So I started making sauerkraut with some small additional amounts of carrot. Chopped it, mixed it with some salt, put it in a big jar and pushed it enough so the juices covered the solids. Then I sealed it airtight, but after two days bubbles begin to create ( I know it's a part of the process ) and some solids came to the top. The question is should I leave it like this or can I open it and add some additional brine made from water mixed with salt. I am asking because I am concerned if the opening won't spoil the fermentation.
Especially at the beginning, the fermentation process (the bubbling) moves some of the solid stuff to the top, leaving little air pockets underneath along with the brine. Just push down hard on the top. You'll force the air out of the kraut, and the liquid will rise again.
This is the reason for leaving 2" headspace when you first fill your jars. I also press a whole cabbage leaf over the top, helping to keep most of the kraut under brine.
Don't worry about the solids on the top. If you filled your jar too full, just remove a little bit and press down HARD with a spoon or with your clean fist, until the brine comes back to the top.
I wonder about this airtight sealing. There is no reason to seal it airtight. Gases will be produced by the microorganisms and thoses gases want to escape. Traditionally the sauerkraut pot is not sealed but the lid lays loose on the top. The trick is that the lid lays in a furrow of water. Furthermore the kraut is topped by a piece of wood (which has big holes) and the wood is pressed down into the kraut by a stone. 6 weeks and don't touch it, just listen to the bubbles. Greetings from a Kraut :-)
I make mine in a stone jar. I have a saucer which fits neatly on the top of the cabbage, and a lidded glass jar filled with water sits on top of the saucer, sticking up above the rim of the stoneware jar. Over the top of this I put a large carrier bag, held in place organist the rim of the stoneware jar with a big elastic band.
Several times a day I press down on the jar through the plastic, which forces the cabbage mix down, pushing the ferment bubbles up in a lovely glooping noise. After a week or two, the glooping stops, at which point I transfer the kraut to some lidded jars and store it in the fridge.
This way, no insects , dust etc can get in, the cabbage stays below the brine and it seems to work fine.
I make sauerkraut in wide-mouth mason jars, using standard metal lids (making sure that the lid is new enough that the rubber seal is still soft.) The recipe I use is a half tablespoon of salt per one pound of shredded cabbage/veggies. I pack it in the jar and place a little ceramic weight on top to keep the kraut submerged below the brine. I add a little water, if necessary.
I then close the lid tight, and once a day for the first 7-10 days, I slightly loosen the lid just enough for any built-up gas pressure to escape with a hiss, and then I tighten it back up. This allows the CO2 generated by the fermentation to purge the jar of air. That prevents aerobic nasties from growing inside the jar. After 10 days at room temperature, I put the jar in the fridge and let the kraut age for a month or two before opening. Unopened, the kraut will keep for many months.
You'll be fine! I'd skim the stuff off the top. If the cabbage and carrots aren't totally submerged in the remaining brine, add more salted water (I think it's a scant 1 Tbsp salt/8 fl oz water? Or maybe 1 tsp. I forget. Whatever your directions say!) to cover.
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