Sunday, March 17, 2013

Super Sauerkraut

It's finally done! Isn't it pretty?

I've made sauerkraut once before, using the "Three days on the counter in a mason jar" method, and it was good, but then I read the Sauerkraut Survivor series and realized I might not be getting as much probiotic bacteria as I thought.

So I started looking around for a better system, even going so far as to order a Pickle-Pro lid on Amazon (which I never did use, but I'm thinking it will be great for when I make apple cider vinegar this fall). But before my pickle-pro arrived in the mail, I found these clamp-top jars at my local Farm & Fleet store (which were what I really wanted in the first place), so I grabbed two, ran over to the food co-op and bought a head of organic red cabbage, and giddily drove home to make some kraut!

The actual recipe is so simple - just slice up your kraut, let the salt bring out the juices, and let it sit in the cupboard for a month (that's the hard part!)

Here are the more technical directions:

Super Sauerkraut
Quarter, core, and shred cabbage, discarding outer leaves. Put in a large bowl and sprinkle with 1 Tbsp sea salt (or ½ Tbsp sea salt plus ¼ cup leftover kraut juice from previous batch). Cover bowl with a tea towel and set aside. After about a half hour, stir, then recover and set aside for another half hour. Stir again; at this point it should be getting juicy (no pounding required - let the salt do the work for you!) Transfer cabbage to a sterilized fermenting jar. Press down firmly to remove any air gaps and pack cabbage tightly, leaving 1” head space (actually, according to this, you don't have to have the brine covering the cabbage if you use the clamp-top gasket jar). Attach cover according to jar directions and keep in a dark place at room temperature for four weeks. Best eaten 4-8 weeks after initial shredding. Refrigerate after opening.

Of course, you can do this with green cabbage to make a "normal" looking kraut, but I like using the red cabbage because it makes such a bright presentation.

Here's to homemade probiotics!


  1. Love, love, LOVE! Will have to do this...

    On a side note, is the jar from Fleet Farm glass? I've been looking for something like that, with a wide mouth, for our sourdough starter!

  2. Of course! You know I try not to use any plastic with my food. I don't know that I'd want the rubber gasket for sourdough, though.

    1. You wouldn't want the gasket. I was kind of thinking that it would be something that I could slip off, leaving air to leak into the jar. I'm running out of room in my "bacterial experiments" cupboard and am thinking of leaving the sourdough starter on the counter. But with our devil cats, I'd have to have a better lid on it than a coffee filter!