Sauerkraut is an excellent self-made snack, an ingredient of sour soup, borscht, bigusa and many other dishes. Salting is also an excellent way to prepare a vegetable for the future, to process a large crop. Why sauerkraut does not always work?
Cabbage is the most important ingredient
Not every fork of cabbage is suitable for salting. Regardless of the chosen recipe, even if it has been tested for decades and centuries, sometimes nothing happens. For fermentation they use the largest cabbages of a light color, green leaves are always removed, they give bitterness, an unpleasant aftertaste. But it’s still not the most important thing.
- Early varieties. They are absolutely not suitable for salting, the cabbage will be soft, slime will appear in it. We celebrate immediately.
- Mid-season cabbage. She has gained enough sugar, fermentation is allowed, but getting really tasty and standing billet from the average cabbage will not work.
- Late cabbage. It is ideal for salting, contains a lot of sugar, quite juicy and dense. It is from it turns out good sauerkraut.
It is recommended to try cabbage before salting. It should not have any other tastes, including bitterness. If the vegetable is purchased, it is important to ensure its quality. Salting is also not available from the cabbage grown on nitrates and fertilizers.
Tip! If only middle-seasoned cabbage is at home, then when souring with salt, it is recommended to add some sugar.
Why gray cabbage
Ideally, cabbage turns white or slightly yellowish. Color depends on the spices and additional ingredients. Often in the composition is present carrots, and sometimes pieces of beet. But in any case, the gray cabbage should not be.
What could be the reasons:
- Little brine. If the cabbage is not completely immersed in the juice with salt, it begins to disappear from above, the fermentation process is inhibited, this affects the result. The whole mass will spoil to the bottom, not just the top layer.
- Low salt. Although it does not participate in fermentation, vegetable sugar plays a major role, but salt is a natural preservative. Without it or with insufficient quantities, the process of decay may begin, mold will appear.
- Wrong tableware is used. The gray color of the billet appears very often if sauerkraut in an oxidizing pot, for example, from aluminum. It is more reasonable to give preference to enamel saucepans, plastic buckets, glass jars.
Sometimes cabbage gets dark due to a violation of technology. It should sour in a warm place, the bacteria do not work in the cold. It is important to periodically “pierce” the workpiece, release gases. As soon as the cabbage picks up the acid, fermentation is over, it is brought to the cold, lowered into the cellar, or simply sent to the refrigerator. If you do it ahead of time, the workpiece will become gray, quickly disappear.
Why cabbage turned out soft
The most unpleasant thing that happens with sauerkraut is that it becomes soft, sometimes even mucus appears. Neither of which taste and vitamins in this case is out of the question. This often happens when using unsuitable early and medium varieties. If this is not the reason, then we are looking elsewhere.
Why it turned out soft sauerkraut:
- Not that salt. In fact, it does not participate in the fermentation process, but it provokes the release of juices. It is important for the billet to choose large rock salt and always without iodine.
- Hot water was added. Invalid moment.
- Cabbage stood in a warm place for a long time. Salting is transferred to autumn for a reason, the harvesting is better obtained in the cold season.
- Low sugar. To make the bacteria start working and fermenting, you need sweet cabbage. Not all late varieties have a lot of sugars, the cultivation technology, the frequency of watering, the number of sunny days also affect the content.
- Little juice. Its quality is affected by the quality of the cabbage itself, as well as the amount of salt. Often boiled water or brine is added to the billet.
By the way, it is important not only to use the correct salt, but also to lay in the right amount. On average, 1 kg of cabbage is 20 grams. If you add more, you get too salty billet.
Why is cabbage sour?
Sometimes the cabbage quickly becomes sour, literally on the second or third day after pickling. The reason is hot room. It is advisable to leave the workpiece at a temperature of 18 to 22 degrees. Otherwise, the process occurs fairly quickly. As soon as a pleasant sour taste appears, you need to immediately reduce the temperature. It should not exceed 7-10 degrees. In this case, nothing perekisnet.
Tip! Sour cabbage does not need to throw away. It can be washed, soaked, used for various dishes.
Why bitter cabbage
If the workpiece is not pierced and does not release gases from it, which are formed in the first days, then an unpleasant bitterness appears. It is almost impossible to get rid of it. It is necessary to pierce the cabbage until fermentation takes place. This is usually done with a wooden stick, the process takes a few seconds a day.
The second reason for the appearance of bitterness or foreign taste is the use of iodized salt. On some packs it is even written that it is unsuitable for conservation and harvesting. But for some reason the hostesses continue to make this mistake.
Folk omens and beliefs
Many different signs are connected with sauerkraut. It has long been thought that it is necessary to harvest a vegetable at a certain time and taking into account all the nuances. Otherwise, nothing good will happen.
What were the signs:
- You can not pickle cabbage in the full moon. They usually wait five or six days after it. Only in this case you get a crispy and tasty billet.
- You can not engage in the procurement of critical days. Nothing good will come of it.
- The most delicious and crispy is the cabbage, which was prepared on Tuesday or Thursday.
To believe or not to signs is a personal matter, but for gardeners even special calendars are produced. Pickled cabbage in them is given a special place. If she suddenly failed, then someone will surely envy you. So said our grandmothers.