Curtido - Spicy Central American Kraut
Serves: 1.5 qts
Recipe is adapted from Fermented Vegetables by Kirsten and Christopher Shockey
  • ½ large cabbage, sliced in small thin pieces
  • 1-2 carrots, julienned (sliced in small match sticks)
  • 1 onion (use red if you have it for the color), sliced thinly
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1-2 tsp. red chili pepper flakes
  • Pinch of cumin
  • 2 tsp. salt
  1. In a large bowl mix all the ingredients together and “massage” the vegetables with your hands. Cover the bowl and leave it alone for 45 minutes.
  2. Transfer this mixture to a crock or large glass jar and use your fists or a blunt object (called a tamper) to push everything down into the jar. The goal is to push hard enough for the vegetables to release their juices (which will form the brine) and to eliminate air pockets.
  3. Once you’ve pressed sufficiently to create enough brine to cover the vegetables add an extra leaf of cabbage to cover everything (this is called a follower). Then place a large ziplock bag on top of the vegetables and fill it with water to act as a weight to hold the veggies submerged under the brine.
  4. Every day check to make sure everything is submerged. Take the ziplock out if necessary to push the veggies back down below the brine. Start testing the flavor after 4-5 days and once it tastes nice and sour you can transfer it to smaller jars and refrigerate. It will keep for a long time in the fridge, but it likely won’t last that long because it’s so good!
Recipe by The Local Kitchener at