Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Lacto-fermented Salsa

Yes, another lacto-fermented recipe! Pretty soon I might have to rename this blog into

I don't eat fermented foods like crazy. I do have a few in my fridge and a few on my counter. I don't eat them all the time but they come in handy and they last forever! I've been turning more to them as harvest season is dying down a bit and there is less local vegetables in the grocery store everyday. That's a reason to lacto-ferment in itself, that there will be tasty vegetables in your fridge or cellar when winter comes (if you don't eat them first!). If you are intimated by making or even eating lacto fermented foods think about everything you already eat that is fermented! Beer, sourdough, yogurt, cheese, sour cream... things you may have forgotten are actually fermented foods. We are attracted to them because they make food taste better, store better, are easier to digest, and help us digest other foods as well. However, as we often still ferment dairy and grains fermenting vegetables is not as common. Sauerkraut is still fairly common but not made traditional/fermented much anymore. I use to think sauerkraut was a strange food and wouldn't eat it, until I learned a bit about what makes lacto-fermentation so amazing (i.e. it's not just some old rotting food people are eating for some strange reason). You can tell the difference between rotting food and fermenting food. Fermenting food is usually still attractive in its own way, and will smell tangy- it will smell GOOD. Rotting food will not. You will not want to eat rotting food, nor want it hanging out in your kitchen...

So if this isn't a good enough reason to at least try lacto fermenting I don't know what is! Now is a great time a year to try with the still warmish weather and all the vegetables in season. Perfect time for kraut! I have some on my counter. However, this recipe is for Salsa. I think lacto-fermented salsa tastes much better than fresh salsa! It adds a delious tanginess and will keep, if you don't eat it, for months. Fresh salsa is only good for a few days. Salsa is also one of the simpler things to lacto ferment and you can adapt any salsa recipe to make it fermented, but below there is a basic recipe, feel free to change to your tastes. Note in the pic below I used a purple bell pepper, it is not an eggplant!

Ingredients for fermenting:
1T Sea Salt
2T Whey (optional) (see this post on how to make whey)
Two wide mouth mason quart jars or one two quart jar (glass!) with lids

Ingredients for salsa:
One bunch cilantro
One onion
2 cloves garlic
1 jalapeno
half of a bell pepper
About a dozen small tomatoes or 6ish bigger ones, this all really depends on the size of the tomatoes... or use tomatillos. I used both, which is why my salsa came out green.
1 teaspoon Cumin
2 teaspoons oregeno

You can chop by hand but it is much easier to use a food processor.

Pulse onion,garlic, cilantro, cumin, and oregeno finely in the food processor. Add peppers and process some more. Add tomatoes and pulse just a few times. When you add the tomatoes add the 2T whey and 1T sea salt.

Pour into two glass jars or one big jar. This receipe makes about one quart and a half of salsa, you can add more tomatoes if you want to fill the jars completely.

Leave jars on your counter for 48 hours at room temp.

Release lids breifly before putting into fridge to let out trapped air. You may see bubbles, this is good, it means it is working. Your salsa will store for many months in a cold environment now! If you dont eat it all in a few days, because it will taste amazing and be the healthiest salsa you have ever eatten.

This post linked to Fight Back Friday!

This post linked to Sunday School at Butter Believer

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