Archives for posts with tag: salsa

IMG_20180816_101206.jpgTwo fun things, and they both have to do with tortilla chips.  Perhaps this is because, as a taco fiend, I often have broken corn tortillas calling for rescue.

Watermelon Pickle, well, the rind at least, the green skin carefully pared from the white pretty flavourless bulk that contains the precious sweet pink flesh. You’ve heard about it this pickle… you’ve wondered.  You don’t see the point in vinegar really as you identify more as a fermenter.  You look up fermented watermelon rind and find a recipe that suggests you make a brine. You kind of decide not to make a brine– there’s so much water itself in the watermelon. Instead you pack the pared rind that you’ve saved by insisting everyone puts them in a special bowl, and a teaspoon of sea salt, and you pack it down in a jar, and observe it getting wetter and wetter, creating it’s own layer of brine.  It occurs to you to add some hot pepper, in this case a yellow jalapeño.  This was a good idea but you could use any herb or spice or flavour as watermelon rind is really so very mild and passive. “Do with me what you will,” it said.

You realise quickly it’s not going to keep a bite or crunch very easily, so you surrender. After several days you taste it, and you are like, wow, THIS is fermented watermelon rind pickle.  Here we are, this is it. And you get the urge to chop it up with spring onions and the jalapeño, and loads of fresh coriander, and make a salsa.


Other salsas:

Fermented Orange Salsa; 

Fermented Gooseberry Salsa

Fermented Chili Salsa


IMG_20180722_113707.jpgKIMCHI FAUXRITOS, 


last time I ate spicy cheesy Doritos, along with, admittedly, red wine, I got such a killer migraine that I’m afraid to eat them again but do miss the whole experience so decided to try a DIY, perhaps healthier version:

Had some rather pungent kimchi in the fridge which I dehydrated in a very low oven.  It took a while….


When it felt really dry,  I pulverised it as much as possible, mixed it with oil

two ways:

Fry the uncooked (corn) tortilla scraps in the spicy oil, or

Toss the broken pieces (or proper triangles) in the dried kimchi and oil and bake in the oven.

I made two batches of each, one with nutritional yeast (for a cheesy note) and one without.

Comments: These are really nice snacks, fun to make, serve and eat.  They didn’t have that WHAM of Doritos, but maybe that’s not a bad thing.  I might add extra chilli powder next time.



Invite me to your sunny picnic, this is what I’ll make to bring!  Fresh and spicy, sweet and sour, savoury, crunchy, moreish, yum!

You all know I would never be strictly prescriptive in these salads that combine fermented elements with fresh fruit and vegetables. This one is simply

  • grated beetroot,
  • chopped apples,
  • a few tablespoons  of  Rhubarb Kimchi, pureed, mixed in with:
  • a vinaigrette of olive oil and orange juice
  • dash of toasted sesame oil
  • a sprinkle of toasted pecans

Add anything else– goats cheese, feta, other nuts and seeds, carrots, fennel, cabbage, herbs, wild greens, lettuces or leaves….  Whatevah!

You can always use cabbage kimchi in salad dressings too.

The rhubarb kimchi, pureed, is also a wonderful salsa / raw chutney with goat’s cheese and crackers.IMG_20180514_141627.jpg

And of course, scraps from the beetroot, apple, and orange, and a new stalk of rhubarb from the raised bed in the garden, make a wonderful kvass!  And nothing’s been wasted.IMG_20180514_141609.jpg


In the world of enthusiastic fermenters, there are lots of people whose children are gung-ho eaters of various healthy ferments– carrots with dill, sauerkraut, water kefir beverages, beetroot kvass, etc. Mine have never been these kind of children. One child panics — not kidding — if he thinks he’s going to have to smell sauerkraut; the other just looks in disgust at the Ruby-Kraut on her daddy’s plate.

But today, without their knowing, but not seeking to deceive them through any ruse, I had a breakthrough.

Lazy and busy, I decided to serve corn tortillas with melted cheese, and made a salsa.  Not my finest hour as a Mother/ Cook, but I am trying to be easy on myself and was terribly hurried.

The incredibly easy salsa was, whizzed up:
One tin of tomatoes
One onion
a large handful of fresh spinach
maybe two tablespoons of fermented green chillis of can’t-remember variety

I LOVE that my kids are beginning to revel in spicy foods, I love that they no longer reject things with leafy green bits, but mostly I’m happy that i managed to get them to enjoy food with that wonderful sour back-taste that I find so satisfying and know to be so health-giving.

And, it was the best Mexican style salsa I’ve ever made.  Recently I made something similar with the cascabellas but this was better– the spicy heat was really radiant and smooth and the sour, really compelling.

The green chilis I’d fermented— something someone brought home.  With a few cloves of garlic, I put them in salt water under the surface of which I kept it all for a few months, forgetting its existence, until yesterday I saw the jar and thought to use the slightly odd looking contents therein.

How salty a salt brine?  I like to use this guideline: somewhere between tears of joy and sea-water.   Taste first– you can add but can’t remove…

I increasingly enjoy using vegetables I’ve fermented as an ingredient– in sauces, dressings, spreads, dips and soups.  On their own, these chilis were nothing special– as part of something else, they came alive.

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