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Kraut making questions

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#1 coldone OFFLINE  



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Posted June 15, 2016 - 06:51 PM

I want to try to make kraut this year. What are yall using for the crock? I have looked at the fermenting crocks online and I think there has to be a cheaper way.

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#2 HDWildBill OFFLINE  


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Posted June 15, 2016 - 07:23 PM

I'm also interested in Making Kraut,  The recipe I got talked about using wide mouth mason jars to make the Kraut.  The wife picked up a 6 pack of 1 Gallon Mason Jars so now I need to find the time to make me some Kraut.  We have a friend who makes it and boy is it good!

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#3 gopher OFFLINE  


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Posted June 15, 2016 - 07:31 PM

Not sure how pricey crocks are but Gainger has food grade 15 gal barrels for around $94.00 . If thats any better price.

Edited by gopher, June 15, 2016 - 07:31 PM.

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#4 lyall OFFLINE  



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Posted June 15, 2016 - 07:54 PM

sometimes you can find them at auctions

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#5 johndeereelfman OFFLINE  


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Posted June 15, 2016 - 08:32 PM

Around here, we use crocks that are anywhere between 15 quart to 30 quart. As lyall said, they can easily be found at local auctions and yard sales. 


The mason jars don't come into play until you are ready to can the kraut. All of the cabbage is sliced and salted and put into the crocks, then stomped with a wooden stomp until the water rises above each layer of kraut. If memory serves me correctly, I believe you use a cup of salt for every six pounds of cabbage used. Once you make your first batch, you will have to determine if more or less salt should be added or deducted the next time. There really isn't a set recipe, you just doctor it up as meets your desired taste.


When the crock is about 3/4 full, you lay two layers of full cabbage leaves over top of the last layer of sliced cabbage, then cover with burlap, then lay a large enough dinner plate on top that will fit the inside of your crock. Let the crock sit for six weeks in a damp area of your basement, garage, or ground cellar. It will eventually start to stink, so keep that in mind when you are determining where you want to sit the crock for the next six weeks. After the sixth week of fermenting, remove the plate, burlap and full leaf pieces. You may have to remove some of the kraut as well, at least down until you hit the good stuff! 


Fill your mason jars and start the canning process, or you can just fill freezer bags full and put right into the freezer. Kraut doesn't have to be canned and sealed. In fact, many of us will eat some of it rawl, right out of the crock once the fermented stuff is removed. 


Good Luck and Enjoy!!!!

Edited by johndeereelfman, June 17, 2016 - 05:47 PM.

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#6 David Brown OFFLINE  

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Posted June 15, 2016 - 08:56 PM

To be honest, we just use a plastic tub that you can buy for a couple bucks at WalMart.  We used to use a crock and have noticed no difference in the kraut.  The best thing is you can put the lid tight to keep everything clean.

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#7 skyrydr2 ONLINE  



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Posted June 16, 2016 - 03:44 AM

I made the stuff for the first time last fall, it did get stinky, but just a little, and I kept the foamy "scum" off every day so that kept it from being stinky. I kept mine in the kitchen just so I could service it easy, it was easy to make and you can taste it as it matures to keep the salt level to your liking.
And I don't even like kraut but it was pretty good, the wife loves it ( 100% russian) . I love to make pickles and relish of all kinds so it was only fitting i try cabbage sooner or later LOL.
If you use something that seals up tight make sure it has an air lock device or you could blow the vessel up from gasses made during fermentation. I needed to add salty brine a few times to mine to keep it under the liquid this way you dont loose as much to the scumm .
Ill make it again this year if we get a good crop of cabbage, and use the layers of leaves as a barrier too , thanks Elfman for that tip.
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Posted June 16, 2016 - 04:06 AM

Lots of folks around here make Turnip kraut.

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#9 oldedeeres OFFLINE  

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Posted June 17, 2016 - 01:08 AM

I use an old 3 gal. crockery cream churn for kraut, leaving it in the kitchen for the same reasons Skyrydr2 does. To help avoid the scum and keep the smell down, try half filling a plastic bag with water and placing it on top of the kraut. It will mold itself to the top of the cabbage and seal it in, avoiding evaporation and curious canines.   :smilewink:

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#10 coldone OFFLINE  



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Posted June 17, 2016 - 05:47 AM

I think I found a good alternative. Lowes Home improvement has food grade 5gal buckets for $5 each and the Gama lids for $7.50. I bought 2 of each. I just have to drill a small hole in the gamma lid and install a bubbler. I might get that done this weekend and get some pics. Cabbage wont be here till next week.

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#11 FrozenInTime OFFLINE  

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Posted June 18, 2016 - 11:18 AM

I also use Lowe's buckets, they r cheap.  I use them once then make use of buckets in the barn.  I buy new buckets every year.  I don't use lids, I cover with towels.  Skim the top scum off as needed.  Makes some great kraut.

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