Mid-autumn - it's time to sauer the cabbage. Cool October smells like leaves, smoke of autumn bonfires and delicious, crispy, vitamin sauerkraut. Let now, at any time of the year, you can buy fresh or frozen vegetables and fruits, and in supermarkets sell overseas fruits and salads in Korean - they will not replace simple, but such healthy sauerkraut! She is the leader of the winter menu on the content of vitamin C, which is unlikely to remain in the "plastic" winter fruits or stocks from the freezer. And how to cook this - now find out.
Did you know that even princes at the time of Kievan Rus set aside special plots in vegetable gardens - cabbages, especially for growing cabbage for fermentation? And they did the right thing - after all, except for ascorbine for strong immunity, sauerkraut supplies the body with iron - for hemoglobin, potassium - for the heart, magnesium - for strong nerves!
Sauerkraut is good not only in itself - in the form of an appetizing salad with fragrant sunflower oil. It is also a delicious ingredient for many dishes: you can stew meat with it, cook borsch, cook vinaigrettes, strudels, cakes, dumplings!
Ingredients for Sauerkraut
On 1 large head of cabbage - 1 large carrot. Cabbage is almost always kvasyat in company with carrots, which gives a crunch and flavor. For a 3-liter capacity - approximately 1, 5-2 tablespoons of salt and 0.5 cups of sugar.
Salt for fermentation is suitable only large, stone, and certainly - not iodized! From iodized salt, cabbage, like pickles, is made soft, so use regular table salt.
How to choose cabbage for pickling
The taste of cabbage is influenced not only by the recipe, but also by many other factors: the variety, the quality and even the time when the cabbage was cut.
The best cabbage for fermentation in the fall - mid-late varieties ("Glory", "Gift"), which are cut in early October. The later ones are better suited for fresh storage or for the “second run” - fermentation of cabbage for New Year.
Do not hesitate to take a good look at the market and even touch the cabbage! We need the whitest and most dense heading. It is from these sauerkraut turns tasty, crispy. When you click on the heading you hear crunching, is it resilient, juicy, not loose? What you need!
Also make sure that the cabbage is not frozen and not rotted. If you clear and ferment spoiled cabbage - instead of fermented, there is a risk of getting rotten. And if someone has already peeled off the upper leaves, it is quite possible that the cabbage was frozen. Better choose untouched cabbage and remove the top layer of leaves yourself - they will be useful to us.
Which package to choose?
Kvass cabbage can be in glass, wooden, enamelled containers.
And in plastic and metal - aluminum, stainless - it is impossible!
Usually the cabbage is sour in jars, sometimes in barrels, but it is also possible in a saucepan. The main thing is that the enamel is intact.
Method of cooking sauerkraut
There are two ways to harvest cabbage: dry and “wet”. In the first case, the cabbage fray with salt, in the second - poured brine, warm or cold. I cook by the second method.
Rinse the cabbage and remove 2-3 top leaves, do not throw them away.
We clean the carrots and wash them.
Chop the cabbage with a knife or shred. We try not to chop thickly, but it’s not too thin either, so that the cabbage is not soft, but crispy.
Carrots rub on a large grater. By the way, grated carrot gives sauerkraut a subtle pinkish-orange hue. And if you cut the carrot into thin strips, the cabbage will remain white.
Prepare the brine by dissolving the salt in warm water.
Mix cabbage with carrots and tightly tamp in a bowl for souring (in this case - the pan), pour warm brine and pour cold water to the top of the container.
Cover the leaves with cabbage and put the oppression on top. Metal items are not suitable. You can use a heavy stone (cleanly washed!), Or a wooden plank, or a cover from a glass form, and put something heavy on top. For example, a can of preservation. And under the container with cabbage, you need to put a bowl so that the brine is poured there during fermentation.
Put the cabbage in a warm place for 2 days. Do not forget to sometimes pierce the billet with a wooden stick to the full height, so that the gases that form during fermentation and which can give the cabbage a bitter taste come out.
After 2 days, dissolve the sugar in a small amount of brine and pour it into the cabbage. We are waiting for another day - and delicious, crunchy sauerkraut will be ready!
For taste and color
Above is one of the basic recipes for sauerkraut, which can be varied with all sorts of additives to your taste.
If, in addition to the carrot, add beets - cabbage will acquire the original taste and beautiful pink hue. You can put a little pickles or mushrooms; add sour fruits or berries - apples, plums; very tasty and original is obtained with cranberries.
In addition to salt and sugar, you can make sauerkraut with other spices: black or allspice, cloves, bay leaf. How many housewives - so many variations.
Ferment your cabbage and share the recipe with us!