Curtido Salvadoreno is a pickled cole-slaw with a spicy zip to it served in small side portions as a condiment.
It is crunchy, with a slightly sour, tart, spicy taste.
It is made of shredded cabbage, grated carrot, chopped onion (or scallion), vinegar and pepper flakes. Usually white or green cabbage is used, but a few recipes call for red.
You can buy it already made in jars; restaurants buy it in large jars.
It is served with food items such as pupusas.
A similar Curtido is also made in Nicaragua, where it is called “ensalada de repollo.” There, tomatoes are added, and lime juice is used instead of vinegar.
You shred 1/2 a cabbage and grate 1 carrot. Put in a large bowl, cover with boiling water, let stand 5 minutes, then drain.
Mix in white vinegar, a bit of salt, a small amount of fresh water, flavouring such as oregano and red pepper flakes, and the onion. Put in fridge and chill at least 4 hours. Best in fact made a day ahead. Can be stored in fridge for up to a week; stir occasionally if you do.
Some people add a pinch of sugar and a bit of oil. Some add a bit of lemon juice.
“Curtido” (from the Spanish encurtir, “to pickle”.)