Sushi Ginger (Gari)

Made famous in sushi bars “gari” with its sweet heat acts as a palate cleanser. Go outside sushi box and serve it between bites of steamed rice or noodle dishes.

Bonus! The brine is a divine spicy sauce to add sparkle to crisp-steamed veggies and myriad other dishes.

Most commercial brands of gari are made of inferior ingredients and lack live culture. This recipe is uncooked, alive and remains long-term in the fridge.

Sushi Ginger (Gari) – Makes 1 Pint

Look for ginger that is plump, smooth-skinned, and shiny. Dry and withered pieces will
not work. 

Gari Ingredients - Maple Syrup

  • ginger, (7 oz., 1-1/2 cups), peeled, thinly sliced*
  • dry white wine, 1/4 cup
  • sugar, 2 tsp.
  • water, filtered,  1/4 cup
  • maple syrup, 1-1/2 TBS., or agave nectar
  • rice vinegar, 2 TBS.
  •  soy sauce,  1 TBS.

To elevate this recipe, source live cultured soy sauce, mirin (sweet rice wine), and brown rice vinegar along with organic ginger. It truly can become a daily superfood supplement.

DIRECTIONS: This is a secondary fermentation method where the liquid ingredients are already fermented and they slowly preserve the ginger indirectly. But you can also ferment the sliced ginger directly using a traditional lacto-fermentation with a fermentation kit of choice. If you do, then jump at step 4 to complete. Contact me if you would like more information.Ready to pack pickling vessel

  1. Peel the ginger and slice very thinly across the ginger fingers. Note: the success of gari is in the wafer thinness of each slice. See tool resource at bottom for a tool that really works!
  2. A little sliver of raw, red beet will color your ginger a little pink; the traditional color of gari
    Add a beet slice to bottom of a one pint, wide-mouth canning jar. Add sliced ginger, tamping lightly as you go all the way to the top.
  3. Add the brine to cover the ginger and right up to the lip of the jar. Seal and leave at room temperature for 4 days. Then refrigerate.

BONUS: Recently I tried this recipe on fresh turmeric, the powerful superfood cousin of ginger. It works beautifully!

il_570xN.1394638666_jd97Just like gari, turmeric will ferment—the taste is milder and more earthy than ginger. I grow my own ginger and turmeric, so it’s become a tradition to harvest and preserve them annually.

Now it’s easy to grab a few slices of cultured turmeric or ginger and chew my “medicine.” Science is finding lacto-fermentation powers up the nutrients found in the ginger family.


mandolin slicer - Kyocera

I use a mandoline slicer to ensure razor thin slices.
I like the “Kyocera Double Edged Mandolin Slicer,” and retails for about $20. Easy to locate using a web search. It is not a one-trick pony, this mandoline creates wafer thin veggies for many raw recipes.

Recipe adapted, original by Karen Bard

©2018 Bill Hettig,

One thought on “Sushi Ginger (Gari)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s