I’ve done my research. I know how important our gut health is, and how easy it is to damage it. After having my children, I knew I had to actively support our microbiome in order to boost the immune system, to overcome allergies, digestive issues, and neurological disorders. But how do I do this with an empty budget? Simple, home ferments! Fermenting foods not only increases that ingredient’s nutritional composition, but provides many strains of beneficial bacteria, yeasts, and enzymes, and at higher numbers, than any probiotic on the market. It is also significantly cheaper. So to help you support you and your family’s health, I have taped a how to video with the written recipe on a basic and delicious ferment, sauerkraut! Enjoy!
1 Head of Cabbage
1 Large Carrot
3 Cloves Garlic
2 Tsp Sea Salt
1/2 tsp Mustard Seed (optional)
1/2 tsp Coriander Seed (optional)
Filtered water to fill
Step 1-Shred Veggies
Shred the cabbage and carrot to desired size (the larger the piece, the crunchier it is), and crush the garlic. Add to a large glass bowl.
(Reserve one outer leaf of the cabbage for covering the kraut at the end)
Cover the vegetables in the glass mixing bowl with the 2 tsp sea salt and massage thoroughly until liquid freely drains from squeezed veggies.
Step 3-Pack and Cover
Add the rest of the seasonings and pack into a half gallon jar, or two quart jars. Tamp down tightly with your hands or a wooden spoon. If there is not a clear layer of brine over the vegetables, add filtered, not chlorinated, water to about one inch above the vegetables. Weigh down the kraut with a glass weight. If that does not completely weigh all the veggies down, place the reserved cabbage leaf inside the jar with a weight on top, or the edges folded firmly down along the jar walls so that no veggies float to the top of the brine. Cover the jar(s) with an airlock, silicone with escape valve, or plain mason jar lid. Place it in a cool location out of direct sunlight for 4 days, checking for pressure, and refrigerate.
Whatever jars you do use, make sure not to pack to the brim. As your ferment sits, the bacteria release gasses that will cause pressure inside of the jar, potentially causing an explosion if you are not using the silicone lid in my video or an airlock. A standard mason jar lid will have to be loosely closed and routinely “burped” (opened enough to let excess gas escape) to prevent pressure buildup.
My kids love kraut, but it took a couple of times to sway them. Now I have to stop them from overeating it! If they see you enjoy it, they are way more likely to accept such a different (in American standards) kind of food. Start small also for gut reasons. As you eat good bacteria, it starts causing die off of the bad bacteria. As they die, they release toxins that cause digestive discomfort. Swapping out the bad for the good is always a win! Do you see a gross expression on my son’s face? Not a chance.
Let me know how your sauerkraut turned out!