1. Take a red cabbage, cut off the coarse outer leaves and shred it finely, leaving out the core.
2. Spread it on a large meat dish and salt it well. Leave it for 24 hours.
3. Next day wash it and put it in jars.
4. Cover it with pickling vinegar.
5. Leave it for at least one week before eating it.
to make homemade spicing vinegar
1. Add to 1 litre of vinegar, 5-10g of each of the following whole spices: cloves, allspice, cinnamon, white peppercorns, ginger. The smaller quantity will be enough for a mild pickle but for strongly flavoured ones such as onion, the full quantity may be used.
2. Put the spices in a folded cloth and beat them lightly with a rolling-pin to release their flavour.
3. Put the bruised spices into the vinegar and seal the bottle.
4. It may be more convenient to add a double or treble quantity of spices and dilute later with more vinegar, but label the container accordingly if this is done.
5. If time allows, leave the spices in the well-sealed bottle of vinegar for 2 months, shaking daily for the first month.
6. Strain out the spices carefully and re-bottle the vinegar.
to make quick spicing vinegar
1. Place the spices and vinegar in a heatproof bowl and cover with a plate.
2. Stand the bowl in a saucepan of cold water, bring the water gently to the boil and draw the pan off the heat.
3. Leave for 2 hours, taking care not to move the plate or flavour will be lost.
4. Strain the vinegar and, if not required immediately, return to the bottle and seal.