3

votes

Hack my first sauerkraut.

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 22, 2012 at 10:45 PM

I am making my first sauerkraut, but I don't know if it is ready, if I need to wait a little more or if it definitely is spoiled! Today is its 10th day.

I used half cabbage with celtic salt and 1 shredded carrot.

Now the kraut at the top is more yellowish than the rest, I guess thats part of the fermentation process... Fermented at room temperature average 15 - 26 C.

Should it look completely yellowish?
How do I know when the fermentation is over? How do I store them? How long does it stay fresh?

Thanks!

C4deaa6bb01626b4569e8992890381ab

(925)

on March 06, 2013
at 09:52 AM

I'll second that, i make mine in mason jars completely sealed & never had a bad batch yet, i'm just careful to not let the pressure build up by letting a bit out once a day.

4e184df9c1ed38f61febc5d6cf031921

(5005)

on March 06, 2013
at 09:35 AM

Eugene, everything I read says that air is the enemy of sauerkraut - anaerobic fermentation is best?

3b031bce7c181c10452ee202e2b54dc6

(803)

on March 06, 2013
at 02:13 AM

its probably ok for a first time experiment though? I mean if I eat from the center and leave the outer edges... I should be alright. I will head to the container store and walmart to check into a nice big glass container I can make work. Gonna need some for pickles too!

75d65450b6ff0be7b969fb321f1200ac

(2506)

on March 06, 2013
at 01:47 AM

Personally I would leave the mop bucket to mops. Go with a ceramic or a glass container. But yes, if your cabbage is totallyly submerged you are good. And eight days of fermenting works for me if you are talking about room temperature.

3b031bce7c181c10452ee202e2b54dc6

(803)

on March 06, 2013
at 12:42 AM

add it to bone broths?? :-D

54f75fb54778cfa947990bec1175307a

(665)

on August 27, 2012
at 11:59 PM

I think it shouldn't be tightly closed, air is necessary for proper fermentation.

4a14ce626f3855e1ca76aa111a523dc2

(15)

on August 27, 2012
at 04:31 PM

I didn't open it the whole process, I think the yellowish part was because I blend some cabbage at the beginning of the process so I guess it just fermented more quickly. The little bubbles stopped by the third or so day.. and I left it for 2 weeks. Some people explain that if you eat it when it is fermenting, the fermentation continues in your stomach and can produce some discomfort... not sure about this Do you think that open it constantly to submerge the cabbage may interrupt the fermentation process? I read you need to keep it closed for the fermentation to occur. Thank you!

4a14ce626f3855e1ca76aa111a523dc2

(15)

on August 27, 2012
at 04:22 PM

Maybe it is due to the temperature & amount? Tastes & smells like vinegar, sour.. I did a basic combination just kraut with carrot. tx!

4a14ce626f3855e1ca76aa111a523dc2

(15)

on August 27, 2012
at 04:17 PM

I left it for 2 weeks, and tastes somehow like vinegar and doesn't has any strange odor so I think it is ready! I think that the yellowish part was do to the fact that I blend some of the kraut to have more juice so I guess it just fermented more quickly than the rest and also the temperature and amount of the kraut (only half cabbage).. thank u!

4a14ce626f3855e1ca76aa111a523dc2

(15)

on August 27, 2012
at 04:15 PM

Yes, I left it for 2 weeks in the end.. I think temperature plays a key role on the time, and also the amount of cabbage you ferment.. I only used half cabbage to start. The taste is like vinegar so I think is ready :) tx for the tip!

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on August 23, 2012
at 05:52 AM

I've heard 3 days is usually sufficient, but have a taste and see. I bet it is super zingy by now.

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10 Answers

4
54f75fb54778cfa947990bec1175307a

on August 22, 2012
at 11:12 PM

Probably it is yellow at the top due to contact with air. Ideally it should be totally submerged, you need to use some weight for this.

It is ready when it stops producing little bubbles of gas and solution clears.

I don't think it can become spoiled quickly, better leave it longer. You can find out if it's ready or not by also simply tasting it - should taste.. sour :)

4a14ce626f3855e1ca76aa111a523dc2

(15)

on August 27, 2012
at 04:31 PM

I didn't open it the whole process, I think the yellowish part was because I blend some cabbage at the beginning of the process so I guess it just fermented more quickly. The little bubbles stopped by the third or so day.. and I left it for 2 weeks. Some people explain that if you eat it when it is fermenting, the fermentation continues in your stomach and can produce some discomfort... not sure about this Do you think that open it constantly to submerge the cabbage may interrupt the fermentation process? I read you need to keep it closed for the fermentation to occur. Thank you!

54f75fb54778cfa947990bec1175307a

(665)

on August 27, 2012
at 11:59 PM

I think it shouldn't be tightly closed, air is necessary for proper fermentation.

4e184df9c1ed38f61febc5d6cf031921

(5005)

on March 06, 2013
at 09:35 AM

Eugene, everything I read says that air is the enemy of sauerkraut - anaerobic fermentation is best?

C4deaa6bb01626b4569e8992890381ab

(925)

on March 06, 2013
at 09:52 AM

I'll second that, i make mine in mason jars completely sealed & never had a bad batch yet, i'm just careful to not let the pressure build up by letting a bit out once a day.

3
F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on August 23, 2012
at 01:52 AM

Taste it. My grandma used to taste her sauerkraut twice a day to see if it was ready. If you like the taste, put it away in the fridge. I would say it must be ready by now. If it is overfermented, you can add it too soups - don't throw it away.

3b031bce7c181c10452ee202e2b54dc6

(803)

on March 06, 2013
at 12:42 AM

add it to bone broths?? :-D

2
4e184df9c1ed38f61febc5d6cf031921

(5005)

on August 23, 2012
at 04:28 PM

I have fermented some for as little as a week, the last lot for 3.5 weeks. The last was lovely..... Crisp, and tangy, but without being too sour. Definitely my favourite so far,

I use a harsch crock now (http://www.culturesforhealth.com/harsch-fermenting-crock.html) but have also used a crock with a weighted saucer for some time. Prefer the harsh..

I don't think leaving it for longer will do harm, provided it isn't TOO hot. I'd take off the top layer and make sure it is submerged. Do you like the taste as it is? If so, bottle and refrigerate. If not, leave a day or so longer and taste again.

4a14ce626f3855e1ca76aa111a523dc2

(15)

on August 27, 2012
at 04:15 PM

Yes, I left it for 2 weeks in the end.. I think temperature plays a key role on the time, and also the amount of cabbage you ferment.. I only used half cabbage to start. The taste is like vinegar so I think is ready :) tx for the tip!

2
Ee70ee808f748374744404a00e1c22ed

(1163)

on August 23, 2012
at 12:02 AM

Mine gets fairly yellow as it ferments, just like pickles become olive/yellow-ish. The bubbles usually stop fairly quickly, but it will keep fermenting after that. Fermentation never really stops; it will just continue until your cabbage has become unappetizing mush. As for judging when it is ready, I just taste some periodically. There is no real "ready" stage; just whenever the flavor becomes enjoyable for you. Once it is at a spot I like, I'll just stick it in the fridge- the cooler temperature slows fermentation wayyy down, and it will keep for a very long time in there. The saltiness of your brine plays a role too- more salt, slower initial fermentation and longer keeping time in the fridge, and vice versa.

4a14ce626f3855e1ca76aa111a523dc2

(15)

on August 27, 2012
at 04:17 PM

I left it for 2 weeks, and tastes somehow like vinegar and doesn't has any strange odor so I think it is ready! I think that the yellowish part was do to the fact that I blend some of the kraut to have more juice so I guess it just fermented more quickly than the rest and also the temperature and amount of the kraut (only half cabbage).. thank u!

1
F6f2da641732d19aad1a97a776855793

on August 25, 2012
at 04:05 PM

Wow, everyone seems to have really short times for their kraut. The articles and books I have read recommend 4-6 weeks for fermentation, not a few days. It will get tangier the longer it goes. Not sure about the yellow color. Does it smell like kraut or does it smell like it has gone bad? I hope this helps and good luck.

4a14ce626f3855e1ca76aa111a523dc2

(15)

on August 27, 2012
at 04:22 PM

Maybe it is due to the temperature & amount? Tastes & smells like vinegar, sour.. I did a basic combination just kraut with carrot. tx!

1
Cfe88f41d0f90c6355a58eddbe78c9f8

on August 23, 2012
at 05:42 AM

I usually start eating mine fairly soon after it begins to ferment. I like the change in taste over time as it goes. There's no need to be worried about eating it "too soon"--if it tastes good, then it's done its job.

0
4e184df9c1ed38f61febc5d6cf031921

(5005)

on March 06, 2013
at 09:39 AM

Heather, here is a helpful link.

http://www.nourishingtreasures.com/index.php/tag/how-long-to-ferment-sauerkraut/

Now that my kitchen / house is warming up, I shall start the harsch crock sauerkraut in the kitchen for 3 days, then move it to the cold understair cupboard for about another 10 days, and hopefully be able to refrigerate it then.

The last lot I made, after reading the articles in the link I have posted above, I left for 3.5 weeks in the kitchen and wished I had bottled / refrigerated a few days earlier. It is almost too tangy for me - though it seems to assist my digestive problems far better than any previous 'krauts or kefirs ever have!!! IBS symptoms in major remission!!

0
3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on March 06, 2013
at 02:56 AM

I use two criteria to determine when kraut is ready: 1. It stops smelling like farts. (Sorry!) 2. I like the taste.

0
3b031bce7c181c10452ee202e2b54dc6

on March 06, 2013
at 12:45 AM

I used a plastic mop bucket I bought from dollar tree to ferment my kraut in, do you think that is safe/ok?

Also, there is about 3/4 an inch around the outside of my weight exposed to open air, although the brine is raised above the cabbage.

Should I be ok for my first time? How long should I let it ferment 1 week? 2? more?

3b031bce7c181c10452ee202e2b54dc6

(803)

on March 06, 2013
at 02:13 AM

its probably ok for a first time experiment though? I mean if I eat from the center and leave the outer edges... I should be alright. I will head to the container store and walmart to check into a nice big glass container I can make work. Gonna need some for pickles too!

75d65450b6ff0be7b969fb321f1200ac

(2506)

on March 06, 2013
at 01:47 AM

Personally I would leave the mop bucket to mops. Go with a ceramic or a glass container. But yes, if your cabbage is totallyly submerged you are good. And eight days of fermenting works for me if you are talking about room temperature.

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