Sauerkraut

Home-made Sauerkraut has a crunch and a pleasing, mild acidity that is very much superior to the shop bought versions. 

Ingredients

  • 1 large white cabbage, approx. 1 kilo
  • Fine sea or cooking salt, approx. 25g – see tips

Instructions

  1. Clean and dry a 1.4 litre Lakeland Fermentation Jar
  2. Slice the cabbage into quarters and then remove and discard the core. Slice each quarter as thinly as you can, transferring the slices to a large ceramic or stainless steel bowl. Weigh the cabbage and sprinkle over the salt – for a kilo of prepared cabbage you will need 25g salt. Toss the salt and cabbage together until the cabbage begins to feel damp. Transfer the cabbage to the jars a handful at a time, pressing each layer down firmly. Leave a gap at the top big enough for a ramekin (see next step).
  3. Fill a ramekin with ceramic baking beans and wrap with cling film, then place on top of your cabbage in the jar – this will keep the cabbage submerged in the brine which is produced. Put the lid on and depress the silicone stopper to form an airtight seal – the one-way valve in the lid will allow excess gas to escape and stop oxygen getting in. Store in a warm place – around 21°C/70°F is perfect.
  4. The next day, remove the ramekin and examine your kraut. If it has not yet produced enough brine to cover all the cabbage, top up with a little home-made brine. To make the brine, mix 1 litre of hot water with 1½ tbsp salt, and leave to cool before using.
  5. After 8 days the sauerkraut should be ready. Taste it, and for a stronger flavour, leave it a further four or five days. When it tastes how you like it, store it in the fridge – it should keep well for a month.

Tips

Choose large, fresh cabbages – the common Dutch white works very well.

Slice the cabbage as thinly as possible in order to allow the salt to draw the brine and work quickly.

The ratio of salt to cabbage is crucial to your success – too little and you won’t preserve your kraut – too much and the fermentation will be inhibited. Every 1 kilo of prepared cabbage requires 25g fine cooking or sea salt – don’t use coarse salt or flakes as they take too long to dissolve.