Quick Curtido (Salvadoran Cabbage Slaw) Recipe

20140512-quick-curtido-primary.jpg
Photograph: Lauren Rothman

Why It Works

  • A hot vinegar brine lends acidity to cabbage, onions, and carrots, but quickly cooling it in the refrigerator with the vegetables retains their crisp texture and bright, fresh color.
  • Lightning-quick to prepare, the curtido will only get better with age in the fridge


What sauerkraut is to a hotdog and kimchi is to a Korean pancake, curtido is to a variety of Latin American dishes. This funky, vinegary cabbage, onion, and carrot slaw brings crunch and a hit of acid to a host of rich, long-cooked dishes that call out for brightness and texture. Traditional curtido is prepared days in advance, allowing it to develop a fermented tang, but this shortcut version—ready in only an hour—is a nice fallback when you don't have time to think ahead. Try it spooned atop braises such as beef barbocoa or sandwiched into Mexican gorditas.

Note: Curtido is ready within one hour, but improves with time. It can be stored in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to one month.

Recipe Facts

Active: 10 mins
Total: 70 mins
Makes: 5 cups

Rate & Comment

Ingredients

  • 1/2 small (2-pound) green cabbage, cored and very thinly sliced (about 4 cups)
  • 1/2 medium white onion, peeled and very thinly sliced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 carrots, peeled and shredded (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 small jalapeño, ribs and seeds removed, minced (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, toss together cabbage, onion, carrot, and jalapeño, if using. In a small saucepan, combine vinegar, salt, and sugar a cook over medium heat, stirring, until salt and sugar are just dissolved. Pour brine over vegetables and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for one hour before serving.

This Recipe Appears In