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Friday, December 16, 2011

Sauerkraut




Breakfast was over and some of the Assisted Living residents were watching TV or waiting to have their Thursday morning shampoo and set.

I was a bit early and the representative from the the Railroad had not yet arrived.  She was bringing a letter of congratulations from the Railroad Retirement Board for my mother as Mom will be 100 years old on December 30th. 

I decided to step inside through the gated door to greet my mother. I had given instructions to curl her short hair and she looked so pretty with her curls.  Mother’s eyes were closed as they often are and my kisses and voice could not awaken her, so I retreated back to the front desk to wait for the Railroad person. I had no longer seated myself when in walked my Mother’s Pastor and his wife. 

Kurt the owner of the Home greeted them and we all sat to chat. I am not certain how the conversation turned to Sauerkraut, but it seems that Kurt’s German grandmother and also his mother always prepared their own from an old German recipe.

Kurt told us that his family would use a large crock to make their kraut and the vitamin C rich Sauerkraut was a staple in their diet.

I was intrigued because I am interested in Probiotic foods especially since I began to brew my own Kombucha tea which helps me to keep in better health. Probiotics are foods such as yogurt, fermented and unfermented milk, miso, tempeh, some juices and soy beverages, and don’t forget sauerkraut. These go through a fermenting process that creates good bacteria that works with your body for good wellbeing.

Researching Sauerkraut I discovered several intricate and also some very simple recipes. Some added other vegetables such as a grated carrot, onions, garlic, seaweed, and greens, and herbs and spices (caraway seeds, dill seeds, celery seeds, and juniper berries are classic.  Myself, I prefer plain!

image courtesy photobucket.com
The recipe that caught my attention was one that you might want to try using a standard quart mason jar. The author used 6 jars but you can try this with just one for fun. 

Sauerkraut the Easy method

Cut your green or red cabbage in half and using a sharp knife, slice and chop enough cabbage to fit into your quart jar. Pack the cabbage tightly into the jar.

Add 1/2 teaspoon of honey and 1 teaspoon of Sea or Kosher salt on top of the cabbage.

Stick a table kitchen knife into the jar along side of the cabbage and slowly pour boiling water over cabbage. The boiling water will dissolve the honey and salt and distribute them in the jar.

Loosely place a lid on your jar until the fermenting is done. Set your jar in a pan or on newspaper in a dark, cool place to ferment. Check every couple days and press with a wooden spoon so that the cabbage is covered with the water. Just be warned, if any bloom starts to develop on top, scrape it off your kraut is still good. After fermentation takes place (2 to 3 weeks), tighten the lids on jar. Enjoy some every day!

This post is linked with Ann Kroeker’s, Food on Fridays  Please visit there and enjoy!

3 comments:

  1. Happy birthday to your mother! I love sauerkraut, Hazel. I can't seem to sell the other members of the family on it, though, so I don't get to have it very often. Your recipe has my mouth watering a bit.

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  2. Well you know I too have interest in natural foods to fuel, feed, and protect the body. It's been a long time since I've had any kraut. It's gonna take some doing to talk my full blooded Italian wife in to help me out!

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  3. I need to forward this to a niece who is heavily involved in what you are talking about; my husband would love the sauerkraut. I obviously need to learn a lot.

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