Sauerkraut Fermenting Canning

tucker303(z5CO)January 19, 2013

I put some cabbage to ferment in a fermenting vessel in September so I could can it. So it has been 4 months that it has not been disturbed. I final finally got around to opening the vessel today as I thought it was a lost cause since I waited so long.

My smelled sooooo good and looks wonderful. If I follow the hot pack method...should this be ok since I waited so long?

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dgkritch(Z8 OR)

Yes, it's fine. You don't even need to can it if you have appropriate cool storage.
It's going to be slightly softer if you can it, but I do anyway just because I don't have storage for a big container.


    Bookmark   January 19, 2013 at 8:12AM
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Thank you Deanna. I started canning this morning pending an answer. I appreciate you getting back to me, Robert

    Bookmark   January 19, 2013 at 9:17AM
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Ohhhh, you killed all those wonderful beneficial healthful bacteria (some vitamins too) that our bodies so love. Consider this:

"..."For his second round-the-world voyage, Capt. Cook loaded 60 barrels of sauerkraut onto his ship. After 27 months at sea, 15 days before returning to England, he opened the last barrel and offered some sauerkraut to some Portuguese noblemen who had come on board. ... they carried off the rest of the barrel to give some to their friends. This last barrel was perfectly preserved after 27 months, in spite of changes in climate and the incessant rocking of the ship. The sauerkraut had also preserved sufficient quantities of Vitamin C to protect the entire crew from scurvy. Not one case occurred during the long voyage even though this disease usually decimated crews of voyages of this length."..."

    Bookmark   January 19, 2013 at 11:18AM
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laceyvail(6A, WV)

Yes, hating fermented foods destroys all the good stuff--and it's lots more than just Vit C.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2013 at 5:48AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Heating kraut hardly destroys all the good stuff nor is canning it some cardinal sin.

I guess it all depends on what is of value to you about sauerkraut. If you prefer the flavor, consistency, high fiber and low fat content, calcium and iron, and its many great uses in cooking recipes (which all involve cooking of some kind anyway) then the minimal canning involved means nothing.

If all you are interested in is consuming beneficial bacteria and/or preventing scurvy then just eat it cold right out of the jar and don't can it.

Better yet, do some of both and get ALL the benefits.


    Bookmark   January 22, 2013 at 5:19PM
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I made kraut last year and canned it, and have been enjoying it for months. My house is too hot during the summer/fall and even a lot of winter for me to keep it fresh, and there isn't room in my fridge for it, so canning is the only long-term option I have. It is just fine.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 7:46PM
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gardenman101(Z6 Spingfield, Ma)

Good answer (as I havnt tried sauerkraut yet, but i intend to (allthough im kinda skittish about fermenting (always affraid ill get a stench i cant get rid of) aw well i guess ill have to get over that Which recipe would you recommend for a beginning fermenter, and I take it its a pressure canner item when complete, correct?


    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 10:25PM
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dgkritch(Z8 OR)

Gardenman, I'm not Dave, but I'm up early! :)
Standard kraut recipe is 3T. salt to 5 lb. of shredded cabbage. I layer the cabbage in a large bowl, sprinkle with salt, repeat. Then I mix it well with my hands. Pack it tightly into a large container. It will create its own juice and that should cover the cabbage. Sometimes I have to wait a few minutes and press it down more to have the juice level high enough. Then fill a ziploc bag with brine and place on top of the cabbage to "seal" it.

I make mine in a 2 1/2 gallon, barrel-shaped Snapware container with the snap top left ajar. Do not put a tight fitting lid on it, but loosely covered is good to keep out dust and curious critters. The gasses need to escape.
Store for 3-5 weeks (guideline, depends on temperature) at 70-75 degrees. I start tasting at 3 weeks.

When complete, you can leave it where it is (if cool enough for long term storage), can it, or refrigerate it.

If you choose to can, it does NOT require pressure canning. Because it's officially now a pickle (through the formation of lactic acid), it may be BWB. You can find all the directions for making the kraut and canning on the National Center for Home Food Preservation website.


    Bookmark   February 8, 2013 at 9:21AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Yep, what Deanna said. :)


Here is a link that might be useful: NCHFP - Kraut

    Bookmark   February 8, 2013 at 10:22AM
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gardenman101(Z6 Spingfield, Ma)

Does it matter weather container is glass or plastic or metal?

    Bookmark   February 15, 2013 at 10:07PM
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I use glass. Wouldn't use metal, it can be reactive. Some people use plastic, but I think glass or crockery is best.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 8:12PM
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oh my goodness. Homemade kraut is *the best*. I was never a big sauerkraut fan until I made it myself on a whim because I was curious. Soooooo good!

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 8:17PM
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Don't be afraid of fermentation, gardenman. I was, too, until I tried it and was really impressed with the flavor. Actually, I threw out the first batch of kraut that I made because I was afraid to taste it. I know now that it was perfectly fine.

Right now, fresh cabbage is in the stores, so give it a try. Yes, you can smell it while it's fermenting - right now I have a big jar of vegetables fermenting in my kitchen window, and when I work at the sink, I can smell it, but it isn't a bad smell.

I've had a couple of batches of ferments go bad, and you can really smell it, and it isn't very pleasant at all. But when you dump it out and clean the jar, the smell is gone, just like any other smell in your kitchen.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 10:48AM
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