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- Work with 5 pounds of cabbage at a time. Rinse heads under cold running water and drain.
- Cut heads in quarters and remove cores.
- Shred or slice to a thickness of a quarter.
- Put cabbage in a suitable fermentation container and add 3 tbsp salt.
- Mix thoroughly, using clean hands.
- Pack firmly until salt draws juices from cabbage.
- Repeat shredding, salting, and packing until all cabbage is in the container.
- Be sure the container is deep enough so that its rim is at least 4 or 5 inches above the cabbage. If juice does not cover cabbage, add boiled and cooled brine (1-1/2 tablespoons of salt per quart of water).
- Add plate and weights, cover container with a clean bath towel.
- Store at 70-75 degrees Fahrenheit while fermenting.
- At temperatures between 70-75 degrees Fahrenheit, kraut will be fully fermented in about 3-4 weeks; at 60-65 degrees Fahrenheit, fermentation may take 5-6 weeks. At temperatures lower than 60 degrees Fahrenheit kraut may not ferment. Above 75 degrees Fahrenheit, kraut may become soft. If you weigh the cabbage down with a brine-filled bag (6 tablespoons salt to 1 gallon of water), do not disturb the crock until normal fermentation is completed (when bubbling ceases). If you use jars as weight, you will have to check the kraut 2-3 times each week and remove scum if it forms. Fully fermented kraut may be kept tightly covered in the refrigerator for several months.
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