I started my batch of homemade sauerkraut on September 18th and today is November 2nd. That’s makes right at about 6 weeks. I opened the fermentation bucket and, with a sanitized spoon, I removed the plate that was keeping everything weighted down and removed a sample. Yes! It tastes like sauerkraut! Here’s the September 18th entry:
I removed a few cups of the kraut to a colander. I stirred the sauerkraut around and pushed it below the surface of the liquid again. I sanitized the plate and put it back in place and resealed the bucket. I’ll divide it into quart jars and refrigerate it later. I rinsed the kraut in the colander and placed it in an oven-safe souffle dish.
I topped the kraut with some fresh brats
and I added some uncarbonated beer that I removed as a test sample from a batch I am brewing. Covered it with foil and placed it in a 425F oven.
Cooked for 30 minutes and uncovered and returned to the oven for another 15 minutes. Lowered the oven to 350F. Baking some potatoes as well and they’re done (And my son just HAD to have a kid’s TV dinner…uck. But he picked it.)
With a few minutes to go, I turned the sausage, just to brown them a little more. The sausage and kraut were delicious! A little brown mustard on the side and served with peas and baked potato. Awesome!
Packaging the sauerkraut…I sanitized some quart size canning jars and filled them with sauerkraut, then added the brine to cover and put the lids on.
I understand that this kraut will continue to ferment very slowly under refrigeration and will last a very long time, so I’m not going to bother to process the jars for shelf-stable storage (although, I could), I would rather keep it fresh and maintain the macrobiotic properties. If I cook it, that benefit will be compromised, but that decision can be made depending on the recipe.
I was able to pack four 1-quart jars, plus a single pint jar of sauerkraut.
Additionally, I brined the cabbage cores along with the kraut. Some people evidently like to eat them like pickles…so, I stuffed those into a pint jar and put everything into the refrigerator.
Oh, one more little side treat: I have a few ounces of the brine left over. I’m going to chill that and add an ounce of vodka to it for a little probiotic nightcap later. (No, seriously! There are those who say that drinking sauerkraut juice is really good for you! The vodka…not so much. But I have to make it worth the try!).