This is the handy, printable version of the recipe. If you would like more details, tips, + tricks, visit our website at trellisandcompany.com.
- watercress enough to fill a quart mason jar 3/4 full
- 1 quart non-chlorinated water
- chilies whole or flaked, dried or fresh
- 1 wide mouth quart jar
- Trellis + Co. fermentation lids and PickleHelix springs
Bring the water and salt to a boil. Set aside and allow to cool at room temperature.
Finely chop all leaves with a knife. A food processor tends to bruise the leaves and the final product could have a less than pleasant pasty texture—but again, feel free to experiment!
Mix chilies, garlic and chopped leaves in a big bowl, then use a funnel to aid the transfer into a quart jar. Use a fork to mash the mixture down as the jar is filling.
Place a Pickle Helix spring on top of the greens, and then pour over the cooled, salted water until the greens are fully submerged, leaving about 1 1/2" of air space at the top. Compress the spring and tightly screw down a Trellis + Co airlock lid to hold the spring in place. Store at room temperature placed away from direct sunlight.
After three to five days, bubbles should begin to form—this is a sign that beneficial microbes are beginning to work their fermentation magic. After five days, open the jar and give everything a good sniff. There should be a sour odor, the next sign that resident microbes are working to lower the jars' PH.
Feel free to remove the spring and use a clean spoon to have a taste test. The spice of the watercress will have mostly vanished. The spice of the chilies can become stronger at first and then mellow with time. After ten days it should have a fairly sour flavor and can be refrigerated. More chilies can be added at any time in the process.