Kitchen Play & Sauerkraut
I have a day to just putter around the house. I took care of some paperwork and laundry before heading to the kitchen. I made a blueberry buckle for tonight's dessert and the kids breakfast tomorrow. I made a batch of rosemary pesto that will dress some pasta as a side dish for tonight's chicken. I ended with a batch of sauerkraut. I've made many versions in the past and no two are exactly alike. This one was based on a recipe by Brittany Wood Nickerson of Thyme Herbal in her book The Herbalist's Kitchen. She makes a purple cabbage sauerkraut filled with dulse flakes and sesame seeds that really tickled me the first time I made it. Today's version had similar ingredients but played off of what I had on hand from the farmer's market.
1/4 cup of sesame seeds
1 small head of green cabbage,slightly larger than a softball
1/2 head of radicchio
1/2 head of savoy cabbage
a handful of garlic scapes
4 cloves of garlic
1/2 cu kombu flakes
a bunch of parsley, chopped
2 tsp. sea salt
Start by toasting the sesame seeds in a dry pan until they start to brown. Remove from the heat and let cool. Meanwhile, cut the cabbages and radicchio into thin slices and add to a bowl. Chop the garlic scapes, garlic and parsley and add to the bowl. Add the kombu, sesame seeds and salt. Massage for ten minutes or so and let rest.
Massage for another 10 minutes and fill a half gallon mason jar. You will see the liquid being released from the cabbage.
Pack the mixture down tight. The juice should come above the cabbage mixture. If not you can make a brine and pour that on top (see below).
Weigh the mixture down with a small plate and a weight on top of it or put a zip lock bag on top of the mixture and fill with water. The idea is to keep the cabbage mixture below the liquid so it doesn't mold. Let sit on the counter a week or more. Taste a little to see if it's to your liking. I tend to let mine sit 4 to 6 weeks at least. Enjoy!
Brine: 1 Tbsp. Salt & 2 Cups Water. Add salt to a quarter cup of water and stir until dissolved. Stir in the rest of the water. Use as much brine as you need to cover the cabbage mixture by an inch.