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Celery Kvass with ginger, lime and cucumber

Kvass is a fermented beverage that comes from Russia. It makes a great probiotic that benefits the intestines. I love making kvass from red, chioggia and golden beets, all of which bring their own flavor. However, recently I have been experimenting with celery kvass, which has now captured my heart. The process of making them is almost the same. Celery kvass is definitely for those who prefer a more botanical and wild flavor, like myself.

Like beets, celery brings healing powers to the table. Celery cleanses the kidneys and liver, and contains a lot of vitamins and minerals. Some find it helpful for gout or migraines due to its cleansing properties.

If you are new to fermentation, please read and follow the instructions carefully. The best thing you can do to ensure your success, is to wash and sanitize everything thoroughly


5 stalks of celery, cleaned and chopped

zest of one lime (wash before grating)*

1/4 of a cucumber, washed and sliced

2" piece of ginger, washed sliced into matchsticks.

2 tsp sea salt**

1/2 gallon of filtered and de-chlorinated water***

1/2 gallon mason jar, washed the hot soapy water

pint size (8oz) mason jar with narrow mouth (you will use this as a weight in the top)


  1. The first step of any ferment is to wash your tools well. People have all different methods to do this. I like to wash everything that the ferment will touch (knife, cutting board, your hands, the jars and any bowls) with hot soapy water. I then boil a pot of water in my electric boiling and pour it over all the surfaces. Though some may say this is not as effective as oven sanitization, I find it works well for me. This step is important because it removes as much bacterial contamination from other sources as possible.

  2. The second is to wash all vegetables well. Then chop everything as directed.

  3. Put all vegetables into the half gallon jar (which should already be sanitized). Add the salt, and then fill until just to the base of the neck (leaving 1.5"-2" of space). Pop in the pine sized jar, empty and without a lid, into the top so that it floats like a boat. The water in the half gallon jar shouldn't overflow if you left enough room in the top, and it should come right up to the rim. The goal behind this step is to cover surface area where the vegetables could float and touch air, where they would grow mold. This method of covering also allow air created during fermentation to escape.

  4. Set this on the counter, away from sunlight and dust, for 5-14 days. Cover loosely with a clean towel if you have pets/ a dusty house. The longer you let it sit, the more novel flavor and probiotics will develop. Let it sit too long, though, and it will mold. You can taste the flavor by taking out the top jar and dipping in a sanitized spoon. Note that it is common for mold to grow on the surface: skim that off and discard it, and rinse the top jar with hot water.

  5. When satisfied with the flavor, pour it through a fine mesh metal strainer into another glass jar (pour boiling water over the strainer before using. See a pattern here?). You can also use clean and sterile cheesecloth for this step. The result should be a light green, cloudy liquid. Store that in the fridge, and keep in the fridge for up to two months. Kvass actually keeps in the fridge well, which is the reason our ancestors drank a lot more fermented beverages. However, if it is sealed without being opened for a while, the bacteria colony can change to anaerobic bacteria, spoiling the lot. You will know this has happened by smelling it. The nose knows! You can prevent this by opening it regularly and letting new air in.

Idea for a mocktail:

Combine ice, and equal parts of ginger ale and celery Kvass. Add a squeeze of lime if you like!

*Using lime with the whole peel makes the drink very bitter.

** It is important to use a high quality sea salt high in trace minerals, as the minerals in the salt are part of the medicine of this drink.

**Most tap water contains chlorine, which will inhibit the bacterial growth. You can remove the chlorine by letting it sit out overnight, or by boiling and then letting it cool.


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