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Sauerkraut

Yields 2 x 1000 ml jars

This recipe pickles the cabbage by way of lactic fermentation. There is no vinegar and no cooking involved. The cabbage is cured and salted and pounded into jars then left to ferment with natural yeast and bacteria. The fermentation will result in a reduced PH (increased acid) and in turn kill all the harmful bacteria. I always have a brine made with filtered water to add to the jars as I rarely get enough moisture drawn from the cabbage to keep it submerged.

WHAT YOU NEED:

    1 whole large green cabbage
    sea salt
    500 g filtered water
    15 g additional sea salt

WHAT YOU DO:

  1. Peel the outside leaves of the cabbage, cut into quarters and remove the core. Remove one leaf of cabbage and cut 4 circles the diameter of the jars you are using. Slice very thinly with a clean knife on a clean cutting board. Weigh the cabbage and measure 2% natural sea salt. For example, if the shredded cabbage weighs 1000g, you would use 20 g of salt. In a bowl, mix the salt into the cabbage and mash with clean hands until it starts to sweat.
  2. Let the cabbage sit while you weigh out the water and additional salt for the brine. Add the salt to the water and stir until dissolved.
  3. Pound the cabbage as compact as possible into clean, wide mouth, 1 L jars. Place the circular cabbage on top and top with the brine. Place a weight on top of the cabbage to keep it submerged. I find that a smaller, sanitized jar filled with water works well.
  4. Cover with a cloth and leave somewhere cool and dark (I find about 18-20 celcius is best). The fermentation process should take 1-2 weeks. Every few days push down the weights to release any carbon dioxide build up.
  5. When the cabbage is acidic, it’s done! Remove the weight and skim off any (harmless) mold that is on the surface. Put a lid on the jar, not too tight, and place in the fridge. The sauerkraut will last like this indefinitely, but it will continue to ferment and get more acidic very slowly. It will also lose its crunch over time.