Base Sauerkraut w/ Caraway
- Serves: 1 pt
- Active Time: 1 hr
- Total Time: 1 hr
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Step 1: Preparing the Ingredients• 1/2–head green cabbage (approx. 1 lb), chopped
• 1/4 tsp caraway seeds
• 1 1/2 tsp sea salt
To prepare the sauerkraut, begin by thinly shredding the cabbage, using a mandolin. Alternatively, slice very thinly, using a knife.
Next, add the caraway seeds and sea salt and gently massage into the cabbage. After just a few minutes, the cabbage will begin to soften and release liquid. This liquid will actually become the brine solution that the sauerkraut will ferment in.
Step 2: Storing & Fermenting the Sauerkraut• additional Brine Solution (if needed)
At this point, transfer the cabbage and the liquid to a jar or other non-reactive container. Tap the jar to release some of the air bubbles. If needed, add a bit more Brine Solution, so that once weighted, the cabbage will be completely submerged.
Now, cover the weighted container with a clean towel or cloth to allow the fermentation process to begin.
Leave the sauerkraut out, at room temperature, for 4 to 7 days, or until it begins to produce tiny carbon dioxide bubbles. This is an indicator that the fermentation process has begun. Taste it. It should be a bit sour or tangy.
If there is any scum or mold (called “bloom”), simply skim it off the top – this is very normal and only indicative of surface mold and not contamination.
At this point, seal the container, label and date it and refrigerate. Many krauts can keep six months or more if kept well refrigerated.
- by Ken Rubin
- January 4, 2014
Some ferments can take longer to initiate, especially ferments with more volume, higher specific salinity and lower room temperature (e.g. in a 55°F/12°C basement vs. a 70°F/21°C apartment).
The longer the ferment, the tangier and more “bioactive” the mixture will become. Once you refrigerate it, the fermentation process will slow dramatically.