Canning: Collard Kraut

I was thinking about doing another batch of pickled collards with my harvested collards, last weekend, but I thought it might be interesting to try collard kraut, instead. I have an interest in the probiotic opportunity with fermented foods, but, aside from sourdough, I haven’t ventured deeply into it. I tried my own cider vinegar made of apple scraps, but after a promising start, didn’t get anywhere. I also tried to make my own ginger soda, without success.

But this recipe sounded interesting, and Mom likes sauerkraut. I’m interested in whether the probiotics from homemade sauerkraut might not be a good thing for our systems— the steady infusion of probiotics on the Arbonne cleanse were something I really liked about it (so much so that I made sure she got them all, and I supplemented on my own with lower quality things.)

This made me a little uneasy, because there’s not a recipe per se. I used an indeterminate number of greens— a mess, as you might say. Just whatever I was harvesting. I’m in the habit of taking the stems out of collards, so I did. Loosely packed, it was about 3/4 of the big, sanitized jar I had. I did a couple of tart apples, skin on (I read in another recipe that they break down too much if you peel them.) I had a quarter of a cup of diced onion laying around from something else and threw it in on principle.

It looks like the brine is one ounce of salt to God knows how much water, so I was generous salting my (filtered, not bottled) water, and with salting the greens, and I used a shot glass to measure it in both cases, because my dry measuring systems aren’t measured in ounces, and weighing an ounce on my scale is also not a thing. I do know that a shot glass is not a dry measure of an ounce, but a tablespoon just felt like not enough salt. If I’m preserving something, I’d rather use too much salt than too little, and there was no way to know one way or the other. The whole thing feels like a crap shoot to me. It occurs to me that too much salt might make fermentation a challenge— let’s just embrace the unknowable, here.

I liked the idea of weighing the greens down with a bag of brine— it seemed way less strange than sanitizing a rock, which was a frequent suggestion I saw.

They’ve been fermenting out of direct sunlight for about 6 days now, and they’re slightly less vibrant looking than they were on day 1, but otherwise, not a lot to report. I don’t see a scum or anything forming on top (thank the Lord) and I’ll be honest, tasting them soon seems like something I’d do as a result of a dare, but I guess no guts, no glory.

I’ll let you know how they turn out if/when I have more info…


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