I have always loved sour things and that includes sauerkraut. But the kraut of my youth was pickled and not lacto-fermented because they used vinegar to “preserve” it. As you know I’m going to focus on teaching you about the foods and processes to support your health and will leave the explanation of the science of things to others that can educate you about the why’s and how’s way more eloquently than I. So here is a great article written by Sally Fallon Morrell and Dr. Mary Enig at the Weston A. Price website about the fermentation process.
Fermented veggies are a wonderful accompaniment to any meal because they contain good bacteria (probiotic) that help your gut break down the food and assimilate the nutrients more easily, not to mention the nutritional benefits of the fermented foods themselves. I’ve recommended Bubbies to folks before but now I really want to encourage you to get in the kitchen and make your own kraut! It couldn’t be easier and I promise it will be a whole lot cheaper.
So give it a whirl…get the kids involved and look at it as a science experiment…a real teaching moment. Please write me and tell me about some of your favorite fermented veggie mixtures
Red Cabbage, Apple, Carrot Kraut
Yield: 2 quart jars
- 2 cups grated carrot (3-4 large carrots)
- 2 green apples – peeled, cored, grated (about 3 cups)
- 1 large head red cabbage, grated (about 8 cups)
- 2 tablespoons fine ground gray sea salt
- Using a food processor or box grater, grate the carrot, apples and cabbage and place in large stainless steel bowl.
- Sprinkle the sea salt all throughout the mixture, cover with a clean dish towel and let sit for 30 minutes, stir it again and let sit for another 30 minutes.
- Using the potato masher start mashing until you start to see liquid form in the bottom of the bowl, a good 10-15 minutes.
- Spoon the mixture evenly into 2 quart-sized jars. Then press down on the veggies with the back of a soup spoon until you see liquid/juice start to rise above the grated veggies. You may need to add a bit of filtered water to make sure the veggie mixture is completely covered with liquid since no air should be touching the veggies…it’s an anerobic process. Leave one inch of air space between the liquid and the top of the jar.
- Screw the lids on tightly and place them on a rimmed baking sheet because the liquid could start to rise and run out of the side of the jar.
- Put the veggies in a cabinet or the laundry room (not on the dryer) somewhere where it’s about 72 degrees. Leave them sitting for two-three days. Open one up and give it a try. You should see some little bubbles rising up to the top and it should have a good sour/fermented taste. Now place the jars in the fridge which will slow the fermenting process.
- Serve 2-4 tablespoons with each meal and feel the difference!
See photos below which should support my instructions above. Again, please don’t hesitate writing me with any questions!