SALT LAKE CITY (KUTV) — If you take probiotics, news about the benefits of homemade sauerkraut may surprise you.
According to Dr. Joseph Mercola, an alternative medicine physician, just two ounces of the sauerkraut has more probiotics than an entire bottle of 100 probiotic capsules.
Dr. Mercola had a sample of his own homemade sauerkraut tested in a lab for probiotics and the results were astonishing.
“We had it analyzed," Dr. Mercola said. "We found in a 4-6 ounce serving of the fermented vegetables there were literally ten trillion bacteria.”
One important thing to note is the sauerkraut was homemade.
The stuff you buy in stores often is treated with preservatives meaning it no longer has the same health effects as the stuff you can make at home.
Sauerkraut is a form of fermented cabbage.
Fermentation brings live probiotics and enzymes, which have numerous health benefits which aid in digestion and help the body absorb nutrients.
Below is a recipe for homemade sauerkraut from Nourished Kitchen.
Traditional, homemade sauerkraut relies only on cabbage and salt, and those ingredients come together through time and the work of beneficial bacteria to create a pleasant, sour, fermented vegetable that can be used as a condiment or side dish. Homemade sauerkraut pairs beautifully with broiled sausages, and hearty lentil stews.
For the Sauerkraut:
2 medium cabbage heads, about 5 pounds
2 tablespoons finely ground sea salt
Kraut Pounder, optional
Remove any bruised or damaged outer leaves from the cabbage, and then remove the cabbage's core. Slice the cabbage in long, thin shreds about ?-inch thick.
Toss cabbage and salt together in a large mixing bowl and let it rest about five minutes, or until the cabbage begins to soften and release a little liquid, then squeeze the cabbage with your hands to further break up those thin shreds of vegetable and release more juice.
When the cabbage has become limp and has released ample juice, transfer it to a sauerkraut crock or vegetable fermenter). Pack the salted cabbage into the crock or fermenter as tightly as you can, eliminating air bubbles. A kraut pounder is particularly helpful in packing the cabbage tightly within the crock.
Continue packing the cabbage into the container until the cabbage is completely submerged by its liquid. Seal the crock and allow it to sit at room temperature, undisturbed, for at least 1 month and up to 6 months. testing the sauerkraut every few days until it is sour enough for your liking. Pack the sauerkraut into mason jars, and transfer to the refrigerator or other cold storage where it should keep for at least 6 months and up to 1 year.
Serving size: 1/2 cup
To seal a stoneware crock (like this), fill the crock to its neck with salted cabbage, place weights over the cabbage and ensure that the vegetable rests below its brine. Cover the crock with its lid, and pour water into the well around the lid, checking the water level every few days to make sure it has not evaporated.
To seal a glass jar equipped with an airlock (like this), fill the jar to its neck, place weights over the cabbage to ensure that the vegetable rests below its brine. Cover the jar with its lid, and insert the airlock. Fill the airlock with water to its fill line and snap its lid in place.