Many people would probably say that “tasty sauerkraut” is an oxymoron. With its sour and or salty taste sauerkraut can take some getting used to. A little while ago I had dinner with a friend who makes her own sauerkraut and eats it with every meal. I had some and found that this variety was not as sour as others and I actually really enjoyed the tart, fresh, crisp taste of it. Turns out she makes it herself and it is really easy to do!
So a couple weeks ago, my mom and I went over to our friend Anna’s house to learn how to make it. We had a great time in the process. There are lots of different combinations of veggies you can use. Anna made cabbage with jalapeno peppers. The recipe my mom and I did is below, along with some photos and instructions on how you can make sauerkraut too. Enjoy!
– Food processor with a grater
– Canning jars that seal tightly
– 1 or 2 very large bowls (or a clean bucket)
– 1 large white cabbage
– 1 large red cabbage
– 4 huge carrots
– 3 red beets
– 3 golden beets
– 2 packets of Veggie Culture Starter (Body Ecology Diet website sells these)
- Peel off 4 – 5 leaves of the cabbages. Set aside to use later.
- Cut ingredients into chunks that will fit into your food processor.
- Put the grater tool on your food processor and grate all veggie ingredients, putting the grated veggies into the bowls as you go.
- Sterilize jars by pouring hot water over them. Drain.
- Blend 1/2 cup of the grated veggies with ~2 cup water and 2 packet of the veggie culture starter.
- Pour over the veggies and mix together to lightly coat everything with the liquid.
- Press grated veggie mixture into the empty jars using a wooden spoon to make sure it gets packed in as tightly as possible.
- Roll up the cabbage leaves you had set aside and press them into the tops of the jars. This will help keep the grated veggies pressed down.
- Wipe the tops clean and then put the lids on tight.
The sauerkraut will need at least a week to ferment. It should start to bubble and may even leak/drip out. It’s helpful to keep it in a cooler or large bucket to contain both the juices and the smell. It’s a bit stinky. 🙂 The longer you let it ferment, the more sour it will taste. After a week or so, put the jars in the refrigerator to slow down the fermentation process. Enjoy daily if you choose or even with each meal. Personally I have found it helpful to gradually increase the amount I eat. Keep in mind that when you first start, you may experience some gaseousness or bloating. The sauerkraut is helping your body kill off bad bacteria, which is why you are having those symptoms. It should get better over time. Happy to try to answer any questions that come up, so feel free to contact me.