Saturday, 23 July 2011

Sauerkraut and Cabbage Kimchi

Besides beautiful 'Slaws, Pot-au-Feu and stir-frying in vinegar, Sauerkraut is quite the best way of rescuing Cabbage from the confined notions we have about the vegetable: insipid, slovenly, "cabbagey" Sauerkraut is not, but sharp, sparky, sexy even, a super accompaniment to meats, cheeses, grains... it will zaz up even the most drear' of dishes.

Make sauerkraut in times of glut as it may require several, using white or red cabbage, very thinly sliced, and adulterate as you wish with favourites leaves, fruit or spices.

For a classic Sauerkraut:
Slice White Cabbage very thinly, layer with Salt (10g per 1lt Jar), Caraway Seeds and Sliced Apple, pushing down as you go.  Eventually the liquid form the cabbage will rise to cover the leaves. Weigh down so the Cabbage remains covered by the water.  Leave thus at room-temperature for about three days, the start of fermentation is marked by bubbling, then move to a cooler place and allow to ferment slowly for at least a month, not being afraid to taste regularly.

(You can also use Rocket, Red-Mustard Leaves, Land Cress, Horseradish Leaves, Fennel, Mustard Seeds or preferred Herbs with the Cabbage in the above recipe.  Blackcurrant Leaves, rife with Lactobacilli might speed up fermentation, Salt keeps it in check.)

For a zestier version, based on the Korean fermented dish, Kimchi:

Chop cabbage with Chillies; grated Horseradish; White, Black or French Radishes, chopped; grated Root Ginger; Spring Onions.  Use your own judgement to measure amounts of each.  Squeeze into jar or crock, layering with Salt (10g to 1lt Jar), until liquid rises. Weigh down and leave to ferment as above.


For more in-detail information about Lacto-Fermentation, please refer to earlier posts:  The Art of Lacto-Fermentation, Purge!Fermentation Fervour, Wild Fermentation (review)      
or Sandor Ellix Katz's Wild Fermentation website.
See also Carl Legge's posts on Fermenting and particularly this one about Kimchi.


  1. What a beautiful blog! And you live in my favourite part of England too. I have Sandor Katz's book, but have not tried making sauerkraut or kimchee yet, one day maybe...

  2. Thanks! well, 'tisn't baking, but those fermented veg recipes are really excellent - a true joy to discover, true taste sensation (!!) and would go well with your remarkable breads.


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