Not a fan of sauerkraut?
You’ll love Golden Sauerkraut! It’s chock-full of colorful veggies – you won’t even taste the cabbage!
With a sunny yellow-orange color, Golden Sauerkraut not only looks cheerful, it sparkles with the clean, bright flavor of fresh ginger and is a wonderful way to add turmeric to your diet for its proven health benefits. Inspired by a recipe for a fermented vegetable mixture from Mercola.com.
Golden Sauerkraut, or Goldenkraut, combines a basketful of nutrient-dense vegetables:
- Fresh ginger root
- Fresh turmeric root
- Habañero pepper, optional
- Golden beets
- Sweet potato
- Apple or pear
You can use powdered ginger and turmeric from your spice rack in a pinch, but if you are able to source them fresh, I highly recommend it for flavor.
Can’t find a habañero pepper? Go ahead and use another spicy pepper or 1/2 teaspoon (or more) red pepper flakes.
Cabbage plays a supportive role rather than a dominant one.
Do yourself a favor and use as many organic veggies as you can. You will need about 6 pounds (3 kg) of vegetables, weighed before you prepare them.
Keep in mind this is more of a template than a recipe, so exact amounts are not crucial.
If you have not seen or heard of golden beets, I encourage you to look for them. They are often in the produce department right next to traditional red beets. If you cannot find them, you can use red beets and make a brilliant coral-colored kraut instead.
Prep the veggies
Remove a few outer leaves of cabbage and set aside for topping the jars later.
Cut cabbage head in eighths, thinly slice, and sprinkle with salt in an extra-large (8 quart / 8 liter) bowl. Massage cabbage with your hands to incorporate the salt. The cabbage will begin releasing liquid as it sits.
Wash and prep the veggies for grating, removing any scabby portions of skin. It is okay not to peel! Peels contain fiber, nutrition, and lactobacillus bacteria that contribute to a successful ferment.
A food processor with grating disk makes grating the bulk of the veggies quick and easy. Or use a box grater instead.
Add grated veggies to the bowl as you go – and enjoy the vivid colors! Slice the celery with the slicing disk in the food processor or use a chef’s knife.
Fresh ginger, fresh turmeric root, garlic, and habañero comprise the aromatics in this recipe. They contribute incredible flavor!
The aromatics are easily minced in the food processor with the S-blade.
Mix with salt
Mix with hands until well combined, adding remaining salt. Wear a clean pair of kitchen gloves to avoid burning your skin with hot pepper. Squeeze the veggies in your hands as you mix to break down fibers or if this is too tiring for your hands set the bowl aside for 30-45 minutes and let time and salt do the work.
Pack into jars
Pack veggies into clean wide-mouth quart jars with hands, a kraut stomper, or wooden spoon. Leave 1 1/2 inches (4-5 cm) headspace. Notice the liquid rising above the veggies.
Fold reserved cabbage leaf to fit inside the jar, covering the top of the veggies. Press down until brine rises above the cabbage leaf.
Label each jar with a piece of masking tape that includes:
- Start – today’s date
- Chill – 3 days from today
- Done – 2 weeks from chill date
Add lids to jars, leaving just shy of tight for carbon dioxide to escape. Place jars on a moisture-proof tray or casserole dish in a place that maintains an even temperature between 60-75F (16-24C) and out of sunlight.
Burp jars daily by loosening the lid and then re-tightening (not all the way tight) to release pent-up carbon dioxide.
Hint: In the warmer weather of late summer and fall I place ferments on the kitchen floor where it is cooler and cover them with a towel to exclude sunlight. In cooler months, I place them in the cabinet over the fridge, which I have nicknamed my “fermentation cupboard.”
After 3 days, transfer the jars to cool storage. This can be the fridge or an unheated cool storeroom that stays cool. 45-55F (7-13C) is ideal, but my storeroom warms up to 70F (21C) in the summer and it’s fine.
Eat by the forkful
After 2-3 weeks in cool storage, the ferment is complete. Taste it! It should taste bright and refreshing with a pleasing crunch.
The easiest way to incorporate fermented vegetables into your diet is to load a fork and add it to each plate. You will appreciate the medley of flavor in every forkful of delicious fermented Goldenkraut! Your body will appreciate the probiotic digestive benefits.
Making your own staples, such as fermented vegetables, broth, cooked-from-scratch beans, and bread is a cost-effective way to add more wholesome foods to your life.
This is an intermediate fermentation recipe, not because it is difficult, but because understanding the basic process of fermenting a jar of regular sauerkraut will ensure that your experience making Goldenkraut is simple and worry-free. If you have mastered basic sauerkraut, Goldenkraut is a great next step!Print
With its sunny yellow-orange color and sparkling flavor, Golden Sauerkraut is a great way to add fermented vegetables and the proven benefits of turmeric to your life. Once you get in the habit of adding a forkful of fermented food to your plate at each meal, you will find it positively addictive!
- Prep Time: 45 min
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 3–4 quarts 1x
- Category: condiment
- Method: fermentation
- Cuisine: American
1 medium head of green cabbage
2 rounded tablespoons (30-35 g) salt (Redmond, Himalayan, or Celtic)
2 golden beets
1 orange sweet potato
3 large carrots
1 sour apple or firm, green pear
3 stalks celery
4 cloves garlic
2-inch knob of ginger
1 habanero pepper and/or, optional
2-inch piece of fresh turmeric, optional
3 grape leaves (or reserve outer cabbage leaves)
Food processor or box grater
Large cutting board
3 wide-mouth quart jars with lids, can be re-purposed
Extra-large, 7 quart, bowl
Wooden veggie tamper or wooden spoon
Moisture-proof tray or plate
Masking tape + Sharpie marker
1. Lay out all the ingredients and supplies listed and wash all the veggies. Prepare the veggies:
a. Remove outer cabbage leaves and reserve. Cut head into quarters, remove core, and slice thinly with chef’s knife. Place in bowl, sprinkle with 1 tablespoon salt.
b. If desired, peel beets and sweet potato. Using a food processor (FP) with large hole grating disk (or large holes of box grater), shred beets, sweet potato, carrots, parsnip, and apple in batches and transfer to bowl with the cabbage.
c. Switch to FP slicing disk and thinly slice celery, or use a knife.
d. Switch to S-blade, peel garlic and mince in the FP bowl with ginger, turmeric, and habanero pepper, if using. Add to cabbage mixture.
2. Sprinkle 1-2 tablespoons salt to taste over the vegetables. Massage veggies well with your hands to combine (wear gloves with habanero); let rest 15 minutes to draw juices from the vegetables.
3. Prepare your jars and lids by washing them in hot, soapy water and allowing them to air dry. Label the jars with masking tape including name of product, ingredients, start date, chill date (3 days), estimated finish date (2-3 weeks) and recipe source. You’ll thank me later 😉
4. Once vegetables are wilted by about half in volume, begin packing them firmly in the jars using the wooden tamper, your fist and/or a clean wooden spoon. Leave 2-inches headspace at the top of the jars for expansion during fermentation.
5. The natural brine formed by the vegetables and salt should rise over the veggies as you pack them in. All veggies should be submerged. Top the vegetables with a clean grape leaf or cabbage leaf, tucking the edges down into the sides of the jar so that the liquid rises over the leaf.
6. Add lids to jars without tightening them fully. Place jars on moisture-proof tray or plate and set in a 60-75°F (16-24 C) spot out of direct sunlight, but convenient enough for you to keep an eye on. I like to keep fermentation projects on my kitchen counter during the winter and in our home’s interior hallway during the summer to maintain even temperature.
7. “Burp” the jars every day by loosening the lid and then retightening to release pent up carbon dioxide. As the kraut begins to ferment you will see tiny bubbles rise in the jars. Some brine may spill over onto the tray, this is normal. After 3 days, move the Goldenkraut to the fridge and chill for 2-3 weeks before eating. When it’s done is up to you! Goldenkraut should be tangy, pleasantly sour and not overtly salty when done. It should taste good to you. If it tastes raw or sharp, let it mellow a few days longer in the fridge and taste again. Enjoy within 3-6 months.
Yield: 3-4 quarts
To serve: Add a generous forkful (about 2 tablespoons) to your plate with each meal and enjoy the appetite-sharpening flavor and probiotic digestive benefits!
If possible, do yourself a favor and try to secure as many as you can organic vegetables for this ferment. I begin with about 6 pounds of veggies, but don’t worry about exact sizes and weights of ingredients, this is more of a template than a recipe.
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