Sauerkraut is cabbage that is finely cut and fermented by a variety of lactic acid bacteria such as Leuconostoc, Lactobacillus, and Pediococcus. Like any other fermented food, sauerkraut has amazing health benefits and stays fresh for a longer period of time, unlike the raw vegetables.
How to prepare sauerkraut?
1. Remove all of the damaged leaves from the cabbage and cut it into pieces. Don`t wash the cabbage, because it has a natural bacteria that is found in the leaves.
2. Use glass or ceramics for storing the sauerkraut.
3. Add salt to the cabbage: Some people prefer to add 3 tablespoons for 5 pounds of cabbage, but you can add as much as you want depending on your taste. Salt helps to draw water from the cabbage, hardens the pectin and provides longer storage.
4. Press the cabbage with fingers to release as much water as possible.
5. Use heavy weights to press down the cabbage to release more water.
6. Check the container after several hours. If there is not enough water to cover the pieces, you should dissolve a teaspoon of salt in a bowl with water and add it to the pieces.
7. Cover the dish in order to prevent dust or insects.
8. Keep it in a cold and dark place for 4-6 weeks. Check it after 4 weeks to see if it’s good enough fermented. Otherwise, keep it a little longer.
9. If you want to stop the fermentation process, put the bowl in the refrigerator.
The health benefits of sauerkraut are unbelievable!
- Improves digestion: Sauerkraut is a great source of fibers, which is very important for the digestive tract. It relieves constipation, prevents cramps and bloating and improves bowel movements. Consuming sauerkraut on a regular basis prevents the development of serious diseases such as stomach ulcer and colon cancer.
- Boosts energy: The high iron content increases energy, blood circulation, and metabolism. It also prevents anemia and contributes to fatigue and headaches.
- Strengthens the immune system: Sauerkraut contains a huge amount of vitamin C, which is one of the biggest boosters of the immune system. Vitamin C plays an important role in the regeneration of cells, the white blood cell production and the formation of collagen (a key component for the vitality of all organs).
- Strengthens bones: Sauerkraut is rich in vitamin K, which prevents osteoporosis, produces a protein that regulates bone mineralization and maintains bone strength.
- Reduces inflammation: Sauerkraut contains the antioxidant phytonutrients, which are known as anti-inflammatory agents. Sauerkrauts regular consumption reduces pain in an inflamed area of the body.
- Prevents cancer: Each cruciferous vegetable is known for its powerful antioxidant properties. Many studies are stating that these powerful antioxidants destroy free radicals, which are essential to the creation of cancer cells.
- Improves cardiovascular health: The high fiber content in sauerkraut is also good for heart health. Fibers are stopping the negative effects of cholesterol in the arteries and blood vessels, which is important in the prevention of cardiovascular disease.
- Promotes vision and healthy skin: Vitamin A is good for vision and healthy skin. The solid amount of vitamin A found in sauerkraut reduces macular degeneration and cataract formation. In addition, it decreases the blemishes and the wrinkles.Source: http://besthealthyguide.com/homemade-sauerkraut-secret-weapon-fat-cancer-heart-disease/