For an introduction to fermented foods, try this simple, 3-ingredient recipe. There’s something about the flavor of ginger that augments the flavor of garden-fresh carrots. If you’re not growing your own, look for carrots with their tops on at the market. If the tops appear bright green, aromatic, and fresh, the carrots will be, too. The fermentation period helps these two disparate-but-symbiotic flavors to meld and mellow.
*Makes 1 Quart
4 cups tightly packed grated carrots
1 tablespoon grated, peeled fresh ginger
3 teaspoons sea salt or pickling salt
§ IN A LARGE BOWL, mix the carrots, ginger, and salt together and set the bowl aside for 30 minutes. Using a wooden pounder or potato masher, pound the carrot mixture for 5 minutes so the vegetables release their juices. Place the contents of the bowl in a quart canning jar and press down firmly so the carrots are covered by juice. Add filtered water to just cover the carrots as needed. Leave 1 inch of headspace between the top of the juice and the top of the jar. Place a single sheet of paper towel over the jar and screw on the band that holds the jar’s metal lid. Set the jar on a warm kitchen counter for 5 days. Check the jar each day and remove any scum that rises; keeping the vegetables submerged will prevent any spoilage. Then cover the jar with a metal jar lid before placing it in the refrigerator, where it will keep for 3 to 4 weeks.