I must admit I am new to the whole fermented veg caper.
I was one of those people who always said sauerkraut was gross.
Until I actually tried it! LOL
Once I tried it I realised just how awesome it actually is.
But there are loads of veg ferments you can do.
Beetroot is another fave here with my son and I am yet to try other veg.
I prefer sauerkraut myself and love love love it with beef!
Another thing that turned me off it was that I thought it was something terribly difficult to make.
The opposite couldn't be more true though.
If you can use a knife you can make kraut pretty much.
That is how simple it is.
Slice some cabbage, actually you'll want loads of cabbage as it packs down quite a bit. Take off the outer leaves (but keep them as you will use them later).
Once you have sliced it up thinly, cut it into inch long pieces and put in a large dish. Then pound it with a meat cleaver or, as I used, a rolling pin.
This releases juices and sugars and helps get the fermentation process happening. Once you can see it is wet move on to the next step of salting it all.
Sprinkle some salt and add some water and culture.
The salt I use is the seaweed salt from Changing Habits. I love himalayan salt at the best of times but like the added nutrition of seaweed in this one.
I used 1/2 a medium cabbage for one large jar of kraut and I added two good pinches of salt to the cabbage and mixed it in well.
Once you have mixed the salt in well it is time to pack it into your jar. Make sure you have a clean, sterile jar. As you add the cabbage, push it down firmly with your rolling pin or spoon etc Make sure you push it down as hard as you can.
When you have all the cabbage in the jar add your water and starter. I used about 3tbs of water kefir and filtered (no chlorine or fluoride) water. Add enough water to cover the sliced cabbage. You don't want cabbage sticking out the top as it will go mouldy and spoil.
With those outer leaves tear them up and place them in the top, Pushing the sliced cabbage down under the liquid.
When it is all nicely packed in and covered pop a clean cloth over the top to keep dust/bugs out and sit it in a warm spot. Just check reguarly that the cabbage is still under the liquid line.
Depending on the weather it will take between three days and two weeks to get all funky and tasty.
After the first couple of days just have a taste every now and then to see if you like it in.
The texture should be firm but not raw crunchy and it should have a bit of a funky smell about it.
It really is personal taste as to how long you let it ferment but once it has reached the point you want pop it in the fridge to stop the process.
You can add some of the liquid from this one to your subsequent batches as a starter and if you don't have kefir to add don't panic. You can add some probiotic, or buy a whey powder online to add. You can also make it without any of these but the process may take a bit longer.
As I said, I love it with beef in particular. Fermented veg are so beneficial to your health and aid digestion. The lactic acid released in the fermentation process help promote the growth of good bacteria in the gut too.