Ferment that cabbage and carrots and feed your gut bacteria

I had never given fermented food much thought, until I began specialising in gut health. Your gut is a complex tube with interconnecting organs, that work independently or collaboratively and believe it or not is connected to your brain. Its true, if your feeling uplifted and happy, so too will your gut… crazy isn’t it but fascinating.
So, like many of my blog followers I have up and down days, sadly thats just the way many of our lives are today. yet when you are feeling sluggish and down beat, so is your gut. That means your digestive process is slower than usual, absorption of nutrients is not as efficient and elimination, well that can be a pain in the bottom….literally.

There are many methods on the internet to help boost your mood, feed your gut etc etc, but this simple recipe can boost your mood and gut at the same time.

Sauerkraut… yes lacto-fermented brine filled with cabbage, carrots and spices…. 

It is packed healthy bacteria for your gut, when your gut is happy the happy hormone ‘serotonin’ is produced …. so your mood improves.

This recipe was taken from https://www.makesauerkraut.com

You Will Need
Ingredients
  • 1 medium head fresh green cabbage
  • 2-3 carrots
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon Sea salt
Equipment
  • Kitchen scale or use given volume measurements
  • Cutting board and chef’s knife
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Vegetable peeler, grater and measuring spoon
  • 1 quart (liter) wide-mouth canning jar
  • 4 ounce (125 ml) “jelly” canning jar or other “weight”
  • Wide-mouth plastic storage cap, or use the lid and rim that comes with jar
Instructions
1 SET UP: Gather Supplies and Set Up Scale
Using a scale to make your sauerkraut will ensure that you add the correct amount of salt for a safe fermentation environment. You don’t want to include the weight of your bowl in your measurements, so either zero out the scale (usually done with a button on a digital scale or a knob under the tray on a mechanical scale) or write down the weight of your bowl.
2 CHOP: Prep Your Vegetables and Cabbage
You will need 1¾ pounds (28 ounces, 800 grams) of vegetables and cabbage in your bowl.
When making sauerkraut, you first prepare the flavoring ingredients – carrots, ginger, radish, caraway seeds or whatnot – then add sliced cabbage. This allows you to add only as much sliced cabbage as necessary to hit 1¾ pounds on the scale.
Peel and grate carrots, mince garlic and place in your bowl. 
Discard the limp outer leaves of the cabbage, setting aside one of the cleaner ones for use during the SUBMERGE step.
Quarter, then slice cabbage crosswise into thin ribbons. 
Add sliced cabbage to your bowl until the weight of your vegetables and cabbage is 1¾ pounds (28 ounces, 800 grams).
3 SALT: Create Your Brine.
Salt pulls water out of the cabbage and vegetables to create an environment where the good bacteria (mainly lactobacillus) can grow and proliferate and the bad bacteria die off.
Sprinkle vegetables and cabbage with 1 tablespoon of salt and mix well.
If you want the salt to do some of the work for you, you can leave your salted and well-mixed bowl of cabbage sit for 20-60 minutes.
Then, massage the vegetables with strong hands until moist, creating the brine. You should be able to tilt the bowl to the side and see a good-sized puddle of brine, about 2–3 inches in diameter. This process can take anywhere from 2 to 5 minutes.
4 PACK: Pack Mixture into Jar.
Now that you have a puddle of brine, it’s time to pack the cabbage mixture into your jar.
Grab handfuls of the salty, juicy cabbage mixture and pack them into your quart-sized wide-mouth canning jar, periodically pressing the mixture down tightly with your fist or a large spoon so that the brine rises above the top of the mixture and no air pockets remain.
Be sure to leave at least 1 inch of space between the top of the cabbage and the top of the jar. Because we weighed out just the right amount of cabbage to fit in your jar, this should happen automatically.
Pour any brine left in your mixing bowl into the jar.
Lastly, wipe down the outside of your jar and push down any loose bits stuck to the sides of the bowl or the side of your jar.
5 SUBMERGE: Hold Ferment Below Brine
Now make sure your fermenting mixture is in a safe anaerobic (no air) environment. This means that you need to keep the cabbage mixture submerged in the brine while it ferments. 
Floaties Trap. Take that cabbage leaf you saved during the SETUP step. tear it down to just fit in the jar, and place it over the surface of the packed cabbage. Forgot to save a cabbage leaf? No problem. You can fold a narrow piece of parchment paper to size or even cut an old plastic lid to size. 
To hold the mixture below the brine, place the 4-ounce jelly jar on top of the cabbage leaf, right side up with its lid removed. 
Lightly (to allow for escape of CO2 gases), screw on the white plastic storage lid.
Label jars using green or blue painter’s tape and a permanent marker. Note the flavor of sauerkraut and the date you started fermenting.
6 FERMENT: Ferment for 1 to 4 Weeks
Time now for the friendly bacteria to do their work while you watch and wait. Can you wait 7 days to taste the tangy crunch?Place your jar of fermenting sauerkraut in a a shallow bowl (to catch the brine that may leak out during the first week of fermentation), out of direct sunlight.
Should the brine level fall (very unlikely) and remain below the level of the sauerkraut during the first week dilute 1 Tbsp of salt in 2 cups of water and pour some of this brine over the sauerkraut (removing the little jar first) until it just covers the mixture. Put the little jar back in, screw the lid on lightly and let the fermentation continue.
Don’t worry if the brine disappears after the 7- to 10-day mark. By this time, you’ve created a safe environment in which the bacteria that would cause mold or slime has been chased away by the beneficial bacteria produced during the fermentation process.
You can ferment your sauerkraut for up to 4 weeks. The longer you ferment it, the greater the number and variety of beneficial bacteria that can be produced.
7 STORE: Store in Refrigerator for Up to 1 Year
After fermenting your sauerkraut, it’s ready to go into the refrigerator and ready to be eaten. 
Need to purchase jars here you are

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