Sauerkraut is a wonderful food: an immune booster, cancer fighter and digestion enhancer that will help maintain a balance of healthy bacteria in the colon. Like raw cabbage and all cruciferious vegetables (e.g., broccoli, cauliflower,Brussel sprouts), sauerkraut is rich in essential nutrients such as Vitamins C, A and K, iron, etc., but the fermentation process makes these nutrients more available by breaking them down into highly digestible form. The fermentation also produces isothiocyanates, which, recent studies have shown, help prevent the growth of cancer. Commercial brands of sauerkraut are usually loaded with salt, but no salt is necessary when you make your own.
- 1 large cabbage, green or red, finely shredded
- 2 medium carrots, grated
- A few cups of water (preferably distilled)
- 1 heaping teaspoon whole juniper berries, crushed between fingers just before adding
- A food processor would be the easiest way to shred the cabbage and carrots. In a large size crock pot, alternate layers of cabbage, carrots and crushed juniper berries.
- Pour water over the vegetables, just enough to cover. Place a dish on top that fits inside the crockpot. Press a heavy weight (like a rock or a jug filled with water) over the dish and cover with a dish towel.
- Place the crock in a dry, warm room, preferably 65-70 degrees F., for 4-6 days. Check the water level daily, adding more if the vegetables are not covered with the weight pressing down on top. Taste to see if it has the desired tangy fermented flavor.
- When the taste is right, put the sauerkraut and juice into glass jars and store in the refrigerator where it will keep for several weeks or more.