Hello friends! Last weekend I received a head of purple cabbage in my CSA box. And you know what that means? Kraut time of course! If there is a head of cabbage anywhere near my kitchen it WILL be made into some sort of sauerkraut or pickled concoction. That’s just a given!
So this time I wasn’t sure what I was going to add to it. hmmm… I went on a mission to search through my fridge AND I had just happen to have organic, bright, orange carrots and beautiful red radishes in the crisper and since I had never used radishes in a kraut before it was the perfect opportunity to test it out in my lab. I had no idea what flavor the radishes would add to it. They were a little spicy so I thought fermentation would enhance the spiciness of the radishes and give it some heat, but nope! I was wrong. And that is another reason why I love fermentation, because I never know what delicious surprise, or not (that’s why I call it the lab), would be waiting for my taste buds a week later. I was totally surprised by the flavor I found this morning.
The radishes added a depth of earthiness and savory flavor to the kraut. The Japanese would say that it had umami flavor which roughly translates to mean a “pleasant savory taste”. Yum!! It’s still morning for me, but it has me daydreaming of brats with kraut or a grass-fed paleo burger topped with a big heaping spoonful of this stuff…drooling… I’ll have to try it this week and get back to ya! Not only is this sauerkraut a powerhouse of nutrient density, but it also inspires creativity on this Sunday morning.
Once again my friends, this method of making sauerkraut, called lacto-fermentation, is rich with probiotics that promote a healthy gut, which allows the body to absorb more nutrients. This is especially important if you are someone suffering from digestive issues such as heartburn, constipation or diarrhea. If you incorporate these foods into your diet you will notice positive changes. I had these problems too and these foods have made a BIG difference in my life. That is why I am sharing them with you.
Now that I got that off my chest, back to the kraut.
Like I’ve said before, you can’t mess up sauerkraut too much. You may end up with some weird flavors if you experiment like me, but you don’t have to, because I am doing all of that work for you and only write about recipes I deem a success. Luckily my fridge had the ingredients for this tasty Carrot and Radish Sauerkraut. If you like savory foods, you will certainly like this kraut.
- 1 head of shredded cabbage
- 7 small carrots grated
- 9 radishes grated
- 1 tablespoon of sea salt
- Pull 3 outer leaves off the head of cabbage and set aside. Shred the remaining cabbage in a food processor or mandolin or chop with a knife.
- Place shredded or chopped cabbage in a big bowl with the grated carrots, radishes and sea salt.
- Massage the cabbage mixture with your hands until it breaks down and becomes soft (about 10 min).
- Pack the cabbage in the mason jar tightly, pushing it all the way down until it submerges in its own juices (this is the brine). Leave about 1½ inches of space from the top of the jar. If there is not enough brine to cover the cabbage, add more brine by combining a teaspoon of sea salt with 1 cup of water.
- Roll up the leaves and place them in the jar to push the cabbage under the brine. Screw on the jar loosely so gas can escape as fermentation takes place. Set on the counter for 7 days in a cool, shaded place. During fermentation the sauerkraut will bubble a little and become cloudy. If scum appears, remove it with a spoon.
- Remove the rolled up cabbage leaves and toss in the garbage before eating.