Every New Year brings a brand new opportunity to start fresh and create a healthier lifestyle. One of the best and easiest ways to get healthier is to make simple changes to your diet by adding more whole foods into it every day. A nourishing smoothie a day, eating more leafy green vegetables with your meals, adding in wholesome fats, and eating fermented foods are some of the best ways to start to make changes that can transform your health. Whole foods taste amazing and once you start eating them daily you will not want to go back to eating processed foods filled with ingredients that deplete your health.
I want to do whatever I can to make it easy for you to eat healthier and one of my favorite ways to do this is by sharing my favorite whole foods recipes that I love on my site. Today’s recipe is for a fermented purple cabbage and apple sauerkraut. If you have been to my blog before or checked out my Instagram you already know that I adore making batches of fermented foods every month. This vibrant sauerkraut is absolutely delicious and is now one of my most favorite sauerkraut recipes!
This yummy sauerkraut includes navel orange brine along with organic purple cabbage, Fuji apple and goji berries. The crunchy Fuji apple and goji berries really add a wonderful sweetness to my ferment which balances out the tangy and earthy flavor of the cabbage. If you don’t have goji berries, dried cranberries or golden raisins would be great with this recipe.
Eating fermented foods on a daily basis has really made a huge difference in my health. I used to suffer with terrible indigestion, gas, acid reflux and bloating almost every day. Once I started eating fermented foods with my meals, I started to support my digestive system health and I felt so much better! If you’ve never made fermented foods, you will love what happens when beneficial bacteria works together with food and time to create fermented foods that are rich in nutrients and active probiotics!
I get so happy when I see my ferments being transformed by the lactobacilli bacteria. Fermentation is truly a wonderful process to see in action. The Greeks explained the transformation of food that occurs with fermentation as “alchemy.” Beneficial lactobacilli bacteria, sea salt, or adding a probiotic cultured vegetable starter or probiotic capsules transforms cabbage and other vegetables or fruits into a nutrient-dense living food filled with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, enzymes, and probiotics that helps support your digestive system.
Lactobacilli are naturally occurring lactic acid bacteria that are present on vegetables and fruits and in the air. This good or beneficial bacteria is high in natural enzymes and are responsible for turning the starches and sugars in foods into lactic acid that preserves food and enhances its nutrients. This lactic acid bacteria also promotes the growth of beneficial bacteria in our intestines.
70 to 80% of our immune cells reside in our gut, so it is crucial that you do whatever you can to keep your digestive system healthy so your immune system stays strong. Fermented vegetables and beverages are a delicious and simple way to provide food-based nutrients that support both your digestive and immune system health and they are so simple to make!
The key to a successful fermentation is to make sure your vegetables or fruits are submerged completely under the brine so bad bacteria won’t grow in your ferment. Fermentation is an anaerobic process so doing this is an absolute necessity. Two of the best ways to do this is to use either a Picklemeister Glass Fermentation Jar or a Pickl-It Jar. Both of these options are bit more expensive than glass canning jars so see how you like making your own fermented vegetables before you invest in the more expensive option.
I started with glass canning jars and they worked great when I was making small batches. Now that I ferment frequently and share my ferments with my family, friends and clients, I bought the one gallon Picklemeister Glass Fermentation Jar so I can make larger batches and keep them free of oxygen because of the airlocks that come with the jars. Every batch I have made with these jars comes out great and the vegetables stay so crunchy and fresh! If you want more information on the health benefits of eating fermented foods check out my post and other fermented recipes. I have a lot of tasty recipes for you to try so please be sure to check them out!
I hope this New Year will be filled with abundant good health and happiness for all of you! Here’s some of my favorite tips to help you have a happy and healthy year! May my recipe inspire you to start making your own fermented sauerkraut creations!
If you want to try another fermented food recipe and are a fan of Salsa Verde, you have to make this delicious Fermented Salsa Verde recipe from Yogi Mami that is packed with healing probiotics!
Have you ever made fermented foods before? If so what’s some of your favorites? Please contribute to the conversation by leaving a comment below.
If you enjoyed my recipe, check out my holistic cookbook that’s packed with 154 tasty whole foods recipes and 50 pages of healthy living tips! Deliciously Holistic is for sale as a eBook for only $15.00 or as a print book on Amazon! Find out more about the cookbook or get the eBook by clicking here.
Join our holistic community by liking my Facebook page, following me on Twitter, pinning with me on Pinterest, and joining me on Instagram to get all the latest healthy recipes, health tips, event notifications, and helpful information on increasing your energy, strength, and immunity with healing whole foods, essential oils, and holistic lifestyle solutions.
Fermented Purple Cabbage and Apple Sauerkraut
Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free
Makes around 2-3 quarts depending on size of the cabbage
1 medium head organic purple cabbage
1 large navel orange—peeled and white pith removed
4 ½ cups filtered or spring water
3 teaspoons Himalayan pink salt
1 teaspoon organic coconut sugar or organic cane sugar
1 large organic Fuji Apple-diced or shredded
¼ cup organic Goji berries-optional (can also substitute dried cranberries or raisins)
2 or 3 ( 1 quart) Glass canning jars or a 1 gallon Picklemeister Glass Fermentation Jar
1. Remove large outer leaves from cabbage and the core. Cut cabbage into thin shreds rinse, drain well and pat dry. Place shredded cabbage in a large bowl and set leaves aside for later.
2. Make your brine. Place peeled orange into your blender with water, pink salt and sugar. Blend until smooth and stir in vegetable culture starter or contents of probiotic capsules and stir to combine. Let brine sit for 10-15 minutes to activate it.
3. Add diced or shredded apples to your bowl of cabbage along with the goji berries if using and pour brine on top. Using your clean hands mix together the cabbage and fruits to make sure everything is well coated with the brine.
4. Place sauerkraut into the clean glass jars or 1 gallon jar and push down with your fist or a tamper to remove all the air bubbles. Add folded outer leaves of cabbage on top and then pour remaining brine on top to make sure the sauerkraut and outer leaves are completed covered with brine. Leave at least 2 inches of space at the top of the jars for the cabbage to expand as it ferments. Seal with the lids and place sauerkraut jars into a large box and keep out of sunlight while it ferments. Let it ferment for 6-7 days, remove top outer leaves from jars and then place in the refrigerator.
5. If using the larger fermentation jar place the flat outer leaves on top of the sauerkraut and then place the extra plastic top on the leaves and a glass drinking glass on top of the lid that fits inside the jar to weigh down the cabbage. Seal with the top and fill the airlock device with water and pop it in the center of the lid according to the manufacturer’s instructions and place in a large box out of direct sunlight while it ferments. Follow the same instructions and time for fermentation that is listed above.
Important Note: I like to check my fermented vegetables every day to make sure they are still submerged in the brine. If they are not remove the top and push down under the brine, reseal the jar and place back in the box to continue fermenting.