Crock sauerkraut

Yield: 1 Servings

Measure Ingredient
50 pounds Cabbage
1½ cup Canning/pickling salt

Use pure fine-granulated canning/pickling salt to make sauerkraut and do measure the salt accurately - use a knife to level the tablespoon. The cabbage will not ferment properly if you add too much salt. To put down 50 lbs of cabbage, you will need a 10-gallon stoneware crock or a glass container (or two 4-gal. crocks).

Follow each step explicitly. You will see the word scalded repeated several times. Absolute sanitation is as important for good sauerkraut as it is for crisp pickles.

1. Remove and discard outer leaves from firm, matured heads of cabbage (late cabbage is best as it is higher in sugar). Remove and discard cores.

2. Shred 5 lbs cabbage at a time with shredder or sharp knife. Shreds should be no thicker than a dime. Place in a large mixing bowl.

3. Sprinkle 3 tblsp canning/pickling salt over each 5 lbs cabbage. Mix thoroughly with clean hands or stainless steel spoon.

4. Pack firmly and evenly into crock that has been washed with soapy water, rinsed, and scalded. Juices will form. Keep cabbage covered with juice as you pack by packing slowly and pressing cabbage down.

5. Repeat shredding and salting of cabbage in 5 lb. lots until crock is filled not more than 5" from the top.

6. Make sure juice covers cabbage. If not, making additional brine by mixing 1½ tblsp salt in 1 qt boiling water. Cool to room temperature before adding to crock.

7. Now the cabbage needs to be covered and weighted down, to keep it submerged in brine. Fit a large food-grade plastic bag inside another to make a double bag. Fill with brine solution (1 ½ tbsp salt to 1 qt water)and lay over cabbage. Bag should fit snugly against inside of crock to seal surface from exposure to air; this will prevent growth of yeast film or molds. It also serves as a weight; the amount of brine in the bag can be adjusted to give just enough pressure to keep cabbage submerged, that is, covered with brine. Twist and tie to seal bag.

8. Cover crock with plastic food wrap and then with a heavy terry towel.

Tie twine around crock to hold plastic wrap and towel in place. Do not open until fermentation time is completed.

9. Fermentation will begin the day following packing. How long it takes depends on room temperature. For best quality sauerkraut, a room temperature of 75F is ideal, and it will take about 3 weeks. For each 5 degrees cooler, add one week fermentation time. Temperature above 75F will result in earlier fermentation or possible spoilage.

10. Keep track of temperature so you know when to check kraut. Remove cover. Fermentation is complete if bubbling has stopped and no bubbles rise when crock is tapped gently.


Sauerkraut can be stored in the refrigerator. Or you can keep it in a cold room with temperature of 55For lower, if you will be using it before winter ends, or it can be canned.


If you want to make small quantities of sauerkraut, mix shredded cabbage with salt following proportions in recipe for Crock sauerkraut. Pack cabbage into glass jars and weight with brine-filled plastic bags, as in Step 7. When fermentation is complete, store covered jars in refrigerator.

Recipe By : Farm Journal's Freezing&Canning Cookbook - 1978 Posted to EAT-L Digest 31 October 96 Date: Thu, 31 Oct 1996 21:41:19 -0500 From: Bill Hatcher <bhatcher@...>

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