Google+ What I Made Today: Ginger and Pepper Kraut

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Ginger and Pepper Kraut

This week's CSA share from Dineberg's Farm delivered, among other things, a lovely cabbage, and I decided to ferment it so it might be enjoyed for weeks (and weeks), as other farm-n-garden goodness come ripe.

I created a ginger 'n' pepper kraut, making use of what I had on hand. Now, if you follow me at all, you know that I'm really not a recipe user/follower, and this is most true when it comes to summer fermenting, when I'm using what's fresh out of the garden, from the CSA or the farmers' market, and what I have on hand.

For this not-quite-half-gallon batch I used:
a head of cabbage
three carrots (for color and sweetness)
grated ginger (a couple inches - just a piece that I wanted to use
fresh cracked black pepper
red pepper flakes
kosher salt
… and you can use whatever you have on hand and whatever tickles your taste buds.

I sliced the cabbage, shredded carrots and grated the ginger (all organic) and tossed it all into a large stainless bowl. I added salt to the mix "to taste" and massaged the the vegetables to get the salt well blended. At this point I took a coffee break and allowed the mix to begin the water extraction aspect of the process without me. I do this a lot, allowing mama Nature to do her thing without interference from me. It's one of the reasons that so many "permaculture" concepts resonate with me. But that's another story.

After my coffee break I nibbled the mix and added a bit more salt, again—to taste, and massaged it in and worked the vegetables to release more of their natural fluids. To this I added some fresh cracked black pepper and hot pepper flakes, not measured, just trusting my intuition. I added it all to a half-gallon jar, handful by handful, pressing down the vegetables and rising up the liquid between each handful. I filled a half-pint jelly jar with water, capped it and used it to weigh down the vegetables below the fluid. I covered it with a linen napkin and secured with a rubber band (to keep "unwanteds" out).

This will sit on my kitchen counter for a few/several days and I'll be tasting it daily. Once it reaches the tang that suits me, I'll put it all in cool storage, and enjoy some beautiful, delicious, living food daily, on bread, as a side-dish, in salads, mixed with vegetables, grains, meats … whatever!

So, yeah, that's what I made today.


Sharkbytes said...

Sounds tangier than what I could tolerate, but it sure is pretty.

Tammie Lee said...

that sounds wonderful Rose
i can tell it is something i need as well
so you have inspired me

do you think it is good to put a little kraut that i bought in the mix to get it going? or best to let it do it's thing naturally?

rose of Walk in the Woods - she/her said...

It is pretty, isn't it, Sharkbytes? And the tanginess really depends on the length of fermentation. The longer you ferment, the more sour it becomes.

And Tammie Lee, unless the purchased kraut is unpasteurized it won't have any live cultures to promote the process. I find letting it do its thing naturally to work magnificently!

Healing Woman said...

My sister-in-law, also a Rose, has just started canning. I am going to turn her on to your blog and also show her this amazing recipe. Thanks so much for sharing.

Kim said...

Rose...this looks and sounds divine. I love having that little extra homemade in the fridge to add some zip to an average meal.Thanks for sharing.

Tammie Lee said...

thank you, that makes sense.


GlorV1 said...

Wonderful. Easy as pie and tastes just as good I'm sure. I just made some English cucumbers in vinegar with onions, garlic, a little sugar, pepper corns and it sits in my frig for snacking. Thanks for this great post.

Dawn Hill said...

How pretty! Makes me want to grab my mixed media stuff and create!