View Full Version : Homemade kraut

Feb 6th 2012, 06:03 PM
Last October I got out my late Grandfathers 6 gal. kraut crock out, called my parents and borrowed Grandpa's kraut cutter. Grandpa made one many moons ago. He would be 104 now so the cutter is well over 70 years old. He made it using birds eye maple. After 70 years of use it is still beautiful. Birds eye maple is a beautiful wood. So, I bought 20 pounds of cabbage and made kraut. I could see Grandpa standing there with a big smile on his face. Keeping an lost art alive!

My brother is into woodworking. He asked me a month ago for ideas on wood projects. I said I like a kraut cutter like grandpa's. Well, he has started a wood working website. The site is still "under construction" but tonight he posted pics of the cutter he is making me. Going to look really nice and I'm looking forward to making many pounds of sauerkraut and one day pass it on to my Grandchildren. http://www.creeativewoodworking.com/ If you like his site let him know. More pictures to come!

Feb 6th 2012, 07:21 PM
I've got one that I bought in Wisconsin many years ago. We make about 5 gallon of kraut each year.

It didn't look as if he had enough wood to make the slide box and lid. Is he going to use another wood for them?

I'm not a wood worker, but he does have a nice looking shop.

Feb 6th 2012, 08:06 PM
yes, there will be enough for the slide box. He still has to install the knives.

Feb 7th 2012, 03:34 AM
We make kraut a lot here. It seems one of the things that grows really well here is cabbage. Of course, we cheat and put chunks of cabbage into the food processor. We have a 3-gal crock. We bought a wooden insert (http://www.lehmans.com/store/Home_Goods___Barrels__Kegs_and_Crocks___Wooden_Sau erkraut_Boards___krautBoards#101011103111041110511 ) and wooden tamper (http://www.lehmans.com/store/Home_Goods___Barrels__Kegs_and_Crocks___Wooden_Sau erkraut_Stomper___421221#421221) from Lehman Brothers that work really well. When we first made some, I was really surprised how easy it was. Considering it's $5 for a small jar at the store, it's worth the time and effort to make it. :)

Feb 7th 2012, 12:05 PM
I love that! I make a mixed coleslaw/salad from my red cabbage, but one day I may try saurkraut. :D

Feb 14th 2012, 09:06 PM
I have tried making saurkraut and havent had much luck at it. My grandmother and aunt both made it before they got to old to do it. After eating theres you wouldnt want the store bought. I would have loved to learn how they done it but was young at the time and had other things on the mind. How about some of you sharing your techniques and recipes for making successful kraut.

Feb 14th 2012, 09:39 PM
Shred about 3 inches of cabbage in a crock. Add about a fistful of salt. Pound the cabbage with the end of a baseball bat, firmly, but lightly, like churning, so as to not break the crock, until juice covers the cabbage,

Repeat, repeat, repeat, until the crock is 3 to 6 inches from full, tasting along the way. The taste should be salty, but not a strong salt taste.

Lay a plate or similar on top to keep the cabbage below the surface of the juice. Tie a cloth over the crock to keep knats and flys out.

Taste daily until desired flavor is reached.My wife likes 5 days, I like 7 to 9 days.

Remove kraut and can in boiling water bath for 15 minutes.

PS. If you like strong kraut, you can leave it in the crock indefinitely.

Feb 14th 2012, 11:32 PM
So thats where I went wrong. 3 weeks was a little long. :D We actually have several different size crocks. I collect western crocks made in monmouth illinios this is where my great great grandfather was born and raised. Also the home and birth place and home of Wyatt Earp. Monmouth was a town of 2000 people. They was living there at the same time my family was. Even though the Earps moved in and out of town frequently. I got a copy of the newspaper obituary of Wyatts only sister who passed away from the fever. Her obit is above my great great grandfathers sister who died the same day from the same outbreak. Anyhow back to kraut. Going to have to try it again soon. Or hijack a jar from someone on the forum that makes it. :thumbsup: :beg:

Feb 15th 2012, 08:03 PM
I made my kraut in a 6gal crock that was my Grandfathers. Shred, salt, shred, salt. But, I let it go for a month. put it in quart size freezer bags a froze. Dang, now I'm hungry..

Feb 16th 2012, 12:11 AM
We put chopped cabbage into a giant bowl and add salt. The salt will start drawing out the water. After we get the crock 3/4 full, we make a brine and finish covering the cabbage. Put a plate on top of the cabbage to keep it pushed down below the surface of the brine. It is handy to fill a ziplock with the brine to weight down the plate, and in case there's a leak, it will be brine that goes into the crock from the ziplock. We usually let ours go 3 or 4 weeks. It does best at around 70F. Cooler temperatures take longer. We put plastic wrap around the top of the crock and lay a towel over it to keep the light out.