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Fermented Apple Salsa



Make this with the firmest apples you can find for a crisp fruit salsa that combines sweet, sour, and salty flavors. It makes a great side dish with curries, but is also terrific served as a salad in combination with lettuce or cucumbers (you won't need any dressing besides the apple salsa).   

  • Duration
  • Prep Time
  • 1 liter/1 quartServings


  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) filtered or non-chlorinated water
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 2 teaspoons kosher or medium grain sea salt
  • 1/2 cup (115 g) raisins
  • 1/4 cup (60 g) thinly sliced onion
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3 cups (680 g) finely chopped apples


1. Whisk the water, honey, apple cider vinegar, and salt until the honey and salt are completely dissolved. 

2. Lightly grind the coriander and caraway seeds with a mortar and pestle.

3. Coarsely chop the raisins (you can skip this step if you like, but I think the texture of the salsa is better if you take the time).

4. In a large bowl, mix together the apples, raisins, onion slices and all of the spices. Pack the combined ingredients into a clean glass quart jar.

5. Pour the brine over the other ingredients. The brine should completely cover the solid ingredients: if it doesn't, top off with a little filtered water.

6. Put a lid on the jar, but loosely (you want the gases that develop during fermentation to be able to escape). Put a small plate under the jar to catch any overflow that may occur during fermentation.

7. Leave the jar of apple salsa out at room temperature for 2 days. During that time, take the lid off at least once a day and look for signs of fermentation such as bubbles on the surface. You'll see these especially if you press gently on the food. Your nose should also be able to detect a clean, sour smell developing.

8. Once the apple salsa has been actively fermenting for at least 24 hours, transfer it to the refrigerator. You won't need the plate under the jar any longer because the cold storage temperature will slow down fermentation so much that there shouldn't be any overflow. Store the apple salsa on the top shelf of the main compartment, which has the coolest temperature within the refrigerator. This will help the apples keep their crunch longer. Wait at least a week longer before eating the salsa.