1 FERMENTED FOOD A DAY! IF YOU ARE TRYING TO WORK MORE FERMENTED FOODS INTO YOUR DIET, ADD A LITTLE CURTIDO TO YOUR USUAL BREAKFAST OR LUNCH SCENARIO! IT GOES GREAT WITH FRIED OR SCRAMBLED EGGS IN A BREAKFAST BAGEL! ADD SOME TO YOUR BLACK BEAN AND RICE BURRITO FOR LUNCH OR SERVE IT AS A CRUNCHY SIDE SALAD FOR A LATIN NIGHT WITH BURRITOS, TACOS OR TORTILLA SOUP!
CURTIDO IS A SALVADOREAN FERMENTED CABBAGE SIDE DISH SIMILAR TO SAUERKRAUT BUT WITH SOME FUN ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS LIKE CUMIN AND JALAPEÑO! ONCE YOU GET INTO MAKING AND EATING IT, YOU’LL ALWAYS WANT TO HAVE ANOTHER BATCH BREWING SO YOU’LL NEVER RUN OUT!
A crunchy fermented Salvadorian side dish, like a Latin sauerkraut!
- 2 green cabbages
- 2 medium-sized white or yellow onions
- 2-3 carrots
- 2 jalapeños
- 6 cloves of garlic
- 1 tsp whole cumin
- 2 tbsp dried oregano
- 2 tbsp salt
- Carefully remove the outer leaves from your cabbages. Chuck the duds and set aside a few of the better ones for a primary follower (a ‘leaf lid’ that transitions between your veg and the weight that keeps your veg submerged where it’s safe!). Quarter and core the cabbages. Chuck the cores and slice the rest into strips about 1/4″ or 5 mm thick.
- Quarter and thinly slice onions.
- Julienne carrots.
- Dice jalapeños.
- Grate or very finely dice your garlic (it can turn blue so you don’t want big pieces!).
- Combine veg in a (very) large bowl, adding the salt as you go.
- Add the cumin and oregano.
- After tossing for a few minutes you’ll start to see fluid forming in the bottom of your bowl. It’s working! The salt is breaking down the cell walls and the cells are releasing water. You can gently work the salt in with your hands if the fluid is slow to form. You want enough fluid to cover the solids when you put them in the jar to ferment, so toss ’til there’s a reasonable amount!
- Transfer everybody into large jars, pressing down as you go to make sure there’s no air pockets and most importantly, that all the solids are fully submerged!
- Fill each jar to about 3/4 full, then place a couple of large cabbage leaves (cup side up so they don’t trap air underneath them) over top as a primary follower.
- Weigh everybody down with a sealed jar or plastic bag filled with water so everybody stays submerged.
- Wrap the whole scene with a kitchen towel to keep the flies out and let it sit for 1 to 2 weeks in a cool dark place with more or less consistent temperature.
- Check daily to make sure everybody stays fully submerged.
- Start tasting after 4 or 5 days, when sour to your liking, discard the follower leaves and tightly pack your curtido into smaller jars for storage in the fridge.