Harvesting and processing cabbages and carrots

After the first night frost I wasn’t too worried about the cabbages, since they have a cover, but since it is getting colder the cabbages do not really grow any more. So I planned in to harvest and process them.

After going around in the garden I only found 4 small heads I could process, so I decided to harvest a bunch of carrots as well. We had just eaten the last of our fermented carrots and I really needed to make some more.

After harvest I started with cutting up the cabbages. I used the white cabbages to make sauerkraut, since my son only wants sauerkraut from the white cabbage and not from the red. I mixed in the salt and let it sit for an hour or so before working the cabbages to get some liquid out. Then I packed it in a glass. A smaller glass would have done. Since we are completely out of sauerkraut at the moment I will have to buy some cabbages to make a useful amount of sauerkraut.

The carrots I only washed thoroughly, cut of some bad spots and cut into strips. I had enough for 2 glasses in which I packed the carrots tight. Pouring enough saltwater to cover the carrots and these are done. I put the glasses into our barn to ferment. In a few weeks we will be able to enjoy our ferments again.

For diner I cooked the red cabbage and added some leftover beef and some herbs. Easy and tasty. (I forgot to make a picture of this meal)

Sauerkraut & fermenting carrots

Creating new supplies

As I wrote in my post “First time fermenting vegetables” I wanted to make new fermented vegetables soon. I was grocery shopping und got a small cabbage and some carrots. For the carrots I need to prepare Saltwater. The water gets boiled and I mixed 800 ml water with 2 Tablespoons of salt. This needs to cool before using (the glass on the right).

First of all I cut the cabbage very thin (and of course removed the stalk). I weight the cabbage and added 2% of the weight of the cabbage as salt. This was mixed thoroughly and put aside for about an hour to make it easier for myself.

So now to prepare the carrots. I peel the carrots and cut them into sticks. Now the carrots are layered as compact as possible in the glass. Poor in the saltwater until the carrots are submerged. I put a smaller lid inside the glass directly on the carrots to keep them submerged. A lid on top and the carrots are done. I only used half of the saltwater I prepared and hat bought enough carrots, so I made a second glass with carrots.

Now back to the cabbage. The salt did its work and there already is a bit of liquid on the bottom of the pot. Now to knead and stump some more liquid out of the cabbage before filling the cabbage tight in a glass. Pore in all the liquid and again I lay a smaller lid inside the glass on the cabbage, to prevent it from floating. The liquid was not quite enough, so I pored in some boiled and cooled water. Put a lid on and the cabbage is ready to turn into sauerkraut.

Normally I always see people use these fermenting lids, or put a lose lid on the glass, but I saw a German video where the glasses where closed like this. Inside these closed glasses the oxygen is used up while the vegetables are fermenting, but pressure building up still can escape. This way the vegetables get preserved for long time storage, because they do not have to go into the refrigerator when they are finished fermenting. Of course after opening a glass this needs to be kept in the refrigerator until empty. This way I can, when the garden is producing, prepare ferments as I have time and the vegetables are fresh for use all winter long without filling up an entire refrigerator.

Now all we have to do is wait until the ferments are finished fermenting and prepare the next batch in a few weeks, so we will not run out.

And don’t forget to put the glasses in some sort of a tray. While fermenting it can always happen that some liquid is pressed out of the glass.

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