You can’t beat home-made ferments for their probiotic power, variety and taste and (low) cost. However, and it may sound obvious, if you’re buying a commercial product, please make sure it’s live and hasn’t been pasteurised!


Red cabbage: 1 large (finely shredded)
Red onions: 3 large (finely shredded)
Fresh ginger: 5 cm, or more to taste (peeled & sliced to fine match-sticks)
Red Jalapeños chillis: 3, or more to taste (with seeds, very finely sliced)
Garlic: 4 fat cloves (finely sliced)
Maldon salt (1 – 1.5 tablespoons – it should taste just a little too salty)
Whey: 1.5 tbsp (the liquid part from straining yoghurt – optional, but gets the ferment going)


Put all the above into a large bowl and bash it down with the end of a rolling pin to release the natural juices in the veg.

Then pack it as tightly as possible into a Kilner jar, pushing each layer down with the end of a ladle.

Top with filtered or mineral water until just covered. Leave for a minimum 1 week to ferment properly.

Will keep for months in the fridge – just pack down very time so the surface is covered with water to prevent mouldy growth.


SAUERKRAUT: White cabbage / white onions / salt / garlic / caraway seeds / celery seeds / dill / whole black pepper / mustard seeds / turmeric

BASIC KIMCHI: Red, or red + white cabbage / red onions / salt / garlic / chillis peppers / ginger / radishes / celery

CARROT & GINGER PICKLE: Carrots / ginger / salt + optional white onion / celery / cumin / caraway / chilli