Jan 31, 2009
After a month of sitting in the basement, I now have a very large amount of sauerkraut at the ready.
At first the cabbage simply smelled of flatulence and fermenting, but after about two and a half weeks that changed over into the more acidic and biting smell of the sauerkraut you're probably accustomed to. Apparently the bacteria that are active in the kraut come in waves: the first wave produces a less pleasant odor and slowly starts to raise the acidity of the brine; this kills off the first batch and allows a different strain of bacteria to take over (preferring the more acidic environment). With the new bacteria comes a new smell and taste. Our last batch of kraut was sweet in flavor, but this is tangy like it should be.
Next time I would definitely shred the cabbage using a grater for finer strips (this batch is a little too substantial).
Next up: kim chi