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Homemade sauerkraut

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I started fermenting this 2 1/2 weeks ago. Tasted today and it is perfect, lots of tang, not super salty. Shredded the cabbage, mixed with salt, let stand 24 hours then topped up with brine so it was submerged. I use this style crock(Company that made mine is no longer in business) http://www.harvestessentials.com/german-5-liter-fermenting-crock-pot.html Shredded cabbage layers with salt and smashed down to release the juices. Stashed in my dark pantry at 70 degrees.

 

Moved it to jars, topped off with the brine from the crock(it is alive with lactic bacteria and way better than a probiotic pill!) and put in my fridge at 36 degrees to slow the ferment way down. I need to get some corned beef and rye now and make some reubens!

 

post #2 of 10
Yay, MaryB. Those look great!

My most recent batch of kraut became kraut dogs, kraut and ribs, and (my favorite) Transylvanian Goulash. I let mine ferment about 4 weeks, though, before refrigerating.

The thought of a good Ruben has my mouth watering!!!
post #3 of 10

You both can send me some of that!  8^)

Best and I'm a foodie.   I know very little but the little that I know I want to know very well.

 

-T

Brot und Wein
(1 photos)
 
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Best and I'm a foodie.   I know very little but the little that I know I want to know very well.

 

-T

Brot und Wein
(1 photos)
 
Reply
post #4 of 10

Excellent job, Mary. That looks great.

And a good reminder for me to get this years batch going. I have a similar fermenting crock. 

I never liked sauerkraut until I had it at a local polish restaurant where they make their own. A completely different thing from commercial.

A friend of mine makes many different kinds, adding various vegetables and spices to each batch. It's quick, easy and quite delicious. 

post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by chefwriter View Post

.........................I never liked sauerkraut until I had it at a local polish restaurant where they make their own. A completely different thing from commercial.

A friend of mine makes many different kinds, adding various vegetables and spices to each batch. It's quick, easy and quite delicious. 

Uuuuuhhh, would that be "...Polish..."?

 

Could you please suggest a source for the various recipes for sauerkraut.

 

Best,

Terry Kokosenski

Best and I'm a foodie.   I know very little but the little that I know I want to know very well.

 

-T

Brot und Wein
(1 photos)
 
Reply

Best and I'm a foodie.   I know very little but the little that I know I want to know very well.

 

-T

Brot und Wein
(1 photos)
 
Reply
post #6 of 10

Kokpuffs you can start by reading my article here, on Chef Talk, about making your own Sauerkraut

 

 

Making Sauerkraut
By Pete Posted 1042 views 2 comments

 

You can find recipes all over the internet for making sauerkraut, but really, the most important ratios that you need to know are for your brine, if using one and salt to vegetable ratio.  For me, I use a brine made from 2 quarts of water and 3 tablespoons of kosher salt.  When making sauerkraut my salt to vegetable ratio is 3 tablespoons of kosher salt to 5 pounds of cabbage.  Yes, I know, to be more accurate I probably should be weighing my salt but so far I've never had an issue.  When making sauerkraut I usually make up a batch of brine just in case salting and pounding the cabbage doesn't yield enough liquid on its own, although it usually does.  If my cabbage is a little older (and thus a littler drier) or I've added some vegetables to the mix that aren't as water laden as cabbage I usually still stay with the same salt to vegetable ratio and end up adding a bit of brine to ensure that I have at least 1 inch of brine covering the vegetables.  In the past I've added beets, carrots and onions to the mix.  I've also added various other spices.  Over the years I've found that I like to make my sauerkraut clean (nothing else added-just cabbage and salt) and add spices when I am cooking it for final use.

 

Mary, maybe its that Texas heat, but I'm surprised that you were able to chill after only 2 1/2 weeks.  I usually don't get a good product until starting at about week 4 or 5 and even then the flavor is still pretty "fresh."  I usually ferment for around 7 weeks before it hits that sour note that I really like, even then it is still fresher tasting than anything you get at the store.

post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete View Post
Mary, maybe its that Texas heat, but I'm surprised that you were able to chill after only 2 1/2 weeks.  I usually don't get a good product until starting at about week 4 or 5 and even then the flavor is still pretty "fresh."  I usually ferment for around 7 weeks before it hits that sour note that I really like, even then it is still fresher tasting than anything you get at the store.


It's funny, I had the same thought, the last batch I made was here in SoCal earlier this year, but temps were rather hot, easily in the 80F inside my house during the day. And still I waited 6 to 7 weeks before getting the desired result. But maybe that's where we all differ, perhaps we're not all looking for the same end product.

 

@MaryB how do you get your sauerkraut to look so white? No matter what I try mine is always pale green. Well... hmmm interesting. I looked up some pics from my kraut to share them here and realized it looks the same color as yours! I'm fairly sure the "true" color was a little more green than what it looks like on my pics. Oh well I suppose that's not the most important part.

 

Hope you enjoy it, I'm sure you will! Here's my choucroute garnie:

 

 

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

Mary, nice job! Now lets make some German sausage.....

post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 

I think the color came from the variety of cabbage used. A local veggie grower uses it for people who want kraut. This had the perfect tang at 2 week, not super sour(and it will slowly keep fermenting in the fridge). I prefer mine a bit less on the sour scale...

post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryB View Post
 

I prefer mine a bit less on the sour scale...


Well anyway we're apparently not even preparing sauerkraut for the same final product so perhaps that also explains the difference? How do you use it, I wonder? You mentioned reuben sandwhiches, I don't think I've ever had one of those before. Is that raw sauerkraut, or do you first cook it? If you cook it, how?

 

I do what I believe is the classic treatment for choucroute garnie: I rinse it about 3 times with a lot of water, then cook it for hours in white wine. Before the rinsing, it would be way to salty and sour to eat. And finally I serve it with steamed potatoes and a lot of salty, fatty bacon, smoked ribs and sausages.... so it needs a fair amount of sourness to cut through all that salty fatty pork!! Although that's also achieved with the Riesling and/or beer you drink while eating it. ;)

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