Makes 1ltr Jar
1 ltr water
4 tbsp sea salt
1 firm cabbage
1 mooli (daikon)
1 small onion
2 garlic cloves
5 cm-piece fresh ginger
Up to 1 tbsp cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes (I use closer to ½ tsp)
1 tbsp sea salt (optional)
1. Mix together the water and salt until the salt dissolves.
2. Coarsely chop the cabbage. Peel the carrots and mooli and make long ribbons using a vegetable peeler.
3. Put the vegetables in a large bowl and cover in the salted brine.
4. Soak for 8-24 hours, making sure the vegetables are completely covered with the liquid and put a plate on top of them to weigh the mixture down.
5. Peel and dice the onion, garlic, ginger and shallots, then put the onion, garlic and ginger into a food processor or a pestle and mortar and blend/bash into a paste.
6. Put the paste into a bowl and stir through the chilli flakes and shallots.
7. Drain the vegetables, reserving some of the brine. Taste the vegetables for saltiness. If they are too salty, rinse them with cold water; if they are not salty enough, mix through some extra sea salt.
8. Combine the vegetables with the paste, mixing them well to ensure that they are evenly coated.
9. Gently squeeze the vegetables with your hands. This bruises the cell walls and helps release their juices.
10. Pack the mixture tightly into the bottom of a 2.5 - 3 ltr glass jar or ceramic pot, gently pushing down with your fist to release more juice until it is submerged in its own liquid. If necessary add some of the reserved brine just to cover.
11. Scrape down and clean the inside of the jar with a spatula then weigh the mixture down.
12. Cover the jar with a muslin square or tea towel so it can breathe, and secure.
13. Leave to ferment in a warm place at around 20-25°C, If it’s cooler then it will just take longer.
14. Check and taste daily, making sure the vegetables are always submerged in the brine. Depending on your taste and the room temperature, this can take around 3-14 days. It’s ready when it tastes sour and tangy.
15. Pack tightly into warm, dry sterilised jar leaving a 5mm gap between the top of the vegetables and the rim and seal.
Keeps for up to 6-8 months unopened in a cool, dark cupboard. Once opened, keep in the fridge and eat within 4-6 weeks.