Into the Krauts – Golden and red Sauerkraut

5 1/2 years of food blogging and quite some more of cooking … it took such a long time for me to attempt one of the most iconic German dishes, Sauerkraut. The ‘Krauts‘ – the view from outside doesn’t leave any doubts. Although Germans weren’t the first that developed the idea of lacto-fermented cabbage.

I, for my share, have made already a few experiences with wild fermentation – homemade yoghurtKimchi ,water kefir -, learned about the health benefits, especially for digestion and as source of vitamin A, B and C (Did you know that Sauerkraut was the main proliferant of Vitamin C for sailors since the 18th century?). But somehow I always forwent the obvious. Until lately…

It took a picture of Luisa’s golden Sauerkraut on Instagram and a sudden even more direct connection to krauts that made me finally start my first own kraut fermentation.

What came out were those two colourful krauts: a bright golden fermented cabbage with flavours of ginger and especially turmeric, and a bright red with earthy tones of beetroot and a hint of orange. The first batch didn’t keep long. It was a too tempting ingredient to add to all kind of dishes: sandwiches, salads, veggie bowls, scrambled eggs,…

into the krauts

And the personal connection? We are moving into the krauts!  In a bit more than a month, after years of searching we finally found our place, our tiny house! …which lies in the Filder area, probably Germany’s most famous growing area of cabbage, especially sweetheart cabbage.

I couldn’t be happier… and at the same time melancholic and a little bit afraid. For sure exciting, adventurous days lay ahead. And perhaps next year I’ll harvest my first homegrown cabbage from our garden? 😊

Homemade flavoured Sauerkraut
[inspired by this and this recipe]

ingredients
golden Sauerkraut: ½ cabbage (about 700-800 g), 2 carrots (about 200 g), 1 teaspoon grated ginger, 1 teaspoon fresh grated turmeric, ½ teaspoon turmeric (ground), 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, 2 teaspoons sea salt

red Sauerkraut: ½ cabbage (about 700-800 g), 1 beetroot (about 200 g), 1 teaspoon grated ginger, zest of  ½ orange, 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, ½ teaspoon caraway seeds, 2 teaspoons sea salt

preparation
Prepare two large mixing bowls and rubber gloves (!).
Remove outer leaves of cabbage. Cut in quarts lengthwise. Cut out stalk, then thinly slice cabbage and transfer equally to the two bowls.
Wash and roughly grate carrots for the golden Sauerkraut. Peel and grate beetroot for the red Sauerkraut (gloves!).
Add spices to each bowl and start kneading: Massage cabbage until it starts to get soft and loses juice.
Now fill the cabbage into 2 sterlized jars. Press to pack it tightly and the the cabbage is covered with juice (The jar doesn`t have to be full). Leave some space on top for the veggies to expand during the fermentation process. Clean lid and rim of the jar and close lid, but: make sure that the gases that will develop during the fermentation can escape. You achieve this by either remove the rubber band of the jar or by putting a layer of plastic wrap in between the lid and the jar. Anyway it is adviceable to place the jars in a baking dish or a deep tray for any juice that might drip off. Leave the jars to ferment at room temperature for 2-4 weeks. If you like to, you can divide the kraut  into smaller jars now. Store the Sauerkraut in the fridge or at a cool, dark place and it will keep up to 1 year.

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6 comments

  1. chestnut & sage

    Oh das sind ja tolle Neuigkeiten! Und bei der aktuellen Immobilien-Situation erst noch doppeltes Glück – herzlichen Glückwunsch also 🙂 Da geraten die tollen Rezepte für das Kraut ja fast in Vergessenheit…

  2. chestnut & sage

    Oh das sind ja tolle Neuigkeiten! Und bei der aktuellen Immobilien-Situation erst noch doppeltes Glück – herzlichen Glückwunsch also 🙂 Da geraten die tollen Rezepte für das Kraut ja fast in Vergessenheit…

  3. Filderkraut!!! So oft wollte ich schon am Wegrand welches kaufen und habe es doch gelassen, weil ich verschwommene Kindheitserinnerungen an eine sehr aufwändige Prozedur hatte. Sehr grosse tönerne Gefäße, die mit Unmengen von auf einer leitergrossen Reibe zerkleinerten Kohlköpfen befüllt und mit Backsteinen beschwert wurden…und dann dieses wochenlange Geblubber im Keller…
    Aber mit Deinen Rezepten könnte ich mich doch rantrauen. Kleine Mengen in handelsüblichen Gläsern und hübschen Farben!

  4. Hallo, zwei wirklich schöne Rezepte. Kimchi mache ich häufiger, das ist dann aber eher orange. Mein Ratschlag aus der Ecke wäre noch, keine jodiertes Salz zu verwenden. Sonst klappt dass nicht mit der Fermentation. Die zwei Farben werde ich aber auch auf jeden Fall auch ausprobieren. Was ist das denn für ein Körner Cracker auf dem Foto? Der ist bestimmt auch lecker und zum nachmachen. LG Hartwig.

  5. Lieber Hartwig,vielen Dank für den Hinweis. Daran hatte ich mit meinen rudimentären Chemiekenntnissen nicht gedacht! Die Cracker habe ich mit einer Körnermischung gebacken. Ich hoffe, das Rezept perfektionieren zu können – dann kommt es auf den Blog!

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