Robbo and I are making sauerkraut. Sauerkraut is fermented cabbage. Sauerkraut is delicious. Obviously you can eat it as a stand alone side serving or top your tacos or your hot dogs!!! That’s The Best! Fermented foods are rich in probiotics … the good bacteria we need in our gut.
The benefits of probiotics deserves its own post! But super quick …. probiotics are the good bacteria we need in our gut. They help with digestion, but having healthy gut bacteria helps with weight loss, mood disorders, balancing hormones, heart disease, and on and on and on.
I think this is a pretty generic cabbage recipe. I’m sure there are 100’s of variations. But this is so easy!
1 head of cabbage
1 tablespoon of salt
1.5 teaspoon of caraway seeds (optional)
Cut cabbage into quarters. Use a sharp knife. Life is easier with sharp knives. Once it’s quartered, it’s easy to cut the core out. Chop / shred your cabbage. Add shredded cabbage to large mixing bowl. Add salt. Mash away. Like kneading dough. Water will start to show. “Cabbage juice”…. that’s what you want! Keep mashing until you have as much water extruded as you can. The salt is what helps draw all that water out. Add caraway seeds and do one more big mix. Then add to mason jars. I love wide mouth jars. Pack it in there. I mean really pack it in. Press with your fist or with a pestle. Pack it down. There should be water / juice enough to cover all the cabbage. You may need to add some (filtered) water to top it off. Leave about an inch breathing room at the top. Place jar in a dry / cool place … like a pantry and place it on top of a plate or casserole dish (just in case the fermenting gets messy). Allow for fermentation. Usually about 2 weeks.
At 2 weeks we will taste the sauerkraut and see what we think. It may need longer. Once you like how it tastes, refrigerate your sauerkraut to stop it from further fermentation. It will last a while …… I should probably tell you to eat within 3-6 mo, but in reality, we have had sauerkraut that is still edible in our fridge …. quite a while.
Fermentation is bacteria eating the sugar from the carbohydrates in the vegetables. This produces gas. Fermenting will make bubbles … have you ever seen a sourdough bread starter? It’s bubbly! That’s why you need a little space at the top of your mason jars and set them on a plate or dish.
I’ve read you should have a serving of fermented food at every meal … a side of sauerkraut or kimchi or kombucha or kimchi or whatever your heart desires.
We also made kimchi … see next story!!!
P.S. You can ferment pretty much any vegetable …or even home made fermented ketchup. We have a fermented “sriracha sauce.” Fermented salsa. Search home fermentation…