top of page
  • Clare Backhouse

fermenting for immunity

Here’s a recipe for kombucha, which is fermented sugary tea, and sauerkraut, or fermented cabbage. They are both a lot more delicious than they sound in my opinion!

Both will produce bacteria which are beneficial for gut health.

Scroll to the end for some useful fermenting resources.


To make a half-gallon / 2 litre batch:


Organic black tea, loose leaf or in teabags

Organic sugar

1 SCOBY (the jelly-like substance that does the fermenting: see below on sourcing this)

1 cup existing kombucha (eg bought stuff) or 1 cup apple cider vinegar


1. Make tea in a large saucepan with 1 Tablespoon loose tea OR 4 tea bags, ½ cup sugar

and 6-7 cups boiled water.

2. Take out the tea bags/leaves after 5-10 mins and let the tea cool completely.

3. Put the SCOBY into a large mason jar or similar

4. Add 1 cup starter kombucha from previous batch OR 1 cup apple cider vinegar

5. Add the cooled sugary tea mixture

6. Cover with a clean cloth or some clean kitchen paper and a rubber band.

7. Leave on the kitchen counter for a week, then taste it. If it’s not tangy and sour yet, leave for another 5 days or so. As with sauerkraut, the fermentation happens faster in a warm environment.

Second fermenting

This is where you give the kombucha a second chance to ferment, but without the SCOBY. Put the kombucha into flip-top bottles, about 3/5 full, and 1/5 of the bottle fruit juice, leaving 1/5 of the bottle unfilled. Put the flip cap on. Leave in the fridge for 1-3 days (letting out air if need be), until it is tangy.



1 medium cabbage, fresh and organic

2 Tbls sea salt

If possible: a tablespoon or two of whey (the water bit that rises to the top in kefir and yoghurt)


1. Sterilize all the bowls, spoons and containers you’re planning to use, with boiling water.

2. Peel off and set aside the two outer leaves of the washed cabbage

3. Core and shred the cabbage finely, then place in a large bowl.

4. Add the salt, then either pound the cabbage with a rolling pin, or mix the salt into the cabbage by squeezing it with your hands for about 10 minutes. It will become quite wet as water is drawn out from the cabbage.

5. Spoon it all into a large, wide-mouthed glass jar and press down the cabbage until the juices come up and over the top of the cabbage. If need be, add just a little extra salted water to ensure it’s covered.

6. Place the two cabbage leaves over the top of the shredded cabbage to ensure all the pieces are kept submerged under the cabbage leaves. Then put a weight on top, eg a glass jam jar filled with water.

7. Leave it on the kitchen counter, or in a gently warm airing cupboard, for 3-5 days. Then taste it. If it is tangy rather than salty, put the lid on and put it in the fridge. If it is still just salty, leave it out (just ensure the shredded cabbage remains submerged under the water).

Let me know if you try these recipes, and how you like the taste!

To your very best of health,


Clare Backhouse, dipION, Registered Nutritionist MBANT

Registered Nutritional Therapist CNHC


Every Good Thing, for information and starter kits:


bottom of page