I packed up the sauerkraut on March 3rd, 2018 and stopped the fermentation by refrigerating it on the 1st of April 2018. Although I expected the flavors to stay the same after refrigeration, they did deepen somewhat in acidity since I refrigerated it. Nice though, not too acidic.
In fact, I would call this minced sauerkraut delicate – a delicacy I like. It’s not that I don’t like the stronger tasting sauerkrauts, it’s that I like both and now I have another option. I suspect that when somebody markets a sauerkraut relish, it will be a lot stronger tasting.
The texture was crisp, but not raw-feeling on the palate. Perfect for me.
Maybe packing it tightly, which I didn’t do in order to keep the tiny bits covered with brine creates more fermentation. Maybe the hand-pressing/squeezing of the cabbage contributes to the fermentation. No matter how clean the hands, it’s not the same as a metal blade doing the squeezing as was done with my minced sauerkraut via a food processor. The human skin contributes something, I just don’t know what. When my ribs heal, I’ll try the hand method and compare results.
For now I’m enjoying my delicate minced sauerkraut on veggie burgers and veggie hot dogs – and sometimes straight out of the jar as a spoon snack. I also drink the brine when the sauerkraut is gone. Hope that’s okay. It should be.
This was our Easter dinner believe it or not. And wow what a burger. BOCA ORIGINAL VEGGIE CHIK’N PATTIES pan-fried, topped with Tofutti Dairy-free cheese and cooked till melted, served with red onion slice and fresh tomato on a lightly toasted potato bun spread with Ball Park Mustard and veg mayo. Top the tomato slice with minced sauerkraut and we were in sauerkraut and veggie chik’n burger heaven heaven.
You don’t have to be Slavic, Germanic or Baltic to like sauerkraut, even though I’m all three and then some.
Doesn’t everybody like sauerkraut?
The big news to me recently was that sauerkraut isn’t pickled. I just naturally assumed it was due to its pickled taste. No vinegar though, just fermented cabbage.
More big news was that lots of people are making their own. Really? Why? I guess it’s like anything else, homemade usually tastes best. But more than that, lots of people are concerned about what’s going on in their digestive system and what they can do proactively to make things run smoother. Eat fermented foods is what I’m hearing.
Now I’m not a big fan of fermented anything, since I associate fermentation with bacteria and foamy moldy stuffs. But I drink beer and eat tofu and used to eat cheese. Yeah, but all those are done under strict controls and guidelines, leaving no room for error. Let me loose with fermenting anything and I could unwittingly poison myself. Besides, I’m a big fan of refrigeration so foods don’t spoil, so why would I leave food out knowing it was going to essentially spoil? And then eat it?
I’ll leave it to the experts. I don’t have all that equipment anyway. Fermenting crock pots, or something like that, and weights and next thing you know I’m operating a factory out of my little apartment. No thanks.
Still, I’m intrigued over something so mundane that everybody is doing it – and making a food that I happen to like. How difficult could it be? I have this small cabbage with nothing to do. I search for a jar big enough with a lid, but everything’s in use except a few small jars.
When I want something it’s usually now, not tomorrow or next week. My cabbage is ready and I’m ready to do something with it.
I do a little research. Man, I didn’t know people squeezed the cabbage with their hands till it bleeds water – for twenty minutes? Did I get that wrong? I have a couple cracked ribs I’m still recovering from. I have trouble opening a jar and still scream when I cough, and my jars are small. How do I fit shredded cabbage into something so small and keep it covered with salted water, without a weight?
I do know from making coleslaw that you usually can’t keep it overnight without the water from the cabbage seeping into the dressing, watering it down while the cabbage becomes limp. Yeah, but I’d have to wait overnight. Do I refrigerate it while I wait for the cabbage to bleed its water?
Okay. I have to find a way to make the cabbage bleed its water without squeezing it. My ribs won’t let me squeeze.
Use the food processor. Mince the cabbage. Make minced sauerkraut. Yeah. I like the idea. Top your veggie dog or burger with minced sauerkraut, sort of like relish. I can do that with small jars.
I remove outer leaves from a small green cabbage, remove the core, cut the cabbage into something like quarters, then slice it into strips about 3/8 inch wide.
Place in food processor and process till evenly finely chopped, scraping insides of bowl a few times.
Transfer to large bowl and add about 2 teaspoons pink Himalayan salt, then using potato slammer, press lightly (because my ribs hurt) and stir to evenly distribute and melt the salt. Let set about 1/2 hour is what I did till cabbage bleeds its water.
Make sure my jars and lids are clean, which they are. Transfer minced cabbage into jars, then evenly divide up the liquid from bottom of bowl and pour into the jars.
Now, I don’t have quite enough liquid to cover the cabbage, so I add filtered water pretty much to the top – since cabbage floats, and I don’t have weights.
I cap the jars, wipe the outsides clean and dry.
Label the jars with the date, then set them out on the bar counter to do their thing.
Next day I look and nothing appears changed. Next day after that same thing. Next day after that I lift the jars thinking I should maybe shake them to be sure all cabbage bits are covered with water. I am surprised to find the jars dripping in water, all over the bar counter and down the bar wall. They looked the same though, so where is the water coming from? The lids are screwed on tight. Are the jars broken and I didn’t see it? So much of it. The green cupboard mat they were setting on was soaked.
I figure I needed another jar, which I had, so I took some cabbage from each of the three jars to make a fourth jar, then I topped it with salted filtered water, cleaned them all up, recapped, cleaned all counter surfaces and wall and let them to their thing again.
In a few days I noticed that all the liquid had been absorbed by the cabbage bits, so I added more salted water. That’s when I went internetting again to see what I was doing wrong or what my next step should be, and if it was okay to expose the fermenting cabbage to air by cracking the lid a bit. I came across a ‘make your own sauerkraut in jars’ website and I guess all that happened was predictable.
Holly said to start tasting after a week to see if it tastes okay and that some people like it at that stage. Or you could go on for a few weeks, then refrigerate up to a year.
I tasted my ‘kraut and it had a mildly acidic pleasing taste and a crisp but not raw texture, so I figured I’d let it go for a while longer to see if it becomes more acidic. I also added a little more salt to each jar and shook them up to evenly disperse it.
That’s where I am now. No visible mold or bad smell.
This is how my Mince Sauerkraut looks on 18 March 2018
My contribution to sauerkraut is the minced part. I’ve never seen it, though that hardly means nobody has ever made it. I’m making it and publicizing it. This is my new condiment for veggie hot dogs and burgers.
Check out the website below to learn more about making sauerkraut in a jar so you don’t have to do the trial and error thing like I did.
I don’t deep fry anything. I don’t like the dangers it presents in a small living space, but also the high fat content. I reserve my deep fry cravings (if you can call them that) for eating out. This is, however, one of the ways I pan-fry tofu at home. Give it a try! The coating is gluten-free!
Makes 1 package of tofu planks – 10 for this recipe.
All you need is an electric coffee bean grinder and 5 spices. 5 Spice is somewhat like curry. Everybody who uses it has their own combination and amounts of spices they prefer. This is mine! Hope you like it!
Get out your coffee grinder and clean it up – no coffee grounds visible in the well, not even one. We’re going to grind and pulverize some seeds, then make a mix out of it, to use in a variety of applications – for home or restaurant.
To date, Rich’s is the only company I’m aware of that sells dairy-free soy-based liquid that can be whipped into the equivalent of dairy whipped cream. Check out their website to see where you can purchase it. It’s sold frozen, so look in the frozen foods department of your grocery store.
All you do is thaw it first. If you’re in a hurry and it’s frozen, then plug the sink, fill it with hot tap water and place the container in the water, turning every few minutes till it’s thawed. It doesn’t take long.
Pour it into a deep bowl and whip with beaters or a whisk. I’ve done both on many occasions and the beaters work faster.
Then use as directed in your recipe.
If desired, use a vanilla or other flavored extract. Or just use plain if adding to savory recipes.
It’s a great product, which I use every now and then for a special whipped cream effect in desserts and savory recipes. Two teaspoons of liquid or two tablespoons of whipped equals 25 calories – not bad eh?
Layers of mushroom and roasted pepper garlic and fennel tomato sauce, cooked ziti pasta and Tofutti soy ricotta and cream cheese combined with cashew crumbles and flavored with herbs and white truffle oil, all topped with Italian Panko crumbs flavored, again, with white truffle oil. Baked till steamy hot! Superb, rich, light!
Makes 20 servings (1, 8 x 8 inch and 1, 9 x 13 inch casseroles)
Hamburg is soft-textured. It’s not hard – even when cooked. These burgers replicate that texture. Isn’t it convenient to be able to take some dough from the refrigerator, form a patty and fry it? You can also bake the patties and refrigerate till ready to reheat and serve! Perfectly textured and flavored!
Great news! A homemade burger that tastes and textures just like a beef burger – blood and all! Easy to make. Fry them fresh, or bake and refrigerate or freeze. Taste The Sizzle! For meat-eaters and vegans! I’m lovin’ it!
Makes 7-8 cups burger dough (depending on how firmly packed)
Large roasted beets, cut into 1/2 inch steaks and served on a pumpernickel bun with veggie mayo, mustard, lettuce, Creamy Original Chao Cheese by Field Roast and Manicini Fried Peppers with Onion. A great way to enjoy a burger if you don’t eat animals and can’t find veggie replacement meats where you live. Made especially for you by me!
Making 1 burger at a time, from previously roasted beets
Chocolate Mousse can’t get easier than this. Perfect for restaurants that want to serve a small, elegant dessert, requiring little time and only two ingredients. Your dining guests won’t believe this mousse isn’t made from egg whites in the French tradition!
Makes as much as you want
Rich’s Whipped Non-Dairy Topping, I used 2 cups liquid
dark unsweetened cocoa powder, as desired
Pour Rich’s Whipped Non-Dairy Topping in bowl. Whip with wire whisk till it forms stiff peaks. This will take a few minutes, so take your time. Transfer to refrigerator to chill overnight.
The next day the whipped cream will be thicker. Don’t immediately stir it.
Add dark cocoa powder to taste, stirring and folding it into the whipped cream till evenly distributed. Use as much as you want.
Transfer to very small dessert dishes or small souffle cups.
Draw a flat knife over the top to create a flat, even surface. Refrigerate till ready to serve.
Notes: Once assembled and refrigerated, this mousse will last several days. It won’t separate.
It needs no additional whipped cream for topping.
The whipped topping is already sweetened, so it needs no more. It needs no vanilla either. It’s all about the chocolate, and it is so good!
Sweet yellow peppers roasted with extra virgin olive oil, then packed in jars with apple cider vinegar, fresh sprigs of rosemary, garlic and whole cloves. Use as a side dish condiment, on sandwiches, in salads (potato, bean, rice, pasta, greens) or in hot rice or bean dishes! Versatile and delicious!
Sweet, tender steamed cabbage leaves stuffed with white and brown rice mixed with a saute of peppers, celery, onion, sun-dried tomatoes and walnuts. Seasoned with garlic, basil and mint. And topped with a tomato barbecue sauce!
Lentils, green split peas, brown rice, TVP (textured vegetable protein), rolled oats and sweetened coconut take the Original Animal-Free Burger on a different, but equally delicious journey into the world of homemade veggie burgers! Something a little out of the ordinary always delights!
Dried split green peas, lentils, barley, rice and oats mixed with herbs and spices. Refrigerated overnight, then formed into patties and baked. Packed in containers for you to use when needed. Either microwave or dry-fry with lid-to-skillet, to heat and serve. Tired of mushy veggie burgers? Try these!