My Probiotic Love Life

durian_fermentLast week I posted up some model shots of my kitchen’s current lacto-ferments.

There was a bit of frustration on the part of some readers. I provided no recipes and am at a loss, because I have no recipes to give.

Fermentation is much different than cooking. It is temping to describe it as more akin to chemistry or science, and cooking is those things to.

I don’t think science is right either though; it is more romantic than that.

There it is. For me fermentation is romance.

Bubbly Kvass

Bubbly Kvass

I enter into a long term relationship with a ferment. High passion beginnings of chopping and spicing grow into a calmer and sedate snuggle.


My ferments and I check in daily, see how each other are doing, becoming closer and more intimate. How have we changed, could we be warmer? Cooler? Shall we take a seat in the sun?

Eventually, we become one… I eat it that is.


Recipes have stopped applying to my fermentation habit. I follow general guidelines and exploit opportunities.

Deals on rutabagas at the Farmer’s Market, a particularly beautiful radish, or a friend’s overwhelming onion harvest. These opportunities combine with my whims. Am I feeling spicy? Seeking some digestive solace in ginger or the cleansing properties of lemon? Maybe a pickle fan’s birthday coming up, or perhaps it is bratwurst season?


That last one is silly, it’s always bratwurst season.

I do have some helpful guide lines, one is the rule of 3 and 5.

5 pounds veggies corresponds to three tablespoons sea salt, These are tossed together in a bowl and left to sweat for a few hours, then packed into what ever vessel seems most appropriate.


Here is a new ferment I started this week with ratios ripe for rough replication:


Green Onion Carraway Kraut:


  • 3 head green cabbage
  • 3 bunches green onion
  • chopped fresh dill.


  • Lots of carraway, maybe about 4 tablespoons

Total Weight 3.2 pounds or 1.5 Kilograms

O bother, let the math begin.

3 TB salt/5 lb = 0.6 TB salt per pound, so 0.6 TB x 3.2 lb veggies in this new kraut = 1.92 TB salt… o lets just call it 2 TB shall we.

This method has served me well. I hope it might serve you, as you enter in the veggie dating scene.


It is O.K. to have multiple partners. Should a relationship turn sour do not stress there are plenty of fish in this briny sea.


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