sauerkraut from our cabbage
Finally we are getting a pretty good crop of cabbage. The green cabbage seems to be fairing better than the purple cabbage but I am still hoping we'll get a crop of that too.
We've been making a lot of different coleslaws and it was time to try something different. WE both love fermented foods and they are so good for you, so I thought I'd try making my own fermented cabbage - better known as sauerkraut. I've not made it before as we've not been able to beat the bugs to the cabbage till this year.
The word - Sauerkraut is German for sour cabbage. Sauerkraut is a finely chopped cabbage fermented with lactobacillus bacteria. The sugars in the cabbage are thereby converted into lactic acid and serve as a preservative. Although a German term there are many articles on where it originated from. Some stating China but I think that would be more like a kimchi with a lot more ingredients than a traditional kraut. As the cabbage ferments the textures and flavors form giving this unique jar of flavor its yumminess!..
you can ferment entire heads of cabbage however, since this is my first time I've chosen the chop and add the brine. It takes between two weeks and three weeks for the cabbage to ferment on the shelf in a draft free area maintaining a temp of around 70 degrees. So I'll check back with a report after its done!.... Below is the recipe I used.. Its basic, simple and easy!
3 tbs canning salt (or you can use sea salt also)
one nice head of cabbage chopped to your liking
water to cover the cabbage in a jar.
any spices you might like such as garlic, caraway seeds, ect.
Chop the cabbage in a glass bowl and add the salt.. Smash up the cabbage using a wooden spoon to help the cabbage start to break down and release moisture. about 10 minutes of this will do.
Pack a canning jar or large vessel making sure to remove all air bubbles while adding water to cover the salt cabbage mixture. You will need to weight down the cabbage (it will have a tendency to float and you want it all under the water). I used a plastic sealable bag filled with water and pushed it down into the jar pressing the cabbage to the bottom. Seal the bottle with a coffee filter and rubber band or fine cloth to keep out any unwanted .Stick it in your pantry... THATS it... Now we wait!..