Sauerkraut is white fermented raw cabbage. The taste is sour and it is a thousands of years old way to preserve food during winter-time. It’s full of healthy goodness and one of the best foods to eat for a strong immune system.
I personally love Sauerkraut. In Italy we call them crauti. Raw white cabbage fermented thanks to a brine, full of healthy lactic acid bacteria, pure food for gut bacteria.
The Roman writer Cato already mentioned the way of preserving cabbage with salt. This kind of preserving food maybe was brought from China to Europe. The German word is confusing because many think it is originally from there.
This easy to make side dish is also packed with health benefits. A high percentage of vitamins and minerals (it was used against scurvy for seamen for example as it has a good amount of vitamin c and vitamin k), it is a perfect immune booster, it helps your many gut bacteria to be balanced, it is high in antioxidant properties and helps with leaky gut and even cancer.
There are many ways to prepare or preserve the raw white cabbage. Simply in brine for example. The typical German Sauerkraut has bay leaves, caraway, juniper berries and white wine. I sometimes had cabbage with shredded carrots pickled and more as a salad than a side dish. I made mine in brine just with bay leaves, orange and apple slices. I saw a recipe with grated ginger, also a super bomb of health. I have to try with pomegranate the next time.
In Germany they eat Sauerkraut cooked with pork and potatoes. Also sausage I think is a good partner. I like an egg with it as well.
Some fun? When I was in Mexico many years ago I stayed with a family. They were wonderful people and pampered me a lot. One of the always very delicious meals was with red cabbage. As I know red cabbage as a sweeter way, just cooked and not fermented, I was happily putting my fork full of red cabbage in my mouth expecting a certain taste. But it tasted like Sauerkraut. It was so difficult to except that taste to what my eyes suggested my brain. I learnt than how much we ‘eat with our eyes’.
If you make them these days it will be ready to eat for the new year. A good start to help your holiday gut back to a healthy balance!
Feed your Gut!