December 19, 2012

Small Batch Winter Sauerkraut

Sauerkraut to break up all the holiday cookie recipes - you didn't see that coming, did ya? I made a batch of pistachio brittle and this sauerkraut in one evening. I felt very accomplished. 

I used my mandolin slicer to thinly slice a medium-sized head of green cabbage into a large bowl. I then sprinkled it with canning and pickling salt (Kosher salt works too, just avoid anything that is iodized), and massaged it until it looked bruised and was juicy. I sprinkled in whole peppercorns and celery seed. I would have also like to add caraway or dill seed.

I then packed it tightly into two clean wide-mouth quart jars, and covered it with a whole cabbage leaf. Maybe this is more aesthetic than practical, since I definitely like the look. But the whole leaf helps to keep all the shreds under the liquid too.

Everything is weighted down with a jelly jar that is filled with water and pressed into the quart jar. I covered the jars with some muslin cloth and put them in the corner where the heat pipe (usually inconveniently) runs through my pantry cabinet. I'll wait a few days to taste it and then move it to the fridge, where it will last for a few months.