September 28, 2020

Spicy Radish & Jalapeño Sauerkraut

INGREDIENTS:

• 1 medium sized cabbage (~1.5 lb)

• 1 tbsp salt

• 3 radishes, sliced thinly in rings

• 3 jalapenos, sliced thinly in rings

EQUIPMENT:

• 2 mason jars

• 2 smaller jars that fit inside the neck of the mason jars

• Weights (marbles, rocks coins etc.)

PROCEDURE:

1.  Rinse cabbage. Remove the outer leaves and cut the cabbage into quarters and trim out the core. Slice each quarter down its length, making 8 wedges. Slice each wedge crosswise into very thin ribbons.

2.  Combine the cabbage and salt in a big bowl.  Massage and squeeze the cabbage with your hands. At first it might not seem like enough salt, but gradually the cabbage will become watery and limp.  This will take 5 to 10 minutes.

3.  Add your thinly sliced radishes and jalapeños into a clean mason jar, then pack the cabbage on top, tamping it down with your fist or tool that will fit into your jar.

4.  Once all the cabbage is packed into the mason jar, slip the smaller jar into the mouth of the jar and weigh it down with clean stones or marbles. This will help keep the cabbage weighed down, and eventually, submerged beneath its liquid.

5.  Cover the mouth of the mason jar with a cloth and secure it with a rubber band. This allows air to flow in and out of the jar, but prevents dust or insects from getting into the jar.

6.  Press the cabbage every few hours. Over the next 24 hours, press down on the cabbage every so often with the smaller weighted jar. As the cabbage releases its liquid, it will become more limp and compact and the liquid will rise over the top of the cabbage.

7. If after 24 hours, the liquid has not risen above the cabbage, dissolve 1 teaspoon of salt in 1 cup of water and add enough to submerge the cabbage.

8.  Ferment the cabbage for 3 to 10 days. As it’s fermenting, keep the sauerkraut away from direct sunlight and at a cool room temperature. Check it daily and press it down if the cabbage is floating above the liquid.

9.  Start tasting it after 3 days — when the sauerkraut tastes good to you, remove the weight, screw on the cap, and refrigerate. While it’s fermenting, you may see bubbles coming through the cabbage, foam on the top, or white scum. These are all signs of a healthy, happy fermentation process. The scum can be skimmed off the top either during fermentation or before refrigerating.

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