This fresh light salad can be made with many different vegetables depending on the season, I will give you the recipe of exactly what I put in this time, and at the end of the recipe a list of the other vegetables that like this type of marinade. The salad is made in a large glass jar which is put on a sunny windowsill for a couple of days to lightly ferment and tenderise the vegetables. The fermentation also adds to the prebiotic qualities of the vegetables.
50 grams sea salt
20 grams sugar
750 ml water
400 ml cider vinegar
romanesco cauliflower – cut into smallish florets
carrots – peeled and very thinly sliced
radishes – very thinly sliced
Spring onion and garlic – sliced diagonally
In a large jug, mix the water and vinegar with the salt and sugar. Stir well.
Layer the vegetables in a large jar adding a sprinkling of mustard seeds as seasoning with each set of layers.
Push the layers down to compact the vegetables and then see if you need more layers. Once the vegetables soften they will naturally compact down, so it’s a good idea to firm them down at this stage.
Once the jar is full, add the brine and vinegar, fill to the top of the jar.
Stand the jar in a container to catch any overspill of liquid. You will need to put something in the neck of the jar to weigh down the contents and stop them rising above the liquid. I use a small round plastic container to fit inside the jar neck, and a jar of beans as the weight.
Place the whole contraption on a sunny window sill for 2-3 days to ferment. The vegetables will emit bubbles of gas as they marinade, which will push some of the liquid out over the top of the jar, hence the need to have a container to catch the excess.
Once the bubbling has stopped remove the weight, top up the jar with the overspill liquid and more of the brine mix if necessary. Put the lid on the jar. Wash the outside of the jar.
Leave the salad to continue marinating in the fridge for a couple more days and then it will be ready to eat.
The salad will keep for a couple of weeks, so doesn’t need to be eaten all in one sitting.
Other vegetables that can be used for this salad are: white cabbage, Chinese leaves, red peppers, bean sprouts, cucumber and courgettes, broccoli and white cauliflower. The spice and seasoning can be varied too, I used mustard seeds to complement the cauliflower. Dill is traditional in Eastern Europe, coriander, caraway seeds, fresh herbs, citrus peel. If you want to give the salad a more oriental flavour, then add fresh ginger, lemon grass and chilli….and maybe a splash of Nam Pla. Have a play with flavours and see which ones you like!