Easy Fermented Sauerkraut

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PREP TIME

10 min

TOTAL TIME

10 min

Makes

3 cups

* PLUS 3 to 8 days fermentation time
Easy Fermented Sauerkraut

Illustration by Carmen Jabier.

Fermentation may seem intimidating, but this method, which I learned from Montreal food stylist and fermentation teacher Blake Mackay, is super easy and a great way to preserve any leftover cabbage from another recipe—which is often likely when you’ve bought an entire head. You need to eat sauerkraut raw to get the maximum probiotic benefits, but it’s also delicious when braised with fresh cabbage or used in stews, like Polish bigos.—Camilla Wynne


Ingredients

  • 4 cups (450 g) thinly sliced cabbage
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine cabbage and salt. Massage the cabbage with your hands until it is limp and has released plenty of liquid, about 5 min.
  2. Pack cabbage and its liquid into a clean 1 L mason jar, pressing the cabbage to submerge it in the liquid. If the liquid doesn’t cover it, add filtered water to cover. Place the lid on the jar and place the jar in a shallow bowl, in case of overflow.
  3. The next day, loosen the lid of the jar to release any built=up gases, then close tightly and shake (this will prevent any mould from developing). Repeat every day. After 3 days, use a clean fork to taste a strand of cabbage—it’s ready when it tastes pleasantly sour to you. This can take 3 to 8 days or so, depending on the residual temperature of your kitchen. When the sauerkraut tastes good, transfer it to the fridge. It will keep for up to 3 months.

Kitchen tip

Feel free to make a larger amount of sauerkraut—just make sure you keep the ratio the same, weigh the prepared cabbage and use 2 to 3 percent of its weight in salt. Your jar should only be filled three-quarters full with cabbage.

Spice it up!

Flavour your sauerkraut by tucking some fresh or dried herbs and spices, and/or different veg, into your jar.

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