The Milkweed Diaries

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Sauerkraut!

This is the first year we've grown cabbage, and we had a pretty good crop despite our naive lack of cabbage moth control at the beginning.

Some of the cabbage from our garden (top) is going into the current batch of sauerkraut. Making kraut is my favorite old-time way of preserving vegetables without heat or electricity. All that you need is a crock and some salt, and you are on your way to sour, salty, sauerkraut delights.

The batch that's fermenting now includes the aforementioned cabbage, a bunch of gorgeous beets I pulled a few days ago, onions, dill flowers, and carrots. Past experience tells me that the beets will make it turn out a very pretty hot pink color.

I could include a recipe here, but there's really no need for formal directions. Just chop everything up (I like to make beets and radishes super-thin, cut the carrots on a diagonal, and slice the cabbage in long, crinkly strips); smash it down in the crock as you go (I use a potato masher for this part); keep adding layers; and sprinkle a teaspoon or so of salt after every few inches of chopped veggies. Here's a picture (bottom) of the layers getting layered. Then put a plate on top and something heavy (I use an old Bombay Sapphire bottle full of water) and press, press, press every time you're in the kitchen.

Wait a few weeks or if you are a hardcore European-style krauter, a few months, and then, viola!

Did I mention it's very good for you?

1 comment:

joseph said...

That looks like it'll be amazing. I've only put dill in my pickles, never in sauerkraut. I'll try that soon... (Although I still have a bit of sauerkraut and some sauerrĂ¼ben left over from last fall, heh).

Best of luck!