Fermented Salsa is a delicious way to have fresh tasting salsa that keeps for months
I love to make fresh salsa, especially this time of year when gardens and Farmer’s markets are full of amazing fresh produce. By adding a simple step and just a couple of days, you’ll end up with zesty, probiotic packed fermented salsa.
I purchased some fermentation lids from Amazon this spring and hadn’t really done a lot with them when I ran across a recipe for fermented salsa online and decided to give it a try. I took my usual fresh salsa recipe and tweaked it a bit to create some pretty delicious salsa if I do say so myself
What is Fermented Salsa?
Fermented salsa is simply salsa plus a bit of extra salt that’s been left at room temperature to allow the good bacteria to grow.
Fermented foods are a great source of probiotics – you can ferment lots of different things beyond what we typically think of (sauerkraut, kimchi, etc.). Try these easy fermented carrots. The process involves the breakdown of sugars that then turn into yeast and bacteria. Most vegetables are naturally covered in lactic-acid bacteria. When the they are submerged in brine (aka saltwater), the good bacteria ferments the food. And the cool thing about the salt is that it helps prevent bad bacteria from growing making fermentation a simple AND safe process.
Fermented Salsa is delicious
The fermentation process adds a tangy taste to the salsa, which to me, otherwise tastes like fresh made salsa. It will also preserve the food. After the initial few days on your kitchen counter, fermented salsa will keep for a couple of months – a whole lot longer than fresh salsa keeps, right?!?
We also add in the benefits of probiotics. Gut health has become a popular buzz word. Many people take a probiotic supplement because they are so powerful for supporting not only digestive health but also our immune system. The majority of our immune system is based in the gut. Probiotics help support the immune system’s function, helping you stay healthier. I don’t know about you all, but staying healthy is pretty high up on my priority list these days.
How do you make it?
If you make fresh salsa, you can make fermented salsa. A fermentation lid is helpful but not required. It naturally releases the pressure that builds up during the fermentation process. If you don’t have any, just “burp” the jar a couple times during the initial ferment. You’ll also find fermentation weights helpful. You need to keep the salsa veggies completely submerged in the brine. A fermentation weight does this, but so does a cabbage leaf or similar. These are the fermentation lids and weights that I have.
The other thing you need is salt. Use a fine salt, and f you want to add some extra nutrients, use a mineral salt like Redmond’s. I never thought I’d have a favorite salt, but here I am. I use this salt for my herbal salt too. The flavor is top notch.
Below is my favorite homemade salsa recipe adapted for fermentation. Feel free to adjust based on your preferences – or you can use your own secret recipe. Just make sure to add enough salt. If you taste test before fermentation, it should be salty but not SALTY. In other words, you should be able to taste the salt but it should still taste good. Some people like to add a bit of kombucha or water kefir to kick start the fermentation, but I haven’t found that to be necessary. I like the flavor of salsa with just salt and some lime juice.
We really love tomatillos in our salsa but if you can’t find them or just want to use the plethora of tomatoes from your garden, simply replace with more tomatoes. And if you like things spicier, increase the jalapenos or use whatever hot peppers you enjoy.
What is your favorite way to serve salsa? This stuff is SO good on tacos. Your Tuesday will never be the same again.
- fermentation lid
- fermentation weight
- 1 pound tomatoes, chopped
- 1 pound tomatillos, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 jalapeno pepper, chopped
- 2 sweet peppers, chopped I like to use orange and yellow to make it pretty
- 1 bunch cilantro, chopped optional, especially if you’re one of those people who think it tastes like dirty dishwater. Personally, I like it
- 1 red onion, chopped
- 2 limes, juiced or be lazy like me and use 6 T lime juice
- 1 tablespoon finely ground salt get some Redmond’s Real Salt; you’ll thank me later. You can get it from Thrive
- In a large bowl, combine all of the above ingredients. Toss to thoroughly combine. Give the salsa a taste test to make sure you can taste the salt. It's crucial to the fermentation process
- Place the salsa in a glass jar with air tight lid. We use wide mouth mason jars with the fermentation lids. With this recipe, we use two quart jars. Press the salsa down and add all the brine so that the vegetables are submerged in the brine. Top with fermentation weight. If you’re using a cabbage leaf or other perishable weight, make sure to toss it after fermentation.
- Add fermentation lid (or whatever lid you have), place on counter, not in direct sunlight though. Allow to ferment for 2 days. After about 24 hours you should notice bubbles forming in the salsa. This is normal. We want this! This is the fermentation!!
- The fermented salsa will be ready in 2-3 days. Remove fermentation weight, and if using a fermentation lid you can change to a regular lid at this point. You can serve right away or store in the refrigerator for several months.