Raw fermented sauerkraut is a superfood for your gut and digestion. It is healthier than the most commonly known canned or jarred boiled/pasteurized cabbage. This version doesn’t get boiled, instead it is fermented in a cool, dark room at temperatures between 60-75F. Why? Fermentation develops loads of beneficial probiotics which are bacterial microorganisms that counter the negative effects that antibiotics and medication have on our stomachs and intestinal flora!
Fermented sauerkraut is super easy to make (20-25 minutest) and very cost effective. You are basically paying $5 for an organic head of cabbage which will yield you 1.5L and at supermarkets that would cost you at least $24! The difficult part is the waiting game….5-14 days (depending on how strong tasting you like your kraut and if you are anything like me, I wait the full 2 weeks!).
As with most fermented food, eat 2-3 tablespoons before all meals for a healthier digestion. I use red cabbage because the purple nourishes and balances my third eye chakra where my intuition lies and it is full of antioxidants. You can also use a combination of white cabbage and even shred a few carrots, parsnips and slice some radishes.
Makes about 3 – 500ml mason jars
1 large red cabbage, shredded on 1/8″ thickness mandolin blade
2 tbsp fine sea salt (i used half fine grey sea salt and half celery seed lime sea salt I bought from my travels to Bali)
Keep 3 outer leaves of cabbage
- Cut cabbage in quarters and shred each quarter in a large bowl.
- Sprinkle 2 tbsp fine sea salt and begin massaging the finely shredded cabbage (5-8 minutes). You will notice it will begin to “sweat” and that’s because the sodium has a natural chemical reaction to the sulfur in the cabbage and it releases its juices. Keep these beneficial juices.
- Rinse 3 glass mason jars and dry well. Pack as much “sweaty” cabbage to fill the jar 1.5″ from top. Pour some liquid to cover cabbage.
- Place a cabbage leaf inside the jar and on top of the cabbage. Place a weight on top (I filled a smaller container with pebbles and rocks for a grassroots and cheap alternative) and cover with a cloth and elastic.
- Put jars on kitchen counter top or inside your pantry for up to 2 weeks for a strong tasting sauerkraut. If you would like a more mild tasting kraut, leave to ferment for about 5-7 days. Check daily to make sure there is no mold and if you do see some, just discard the molded cabbage (this has never happened to me). Always make sure you leave jars in a cool area (60-75F max.) away from sun or heat but do not place in refrigerator until fermentation is finished. Seal jars when you have finished fermenting and place in fridge. Will keep for months.
- Eat 2-3 tbsp before or at the beginning of meals. Safe and healthy for children too!