Sauerkraut is a traditional fermented cabbage food that is simple and easy to make. Sauerkraut is full of naturally occurring, gut healing probiotics. If you are in the process of healing your gut or you’re simply looking for a way to get in more probiotics, sauerkraut is an easy option you can make in your own kitchen.
How Does Sauerkraut Heal the Gut?
Traditional Sauerkraut is usually just salt and cabbage, but I have jazzed up the recipe below using extra vegetables and spicy flavors. The good atmospheric bacteria in our homes grows and helps produce lactic acid during the fermentation process. When you hear bacteria, it is easy to be alarmed, but don’t me. Fermented foods are made with good bacteria that is essential for our gut flora.
Sauerkraut, a Traditional Dish
Before convenience style cooking and lifestyles became part of our modern culture, many families thrived on the food preservation style of fermentation. Many traditional cultures and families, fermented their vegetables using salt and spices, knowing that the fermentation process wont prevent the vegetables from rotting. Plus, it became a way for families to keep their families fed throughout winter when crops were limited.
The fermentation process of sauerkraut is very similar to other alike dishes like kimchi (Korean fermented cabbage and vegetables) and cortido (Latin America fermented cabbage).
Sally Fallon writes about lacto-fermentation in her book Nourishing Traditions:
The proliferation of lactobacilli in fermented vegetables enhances their digestibility and increases vitamin levels. These beneficial organisms produce numerous helpful enzymes as well as antibiotic and anti carcinogenic substances. Their main by-product, lactic acid, not only keeps vegetables and fruits in a state of perfect preservation but also promotes the growth of healthy flora throughout the intestine.
Is it Easy to Make Sauerkraut?
At first it can seem intimidating to make your own fermented foods at home. I believe sauerkraut is an easy recipe to start with if you are trying to incorporate more traditional and/or fermented items in your home.
Sauerkraut is simple to make and enjoyable on salads, burgers, or even as a tangy snack all on its own.
Another recommendation I would make is to use organically grown cabbage and vegetables. Conventionally grown produce is grown using harmful pesticides and chemicals. It seems contradicting to make such nourishing foods with vegetables that have been sprayed or treated with harmful chemicals.
Spicy Sauerkraut Recipe
I put this recipe together using a traditional sauerkraut (cabbage/salt) recipe. Because I prefer tang and spice, I had some extra vegetables and spices to take it up a notch. the combination of radish, onion, a little ginger, and carrots, helps add a unique flavor to the dish.
If you enjoy spicy and you’re looking for another way to naturally support your body and immune system, you would love my recipe for fire cider here.
Spicy Vegetable Sauerkraut
- 2heads organic cabbage, cored and shredded
- 1cup carrots, chopped
- 3-4 green onions, choppedInclude both the white and green tops
- 3/4cups radish, choppedI used watermelon, but any radish will do
- 4cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 Tablespoon ginger, peeled and diced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
- 4Tablespoons sea salt or Himalayan salt