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fermenting sauerkraut question about jars

post #1 of 9
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I am looking at buying some jars for making sauerkraut at home. I planned to use mason jars but read about how they arent really airtight which can cause a problem with the LAB lactic acid bacteria.

 

So I was lead to look into fido jars, by bormioli rocco. However, i've read that while these are much more air tight, that the off gasing of the co2 can be problematic, particullary with the jar possibly shattering. With this it is recommended that you 'burp' the jars daily.

 

The other option would be to purchase a more expensive clay vessel, or to get something with an airlock that keeps air out but also lets c02 out.

 

These jars with airlocks, there is one company selling them officially, are pricy and they appear to be just bormiolo rocco jars drilled and inserted an airlock.

 

Does anyone here do any pickeling, particually fermentation stuff? Sauces, kraut, etc? Any comments or suggestions would be awesome. I am on the verge of just getting some of the rocco fido jars.

post #2 of 9
You don't really need any fancy equipment.
I made sauerkraut in a plastic (foodgrade) bucket.
The first part of the process requires air (oxygen) to get everything started, after that you want to exclude oxygen.
You can do this with a waterlock or by closing the jar/bucket and releasing the carbon dioxide every so often.
I use a plastic bag with brine solution to keep the cabbage down and to create a simple water lock.

Good luck, homemade sauerkraut is nice,!

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post #3 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobtheman View Post
 

I am looking at buying some jars for making sauerkraut at home. I planned to use mason jars but read about how they arent really airtight which can cause a problem with the LAB lactic acid bacteria.


I use a large mason jar to ferment my kraut for 6 to 10 weeks. I never want my jars to be airtight, I want the gas created by the fermentation to be able to escape. I just place a towel at the top of the jar so that dust cannot enter but gas can escape. 

 

These are more or less the instructions I'm following: http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-homemade-sauerkraut-in-a-mason-jar-193124

 

This is my choucroute garnie: 

Choucroute garnie!
started on 10/28/15 last post 11/01/15 at 9:56am 8 replies 224 views
post #4 of 9

CO2 is heavier than air so an active fermentation is always pushing the oxygen out of the jar.

 

You can take a standard wide mouth 1/2 gallon mason jar with lid and band and drill the lid for a stopper http://www.northernbrewer.com/no-2-drilled-stopper

 

then buy this airlock

 

http://www.northernbrewer.com/three-piece-airlock

 

And for under $4 you have a fancy sealed fermenter!

post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryB View Post
 

then buy this airlock


You can if you want to but there's really no need to buy anything to start fermenting sauerkraut. I feel like we tend to buy too many kitchen tools and we tend to think that new techniques require new tools, but that's not always the case. I don't think the Romans had an airlock on their sauerkraut jars.  :) 

post #6 of 9
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post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by butzy View Post

You don't really need any fancy equipment.
I made sauerkraut in a plastic (foodgrade) bucket.
The first part of the process requires air (oxygen) to get everything started, after that you want to exclude oxygen.
You can do this with a waterlock or by closing the jar/bucket and releasing the carbon dioxide every so often.
I use a plastic bag with brine solution to keep the cabbage down and to create a simple water lock.

Good luck, homemade sauerkraut is nice,!

This is basically how I do sauerkraut.  I then put it in canning jars and hot pack it..

post #8 of 9

Well I have 2 Nik Schmitt Fermentation Crocks http://wisementrading.com/food-preserving/fermentation-pickling/nik-schmitt-fermentation-crocks/ I use, but the airlock method is easy and cheap and for a beginner it might instill some confidence!

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by French Fries View Post
 


You can if you want to but there's really no need to buy anything to start fermenting sauerkraut. I feel like we tend to buy too many kitchen tools and we tend to think that new techniques require new tools, but that's not always the case. I don't think the Romans had an airlock on their sauerkraut jars.  :) 

post #9 of 9

I have a fermentation crock and I absolutely love it, but I have made, and still continue to make, fermented foods in canning jars also.  When I first started out making sauerkraut I was making large batches in 5 gallon plastic pails.  As others have said I used a large bag, filled with brine to keep the kraut down, below the level of the brine, and covered with a towel to prevent dust and debris from falling in, and I never had a problem.  Just need to, occasionally, wipe down the mold that can grow up along the sides and skim some surface mold from the top of the brine, both are regular occurrences that usually don't present a problem unless you ignore it.  I've since switched to my fermentation crock for making sauerkraut.  It makes it easier but it is in no way necessary.  I still usually make my Kosher Dill Pickles in 1 quart and 1/2 gallon canning jars.  Just make sure that your cukes are submerged beneath your brine.  I place the lids on them and give them just a quarter turn.  This loosely secures the lids but gives enough play so that the gas created during fermentation can escape.  I, generally, prefer my koshers as half-sours so I only ferment them for 3-8 days.  Then 24 hours in the fridge before I tighten the lids down.  My brother, on the other hand, prefers full sours so he will let his pickles ferment for weeks before moving to the fridge for storage.  You don't need a lot of equipment to get into fermentation.  Give it a try with what you have.  Just remember; everything needs to be well sanitized before you start, but make sure that after you sanitize you rinse everything really well, or use heat sanitizing as opposed to chemical sanitizing.  Any chemical reside left can hinder the development of the microbes that you are trying to grow.

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