This Weekend my Wife and I hit up the Aberfoyle Antique Market for some find. I was looking for a crock and my Wife was looking for a kitchen cabinet of sorts. Well we hit both marks perfect and now with my new 6 Gallon Medalta crock I could finally start making my own sauerkraut. The process is really quite simple and straight forward. Cut up cabbage mix it with a bit of salt and let it ferment naturally in its own juices. The recipe I found was from a blog called "Wild Fermentation" . It is written by Sandor Katz, a culinary author, DIY food activist.
Any how for my recipe I used some carrots mixed with the cabbage for some extra sweetness. To prepare the sauerkraut first you must chop the cabbage as fine or as course as you would like. When you place a big handful of cabbage in the crock you just sprinkle on some salt, which draw the water out of the cabbage and make a brine to ferment the cabbage into sauerkraut.
Once you have a bunch of cabbage in the crock you pack it down with your fist, this make sure its tight withing the crock and helps pound out some water. At this point you just keep repeating these steps with the cabbage, carrots, and salt. Layer after layer and punch/pound.
In this recipe I used about 7 pounds of cabbage and a bag of carrots and 4 tablespoons of salt. I think I was a little over zealous with a 6 gallon crock, or I need to make allot more sauerkraut.
One you are all done, you put a glass or ceramic plate on top if the cabbage along with a weight of sorts. I used a huge mason jar willed with water to keep the plate down. From what I was reading if you do not keep the plate on top the fermentation process can expand the cabbage and make it overflow, thought I think I got enough room in the crock.
And there you have it; sauerkraut in the making. Every couple days remove the plate and give it a rinse, and withing 3 or 4 days you should start to taste the tangy-ness of the brine. and within 2-4 weeks you will have some killer kraut. Again check out "Wild Fermentation" for more info on the process and the exact steps to making sauerkraut. I will keep you updated on the process over the next couple weeks, and If any of the readers have some tips please post in the comments below and let us know.