Sharp and sour, with a hint of anise flavour from caraway seeds, this sauerkraut recipe is easy for any beginner to master – and super tasty, too.
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Remove and discard the outer leaves of cabbage. Thinly slice remaining cabbage and place in a large clean bowl. Add the salt, caraway and mustard seeds. Use clean hands to massage cabbage mixture for 5 mins or until mixture reduces and a brine produces.
Place the cabbage mixture in a 12-cup (3L) sterilised plastic container with a lid (alternatively divide between two 4-cup (1L) sterilised jars), pressing down on cabbage so that it is covered with the brine. Cover the top of the cabbage with baking paper and weight with a sealed ziplock bag filled with water. Cover with a clean dry tea towel and place in a cool, ventilated place for 5 days (the sauerkraut needs to breathe), gently stirring every day to release any gases and air bubbles.
Remove ziplock bag and seal container or jars. Store in the fridge for up to 5 months.
The longer you leave the sauerkraut to ferment at room temperature, the more sour the flavour will become.
COOK. STORE. SAVE.
Use it up: Use the outer cabbage leaves to make stuffed cabbage rolls.
What is sauerkraut? Until recently, sauerkraut was a staple in German kitchens and restaurants. Sauerkraut is also eaten throughout Eastern Europe. Literally translated to ‘sour cabbage’, this condiment is made by mixing finely shredded cabbage with salt and leaving it to ferment. The liquid that you see in the sauerkraut bottles comes from within the cabbage, which is drawn out by the salt and also when you massage the cabbage. In this briney solution, the bacteria found on the cabbage is fermented in the natural sugars in this veggie, producing lactic acid, which carries a sour flavour. You can serve sauerkraut as is or cook it. Recipes for sauerkraut today tend to include additional flavourings from ingredients like juniper berries or caraway seeds, as in this recipe.
Here are some tips for when you make this recipe for sauerkraut:
To store unopened sauerkraut that has completed fermenting, place it in the fridge for up to 6 months, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Remember to label it with the date you placed it in the fridge or freezer, and also with the expiry date.
Once you have opened a jar of sauerkraut, it will keep in the fridge for up to 1 week. You can serve sauerkraut as is in a hot dog or Reuben sandwich. Or you can warm it up and serve it as a side for pork, schnitzel, sausages or hot smoked fish, or with some potatoes or dumplings.
Become a fermentation expert with this winning sauerkraut recipe. Serve your fermentation creation with German-style potato salad and easy German-style pork roast or roasted pork knuckle with vegetables.