Everyone wants probiotics these days - and you can go buy pills and prepared stuff in fancy “gourmet” stores for $$$, or make 'em for cheeeeeep at home.
However, there are cheap and easy ways to make lacto fermented cabbage (true sauerkraut), and pickle almost any vegetables. All one needs is an airtight but breathable jar - I use the Fido borromeo jars - the standrad glass jars with wire clamped lids. These jars have a one way breathable lid - it lets air out, but does not let air in. This feature is essential since the fermentation needs to be anerobic.
These true probiotic fermented pickles are loaded with probiotics and can repopulate your gut bacteria, prevent stomach upset and taste fantastic. The “lacto” in “lacto-fermentation”, comes from “lactobacillus” - not lactose
Cabbage and 4% kosher salt by weight. a 3 liter Fido jar will easily fit about 5 pounds of cabbage. Optional items: a few cloves of garlic, a few hot peppers, few sprigs of fresh dill, red cabbage, few tablespoons of shredded carrot, etc…
Method: shred the cabbage. mix in the salt. the cabbage should start sweating. now stuff the cabbage into the jar, mushing it down as best you can with your fist. My fist doesnt fit through the top opening, so my wife does the mushing. As you push the cabbage down, it will yield enough water that you dont need to add any extra water. Close the lid. set aside for 4 weeks. within a day or two, the fermentation starts in earnest, and the jar may overflow as the CO2 forms pockets and raises the volume of the contents. dont be tempted to open the jar and pour the fluids back in.
After 4 weeks, open and taste your yummy sauerkraut, and then put it in your fridge to preserve. Be careful to start with a small quantity, lest you unleash growling bears in your belly! If this is the first time you are having this super probiotic - be sure to be home or otherwise near the bathroom.
Lacto fermented pickles:
dill cucumbers, peppers etc… with these you add 4% (by weight) salt to water to make brine and add to a jar full of cucmbers. add one tea bag. close and put aside for 2 weeks. water will get cloudy - thats OK!.
All the sour taste comes from the fermentation process. the only ingredients are salt and vegetables.