Pickled cauliflower, especially when lacto fermented, is one of the tastiest and healthiest snacks in our book.
It also helps with weight control – see bottom of the post for more information.
We pickle florets monthly and love to use carnival cauliflower – the purple, green and orange varieties, for their higher nutritional content, slightly nuttier and sweeter flavor and of course – their vibrant look.
We discuss two pickling methods in this post.
Lacto Fermented Cauliflower
This is the method we prefer both flavor wise and on account of its beneficial impact on gut health and feeling of well-being. Besides, it is really easy.
All you need is the cauliflower itself, garlic, salt, water and mason jars.
NOTE: Garlic is a prebiotic that helps the lacto bacteria naturally found on the skin of the cauliflower thrive during fermentation. It also flavors the pickled cauliflower.
To start bring filtered water to a boil and dissolve salt in it.
While this simple brine solution is cooling down thoroughly rinse the cauliflower heads and using a sharp small knife cut them into florets.
Stuff the florets into jars and place the occasional garlic clove as you go – near the bottom, in the middle, on top. We slice bigger cloves into halves or even quarters.
TIP: Use sterilized wide mouth quart jars for best results.
Fill each jar with brine all the way to the top. Close the lids and leave the jars out on a counter at room temperature.
Fermentation will be in full swing as soon as twelve hours later and you will need to ‘burp’ the jars by opening the lids and letting the carbon dioxide produced by the lacto bacteria escape.
The brine will continue to bubble up even after you have opened the jar.
After two or three days you can taste the florets and if satisfied with the developed flavor and texture – move the jars to your fridge. Fermentation will continue at a very slow pace. The acidic flavor will intensify.
If using tri-colored cauliflower there will be slight discoloration over time in result of the lacto frementation.
Refrigerator Pickled Cauliflower
If you would rather make vinegar based pickled cauliflower we’ve included a recipe below.
NOTE: The acetic acid in this pickling method interferes with the successions of lacto bacteria at work and may reduce the associated health benefits.
For this method in addition to the garlic, salt and water you will need vinegar, sugar and spices.
Prepare and place the carnival cauliflower florets in jars just as described above. Instead of the simple salt brine pour the vinegar based solution as per the recipe.
Prepare gut health beneficial lacto fermented cauliflower or vinegar refrigerator pickled cauliflower in no time.
- 3 heads cauliflower, medium sized, purple, green and orange carnival cauliflower is especially delicious
- 5 cloves garlic, large, peeled, halved or quartered
- 2 quarts water preferably filtered
- 3 tbsp sea salt (may increase to 4 tbsp if you prefer very salty cauliflower)
- 3 heads cauliflower same as above
- 5 cloves garlic same as above
- 2 quarts water same as above
- 3 tbsp sea salt same as above
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 cup vinegar apple cider is a good choice
- 1 tsp each of your choice of peppercorns, coriander seeds, celery seeds, mustard seeds
Bring the water to boil, dissolve the salt and let it cool down completely.
Thoroughly rinse the cauliflower heads, cut in florets and arrange into wide mouth quart sized mason jars. Place garlic in between florets at bottom, middle and top of each jar.
Fill each jar with cold brine solution and place the lids.* Leave at room temperature and open the lids every twelve hours to let carbon dioxide escape. Taste after 2-3 days and if satisfied with the acidity levels and flavor move to refrigerator. Enjoy for up to 3-4 weeks.
Bring the water to a boil and add the salt, vinegar, sugar and your choice of spice(s). Lower the heat and let simmer for 5 minutes.
Pack the cauliflower florets and garlic as described above and pour the hot vinegar solution over them.
Let the jars cool down to room temperature, close the lids and refrigerate. Taste in 2-3 days and enjoy for up to two weeks.
*You may need to press down on the florets a couple of times to accommodate more of them. Be sure brine reaches all the way to the top of jar.
Top Reasons to Consume Lacto Fermented Cauliflower Over Vinegar Pickled Cauliflower
- Foods fermented with lactic acid provide glycemic control and therefore can reduce blood sugar spikes. Based on personal experience, we can confirm that the after effects of consuming very sweet, high alcohol beers such as Belgian strong ales etc. are subdued by first eating a couple of lacto fermented cauliflower florets. Or spoonfuls of plain yogurt or other fermented food for that matter.
- Weight loss is commonly associated with the consumption of lacto feremented foods. We regard them as one of our best weapons against gaining weight while enjoying variety of craft beer styles.
You May Also Like