Christmas Kraut


  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 650g red cabbage
  • 1 green apple, cored but skin on
  • 1½ teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • ½ sachet of Cutting Edge Cultures starter culture
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 orange, sliced into rounds
  • 1 radish, thinly sliced
  • 1½ cups filtered water



You will need a 1.5L jar with an airlock lid for this recipe.

Use hot water to wash the jar as well as all utensils being used.

Alternatively run the jar through the hot rinse cycle in the dishwasher without adding any detergent and wash all other parts by hand.

Place the cloves in a small piece of muslin, tie into a bundle with kitchen string and set aside. Shred the cabbage and apple in a food processor with a shredding attachment or use a mandolin or knife to chop by hand. Transfer the cabbage and apple together with the orange, allspice, cinnamon sticks and radish and gently mix in a large glass or stainless steel bowl. 

Set your cabbage mix aside covered with a plate while you prepare the Starter Culture by adding it to one cup of filtered water. Stir it well and once dissolved let it sit for 10 minutes to activate the bacteria.

Dissolve the salt in half a glass of filtered water before combining with the cabbage mix. Add the dissolved Starter Culture to your bowl and mix thoroughly.

Using a large spoon fill your jar with the mix ensuring that it is gently compressed between additions in order to remove any air pockets whilst ensuring there is liquid throughout your mix. Do not be tempted to pack it in too tightly as the pressure will build while it’s fermenting and cause your jar to overflow. Only fill to the shoulder of the jar. Place a clean folded outer leaf of cabbage over the mix and then top with the glass weight or a small shot glass. This will ensure that your ferment stays submerged in the liquid.

If you don’t have enough liquid to cover then add some more starter/brine solution or filtered water until you do and then close the lid and fill your airlock with water.

Cover the jar to block out the light with a tea towel and then allow it to ferment in a spot with a temperature of approximately 20 degrees Celsius (or 70 degrees Fahrenheit). Allow it to culture for up to 7 days. The warmer the weather, the shorter fermentation time required.

Once ready remove the glass weight and outer leaf of cabbage and place in the fridge to store and chill before eating.

To enhance flavour and improve digestibility you can keep curing your sauerkraut in the fridge.

Once opened, the kraut will last for up to 2 months in the fridge submerged in the liquid. If unopened, it will keep for up to 9 months in the fridge.

If you are new to eating cultured foods please start slowly with one teaspoon and gradually increase to 1 or 2 tablespoons with each meal to minimise any discomfort that could be caused by the rebalancing of your inner ecosystem. Cultured foods are meant to be enjoyed in small amounts as a condiment rather than a meal replacement due to their nutrient density and medicinal qualities – enjoy!