Friday, 27 November 2015

"Sauer" Curtido

I did say I was going to try this. Attempt now underway!

I don't know why last time I made Sauerkraut I got 12 cups of vegetables into a litre jar, and this time I only got 8 to 9 cups. And yes, a litre jar is approximately 4 cups, so that is still some serious packing.) I made Sauerkraut in red and green as well as the curtido, and it was all pretty consistant.

You'll note that unlike when I made traditional short-fermentation Curtido, I did not add any fresh hot peppers. Firstly, they are no longer in season, and secondly, they got hot enough after a week in the fresh Curtido that I was a bit nervous about what would happen after 6 weeks. I'll add an update to this post once I know how this turned out...

1 packed litre - 16 servings?
1 hour prep time - plus 6 weeks fermenting time

Fermented Curtido with Sauerkraut in the background

Make the Curtido:
6 cups finely shredded white (green) cabbage
2 cups carrot, peeled and grated
1 cup sliced onion
1 teaspoon pickling salt
1 tablespoon rubbed oregano
1/2 to 1 teaspoon hot paprika or cayenne flakes

Put the number of litre canning jars you intend to fill into a canner and cover them with an inch of water. Bring them to a boil and boil for 10 minutes. 

Meanwhile, wash and trim the cabbage, and finely shred it. Measure it and put it in a large mixing bowl. Peel, grate, measure, and add the carrot. Peel the onion, and slice it in half from pole to pole. Cut each half 2 or 3 times again from top to bottom, as each half lies flat side down on the cutting board. Then, cut into thin slices the other way. Add these onion shreds to the bowl of veggies.

Add the salt, oregano, and paprika or cayenne to the vegetables. Using your very clean hands, massage the vegetables together until the seasonings are very evenly distributed throughout, and the vegetables feel limp and are giving up a little juice. When the jar is sterilized, drain it well and pack the vegetables into it, using a wooden or stone tamper to pack it all in. A funnel (dropped into the boiling water for a few minutes before use) may be useful. There should be about an inch and a half headroom at the top of the jar once it is all in.

Add the Brine & Seal:
1 cup filtered water
1 teaspoon salt

Put a lid and rim on to boil. They can be used, if they are in good condition.

Put the water and salt into a pot and heat until the salt dissolves. The water can be warm, but should not be very hot. Ladle this brine over the vegetables now packed in the jar. Once it is all in wipe the rim carefully and put the lid on, making good contact with the jar but not tightening it too much. Put it in a cool spot on a pile of newspaper to ferment for up to 6 weeks.

Check every few days. If the jars overflow and the vegetables become exposed to the air, top up with a little more brine made as above. Change the newspaper as well!

Once the curtido is fermented, keep it in a cool spot, and once you open a jar keep it in the fridge.

Last year at this time I made Sautéed Brussels Sprouts with Mashed Parsnips.

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