I’ve been doing lots of fermenting lately and I’ll be sharing recipes on my site over the coming weeks…But in the meantime, you can read up on why it’s so good for you here. Fermented daikon is one of my favourite ferments. Daikon is a big white radish often found grated raw on Japanese meals; you can find them at Asian grocers, but I’ve also seen them at big supermarkets, too.

Pickled daikon
Fermented daikon on the left there. On the right, my fermented sauerkraut.

This ferment is an easy one to kick off with if you’re wanting to give fermenting a try. It has a bunch of bonuses: it uses an unsexy (and cheap) vegetable; it’s super simple to make (it doesn’t require too much pounding; other veggies can require a lot!); is pretty foolproof; and is super tangy.

homemade fermented daikon

  • 1.5kg of daikon
  • 2 tablespoons of sea salt
  • 4 tablespoons of whey (here’s my directions for making whey; if you don’t have any, use an extra tablespoon of salt)

Grate the daikon (I use a blender with a grater attachment for speed and ease). Make sure you don’t use any “woody” bits…they make the pickle, well, wooden. Combine with the whey and salt in a bowl and pound gently with a wooden device (a meat hammer or a pestle) to release the juice. Place in a small mason jar and press down with the hammer so the juices rise to the surface. DON’T fill to brim because it will expand. I learned this the hard way. Leave at room temperature for a few days (2-3, less if warm weather), then refrigerate. The ferment gets better with age!

Screen Shot 2014-02-07 at 4.11.09 PM
I love to eat it:

* rolled up with some nori sheets, with avocado and salmon and spinach leaves with a little homemade mayonaisse.

* tossed through any kind of salad. It provides a lovely tang.

* as condiment with pretty much any meat dish.

* tossed through any kind of Asian stir-fry.

You’ll find a stack of fermenting recipes in my new print book, I Quit Sugar For Life – available for pre-order here (order now and get the I Quit Sugar Chocolate Cookbook FREE!).

Here’s 22 tips and tricks on fermenting.

If you’re keen to ferment other veggies, go here.

Here’s my recipe for ginger-ade soda.

If you’d like to make cream cheese, here’s my homemade recipe. It’s also the recipe for making the whey.

And here’s five other things to do with whey.

The I Quit Sugar team and I will be at a fermenting workshop on February 15 and we’ll be reporting back on fermented drinks, so stay tuned! Come join us if you’re free this weekend in Sydney!

Have your say, leave a comment.

  • Amy

    I love this idea, but have no idea what to eat it with. Assuming it would be a condiment, but on what? Anyone have any ideas? Thanks!

    • Yep, a condiment with any kind of salad, meat dishes. Great made into a nori roll with some salmon and avocado and spinach leaves.

  • Lauren

    Do you just get the whey from straining yoghurt? Is that what you’d use? Thanks

  • Hi Sarah,
    Do you know much about fermenting in relation to a low fodmap diet? I have IBS that is very touchy and for the most part I stay clear of foods with high FODMAPS, I’m assuming it would be ok to ferment foods that are on the ‘allowed’ list eg foods that I can tolerate.. I recently read (I think it was something you wrote) that fermented food can replace a good probiotic

  • Leonie

    Why do we need to use whey? When i have fermented cabbage it is just cabbage, water and salt and 3 days in the bottom of my hot pantry in Brisbane in Summer?

  • Oh I do wish I lived in Sydney! I’m considering a move just to have the chance to see you and participate in these workshops!!!!

  • DudeWhere’sMyBacon

    hi Sarah, could you use the whey that sits on the top of yogurt?

  • Claire

    And so easy to grow!! I grew heaps of it this summer and had no idea what to do with it all!! I should have read this earlier 🙂 always next year 🙂

  • Vicki

    Just diving in to fermenting….thank you so much for your site. I am learning a lot but right now have a question; can I use iodized sea salt? (that is what I have in my pantry)

  • disqus_LQmjCZP25F

    Why so much salt? Is it essential to making this ferment?