Sauerkraut is super easy to make and has wonderful health benefits. It is considered to be a digestive aid due to its natural digestive enzymes, as well as its probiotic bacteria, vitamins and minerals. It really is a super food which will boost the immune system and help to keep your gut lining healthy.
Sauerkraut is made by a process called lacto-fermentation which is when the beneficial bacteria (lactobacillus) on the surface of the cabbage convert the sugars in the cabbage to lactic acid when submerged in brine. This process has been used for centuries as a way of preserving vegetables but, nowadays, people eat it because of the healthy probiotics. Aim to eat it every day. It can be eaten on its own, as a condiment or it can be added to salads.
1 head of cabbage, finely shredded
2 tbsp of caraway seeds
2 tbsp high quality sea salt
- Remove the outer leaves from the cabbage, quarter, remove the core and finely shred. Wash thoroughly and mix in a bowl with the caraway seeds and salt. Leave it to stand for 15 minutes.
- Massage and squeeze the cabbage for about 5-10 minutes which will help the cabbage to start to release its juices.
- Pack tightly into a glass jar leaving about an inch at the top. Fold a piece of parchment paper to size and place on top of the cabbage before closing the lid.
- Place in the fridge and allow up to 4 weeks for the fermentation process to take place. You know the fermentation is happening as you will hear a fizzy sound of air escaping which is the carbon dioxide escaping the jar.
* This will keep for up to a year but don’t freeze it as this will destroy the probiotics.
** You can add different flavourings to your sauerkraut such as celery seeds, dill seeds, juniper berries, garlic etc.
*** A mandoline slicer can be used for shredding the cabbage into really thin slices.
**** If you do buy commercially made sauerkraut, read the label as some are pasteurised and this process can destroy many of the live cultures.