. Since I currently have Wednesdays off from work, I decided to let them sit out that day last week and see how dry they'd get. After all, strictly speaking I'm not making umeboshi, just something very close.
|Just out of the jar, drying on a cut-up old undershirt (washed, of course) and paper bag.|
|After a day in the sun.|
|After a few days in the jar, after drying. You can see the thicker brine that's seeping out in the bottom.|
So they've been sitting in their jar for a week, and so far they're doing fine. I used one in a bowl of beans I took to work, and I have to say they work very nicely with pinto beans. Their flavor is not quite like umeboshi: its almost metallic, and is taking some getting used to, but I'll keep experimenting to see what they go well with.
I'm looking forward to tasting them in a few months and finding out how the flavor develops.