The trend for pickling foods has seen a rise in popularity since lockdown, boosting veg sales at Waitrose.
Known for their gut health properties, pickled foods like onions, beetroot and gherkins have been a mainstay of British cuisine for decades. Additionally, fermented foods from around the world, including sauerkraut and kimchi also have their place in store cupboards across the UK.
Now, this method of preserving food has become a lockdown hobby for foodies.
Sales of white wine vinegar, regarded as the best vinegar to use for home pickling, have risen by 29 per cent year on year, the supermarket reported. Online searches on Waitrose.com for ‘pickling’ and ‘pickling vinegar’ have risen by 222 and 347 per cent year on year respectively, while the term ‘pickling spices’ has risen by 500 per cent.
According to the supermarket, 24 per cent of the population would like to improve their gut health and the probiotics found in fermented and pickled foods are seen as an important factor in supporting the digestive system.
Alions Oakervee, food editor at Waitrose, said: "Pickling isn’t just about preserving foods, although that is a wonderful benefit; vegetables and fruits will last a couple of weeks in pickling liquor in the fridge.
"Pickled ingredients add an unmistakable crunch, bite and acidity to all kinds of dishes - from curries to sandwiches. The sharp tang of vinegar lends itself to a myriad of different ingredients, and the scope to add flavour and texture to dishes with pickled fruit and vegetables is huge."