How to make sauerkraut? One of the first veggies we’ll be pulling out the garden is going to be cabbage. That means it’s going to be time to make sauerkraut soon! Sauerkraut is one of the easiest and most common fermented foods produced. It can be made with about three ingredients and with materials you probably already have in your kitchen. And it lasts. After fermenting (at least three days, depending on personal preference), it can be kept in the fridge for a long time — but if you’re a fan of kraut, like me, it won’t last a week. Fermented foods, like kraut, are not only tasty, they’re incredibly good for you. Sauerkraut contains all sorts of great, beneficial bacteria that are excellent for improving the digestion of food and for boosting the immune system. Fermenting also makes nutrients more available for the body and makes them easier for the gut to absorb. Here’s the instructions: Materials needed: • About three heads of cabbage • Salt (sea salt is preferred, but any table salt will do, including iodized salt) • Water • A bowl • A shredder • A crock or other container big enough to hold the cabbage water mixture (about 2-3 liters) • Weights (can be specifically designed weights or can be plastic zipper bags filled with water — more below) • Mason jars with lids and rings First, shred your cabbage. Use your own judgment here, regarding how small you’d like the shreds to be. I prefer mine to be fat, crunchy shreds of cabbage. (you may also need this to help: cuisinart 14 cup food processor) Once the cabbage is shredded, add 2-3 tablespoons of salt. Be careful not to oversalt the cabbage, as if your kraut is too salty, it will be near inedible. Stir the salt into your shredded cabbage. Squeeze the cabbage and salt mixture with your hands. The goal of this process is to press the water out of the cabbage, creating a cabbage juice and salt mixture. This will take some time. Usually about 5-15 minutes is enough. You’ll know you’re done when you can pick up a handful of shredded cabbage and squeeze it out like a wet sponge. Pack the mixture into your crock. You can use a ceramic crock (some of which are specially made for fermenting, like this one) or you can use any sort of bucket or glass container you may have. Make sure the cabbage juice is deep enough to cover the cabbage shreds. If not, add salt water (2 tbsp. per quart of water) to the mix, just enough to cover the shreds. Cover the container of kraut (with a lid, or with a cloth tied around the opening of the container). Put it on your counter. After about three days, you should have sauerkraut. Taste it! If it’s krauty enough for you, it’s done. If not, then let it sit longer, checking it daily until it hits the krauty level you desire. Once that’s done, take the kraut mixture and pack it into mason jars, cap it off and stick it in the door of your fridge. Eat as often as you like. That’s it. Really. If your kraut develops mold, toss it out and start again.