International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Curtido

Curtido Recipe (Salvadoran cabbage salad)

(Salvadoran cabbage salad)

Image Creative Commons by The DLC

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Curtido is a simple cabbage salad traditionally served with pupusas. Large jars of curtido are kept at restaurants and sides of the slaw are served with most meals. Curtido is usually allowed to ferment slightly at room temperature before serving, becoming a kind of Salvadoran sauerkraut.

Cabbage salads are served through Central America. The Nicaraguan version is known as ensalada de repollo or simply repollo.

4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

  • Cabbage, shredded -- 1/2 head
  • Carrot, peeled and grated -- 1
  • Boiling water -- 4 cups
  • Scallions, minced -- 3
  • White vinegar -- 1/2 cup
  • Water -- 1/2 cup
  • Jalapeño or serrano chile pepper, minced -- 1
  • Salt -- 1/2 teaspoon

Method

  1. Place the cabbage and carrots in a large heat-proof bowl. Pour the boiling water into the bowl to cover the cabbage and carrots and set aside for about 5 minutes. Drain in a colander, pressing out as much liquid as possible.
  2. Return the cabbage and carrots to the bowl and toss with the remaining of the ingredients. Let set at room temperature for a couple hours or overnight if you like. Then chill and serve as an accompaniment to pupusas or as a side dish.

Curtido Variations

  • Ensalada de Repollo (Nicaragua): add a chopped tomato or two and substitute lime juice for the vinegar.
  • Try using vinagre de piña instead of white vinegar.
  • Substitute 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of red pepper flakes for the chile pepper.
  • A pinch of sugar and a little oil can be added to the salad if you like.

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