Over a Cup of Coffee: Making sauerkraut, Part II
Boy, did I goof! When I wrote about making sauerkraut last week I must have been half awake. Louise Irvine’s full name did not appear in the column, and then I got her father’s name wrong, too. I thought I heard “Gayle,” but instead it is “Dale.” So, to set the record straight, Louise’s parents were the late Dale and Edna Mae Brannan, of Maybell, and her grandmother was Alice Brannan, who gave the sauerkraut recipe to Louise in 1972. It was in a “Farm Journal’s Country Cookbook.”
I apologize, Louise! Thanks for sending the recipe.
Last week’s column featured Part I of the “Glass-Jar Sauerkraut” recipe, which ended with Step 5, in which the jars were filled. You will need to put last week’s recipe “card” with this one to have the complete directions.
Glass-Jar Sauerkraut, Part II
• Set the filled jars in a shallow pan or on folded newspapers — the brine may overflow during fermentation. Keep at room temperature (70 degrees) for top-quality sauerkraut.
• Skim the film every few days if it forms. If directions have been followed carefully and correct temperature maintained, little or no film should form.
• Keep cabbage covered with brine. If necessary, add more weak brine, made by dissolving 1 ½ tablespoons of salt in 1 quart of water.
• Let ferment about 10 days or until liquid settles and bubbles no longer rise to the surface. Remove the cheesecloth and wood strips and add more weak brine if needed. Some women fix 1 extra quart of cabbage for every 4 quarts to use in refilling jars when fermentation ends and shrinkage occurs.
• If sauerkraut is to be used soon, wipe mouths of jars and seal tightly; keep in a cool place. If it is to be stored longer than a few weeks, remove lids and set jars in a pan of cold water. Water should extend to the shoulder of jars. Bring water slowly to a boil; then remove jars. Add boiling weak brine to sauerkraut, if needed to fill the jar from within ½ inch from the top. (To make brine, dissolve 1 ½ tablespoons of salt to 1 quart of water.) Wipe off jar rims. Adjust lids. Process in a boiling water bath (212 degrees) 30 minutes for quart jars. Remember to check current home canning safety directions for preserving sauerkraut.
• Remove jars from canner and complete seals unless closures are the self-sealing type.
Note: For 20 to 25 pounds of cabbage, use ½ pound of salt. Makes eight to 10 quarts.
Courtesy of Louise Irvine, of Craig. From “Farm Journal’s Country Cookbook”
If you have a recipe that you would like to share with readers, please call me at 970-824-8809 or write to me at PO Box 415, Craig 81626.
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Next week, Colorado Northwestern Community College and Moffat County are hosting a free day-long seminar for local ranchers and agriculture producers.