A Maize ‘n’ Salsa

Posted by Bill Hettig on 31st May 2015

A Maize ‘n’ Salsa

Let’s grab some fresh produce: a few ears of corn, some chiles, and fix us a pickled corn A Maize ‘n’ Salsa. Come taste the flavors of Mexico from the state of Sonora. You can use raw or cooked corn niblets. For a quick spice blend, find a mild chile powder; not the standard stuff. I like to peruse the penzeys.com spice catalog and find something special, like Arizona Dreaming, a blend of chiles, cocoa, and citrus notes. Corn along with other grains have a shorter pickle life than lacto-fermented vegetables. Plan on pickling and serving within a couple weeks span—as grains will make the brine more sour sooner.

Prep Time: 30 mins 
Jar Size: 1 quart


  • 1 LB. corn niblets (4-5 med. ears) or frozen corn niblets, thawed
  • 1 cup scallions (1/2 bunch), small dice, white and light green portions
  • ⅓ cup jalapeño chiles (2-4), some seeds and rib removed, small dice
  • ⅓ cup dried tomato halves, small dice
  • 1 lime zest & juice, 1 tsp. grated zest, 2 TBS. juice
  • 4-6 tsp. chili powder.
  • 2 TBS aged brine, from prior batch of fermented veggies
  • Brine: 2 cups spring water + 1 Tbsp. Celtic Sea Salt® or other premium brand

After 4-Day Fermentation

  • 2 TBS. olive oil,
  • 2 TBS. fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 tsp. honey (opt.), or sugar
  • pepper, fresh ground
  • hot sauce served at table


  1. In a large bowl combine corn niblets, scallions, jalapeños, and tomatoes. Toss with lime zest, lime juice, and chile powder.
  2. In a clean 1 quart jar, pack the mixture until about 2 inches from the jar lip.
  3. Make brine by dissolving salt in water (TIP: put room temperature water & salt into another jar, secure lid and shake vigorously).
  4. Pour brine over vegetables; gently wiggle jar to release all air bubbles. Continue filling until approximately ½ inch below the lip of the jar.
  5. Press brine overflow cup into jar until just level with jar rim. (TIP: you may want to do this with jar in your sink as some brine should spill over).
  6. Allow cup to float as you clean off veggie/seasoning debris from jar rim to ensure good seal.
  7. Twist on Perfect Pickler® lid until just hand snug.
  8. Pour tap water into airlock to the max line and gently twist into lid.
  9. Place in cool location (68-74 degrees) and wait patiently for 4 days!

Serving Suggestions: Mix with some leftover rice or barley and add other raw diced veggies to make a grain salad.