Let’s ferment some deliciousness, shall we. We are talking blaukraut here people. This batch of fermented veggies came out much more mild then my last batch that had more onion flavor. This recipe calls for caraway seeds, which I had never experienced before. They are very interesting little seeds. They give the kraut a minty, spicy weird taste. There were times that I was like, “wooo okay, I can dig it.” Then there were times where I was like, “damn it, why are there so many?” If you have not figured it out by now, we are honest here, people. Take it or leave it. We still gobbled down two jars of this stuff, well because it was delicious and good for our bellies. So give it a try and let me know what you think, caraway seeds just might be your new favorite flavor. Anyway, let’s get on with it.
You can serve this with any dish as a side. You can put it in your sandwich for a nice crunch or you can top it with blue cheese crumbles and walnuts and have it as a salad. I didn’t have blue cheese but I had feta and Mmm it was tasty. Onward.
1 head red cabbage
3 honey crisp apples
1 1/2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon caraway seeds
1. Rinse cabbage and peel the outer layers of leaves that look run down. Save one or two leaves and set aside. Thinly shred cabbage and put in a big bowl.
2. Rinse, core and peel apples. Quarter apples and again thinly slice apples into little sticks. Add to bowl of cabbage.
3. Thinly slice onion and place in bowl with apples and cabbage
4. Weigh your bowl to make sure you have about 2 lbs of mass.
5. Now add your salt and caraway seeds and begin to massage your veggies.
Now I must stress that massaging with your hands is truly the best way to work your brine out of your veggies. My first few batches I used my plunger from my VitaMix blender and all it did was make way more work for me. The liquid took FOREVER to draw out and it just frustrated me. Then I started massaging it and BAM, liquid all over the place. The salt needs to be worked agains the walls of the veggies to draw out the liquid.
6. Massage for about 5 minute and then cover with plastic wrap or a towel and let sit for about 30-40 minutes. When you come back to it you should see a little liquid in your bowl. Massage for another 15-20 minutes. When you squeeze the veggies in your hand and liquid pours out, you are about done.
7. Pack veggies in vessel of choice. You can use a crock, Fido jars, or a mason jar with airlocks. I went with mason jars with airlocks on them. I have been very pleased with this system. You can fit about 2lbs of mass in two quart size jars. Make sure you are pressing the veggies all the way down so that the brine (liquid) is covering over the veggies. This is what creates the anaerobic environment you are looking for.
8. Remember that cabbage leaf I had you save, take one and place on top of your veggies. This is your primary weight. Now take a small jar and place it on top of the leaf, this is your secondary weight. Make sure to push down all the veggies so that the liquid rises. Your secondary weight can be a boiled rock, small jar, a plastic baggie filled with brine, whatever gets your veggies to stay under the liquid.
9. Place your lid with the airlock on it, the lid to your crock or your Fido jar lid and place in your pantry for a week to whatever tickles your fancy. This batch, since I had two jars, I took one out at a week and put it in the fridge. Then I let the other one sit for about three. We dug how tart the three week old batch tasted. This is all experimentation. Try different lengths of time, try different veggies, just try.
That’s it my friends. Delicious fermented veggies that do amazing stuff for your bellies.
I am still on my experimenting journey. So share any secrets you have, I would love to hear them. Leave a comment below or shoot me an email.
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