Preparations for the winter are a significant help in the household. One of the most common types of preparations is sauerkraut - an indispensable ingredient in winter for first courses and salads. The correct choice of the vegetable directly affects the shelf life and taste.
Regardless of whether the forks were grown independently at a summer cottage or purchased at a fair, it is important to pay attention to their appearance before buying. Be sure to inspect the condition of the heads of cabbage: the tightness and color of the leaves, the absence of holes and traces of parasites.
Not tight-fitting leaves are observed in early varieties, and brown, yellow or other dark colors indicate that the vegetable has begun to deteriorate.
The shape also matters - the most delicious workpiece will come from rounded, flattened forks. You should not take damaged or other shapes, because this indicates improper growth.
If the forks show no signs of rotting or parasite damage, their color can be described as white or pale green. It is recommended to choose the whitest forks, as this indicates the content of a large amount of vitamins and nutrients, in particular ascorbic acid.Such vegetables contain a lot of sugar, which is needed for the reproduction of bacteria (their presence is a prerequisite for the fermentation process). Cabbage, the color of the leaves of which fits the description "green, light green" is not suitable - the vegetable has not yet accumulated a sufficient amount of nutrients.
Cabbage differs in varieties: early, mid and late ripening. The best option for pickling is late varieties. They are dense, and pick up forks after the first fall frost. All of these conditions ensure that the kale strips are crispy and juicy.
Mid-season varieties are also allowed to be harvested, but it is better to cook dishes from it in the first place.
To determine the density, it is recommended to squeeze the vegetable in your hands, then listen to the sound and look at the shape. The more densely the cabbage leaves are pressed, the less they are pressed down (compressed). The fork may change its appearance - it will flatten.
Also, a crackling sound is heard from loose forks when squeezed.
As a rule, early-ripening cabbage heads are loose, light green in color. The late varieties most suitable for salting include Slava (the most popular), Moskovskaya, Countess.
With a wide selection of different sizes, choose the largest in size and weight. The more parameters, the better. Vegetables weighing less than 1 kg. have not accumulated enough useful elements.
It is optimal to take forks for workpieces weighing more than 5 kg.
This is the weight of a mature vegetable of a late variety. Early ripening plants are not large in size. From the latter, the harvesting is not stored all winter, it quickly becomes slimy and soft in consistency. Choosing the right cabbage head for pickling is an important step in harvesting the product for the winter. It will not be difficult to select the right vegetables, knowing what nuances you should pay attention to.
With the onset of autumn, cabbage salting begins for the winter. This tradition has come to us since Ancient Russia, when cabbage was fermented in whole barrels and ate it throughout the winter. And this is not surprising, because cabbage is the vegetable that, when fermented, retains all its vitamins and minerals. Therefore, for salting cabbage, a huge variety of recipes with all kinds of additives and spices were invented. Today, MG, with the help of experienced housewives' advice, will teach you how to choose high-quality heads of cabbage correctly and offer interesting recipes for pickling cabbage at home from attuale.ru.
You need to choose cabbage only with fresh, not peeled leaves.
It is important to examine the head of cabbage from all sides for brown and black areas, even very, very small ones. They will be the first to tell about the spoilage of the product by putrefactive bacteria and fungi.
You also need to pay attention to whether the sheets are "beaten" by insects. It is advisable to take a not too large, but heavy head of cabbage
This fact confirms his maturity. It is also worth squeezing the head with both hands. If it is tight, the cabbage has collected all the necessary juices and vitamins. When there is a feeling of airiness and volume, it means that the vegetable was cut ahead of time.
It is advisable to take a not too large, but heavy head of cabbage. This fact confirms his maturity. It is also worth squeezing the head with both hands. If it is tight, the cabbage has collected all the necessary juices and vitamins. When there is a feeling of airiness and volume, it means that the vegetable was cut ahead of schedule.
Often, early young cabbage is used for food, which is not particularly useful and is quite expensive.
For inexperienced housewives, it is important to know that such cabbage cannot be stored for a long time and used for harvesting for the winter.
In late summer - early autumn, mid-season and mid-late varieties of white cabbage appear on the market. As the name suggests, they represent the “golden mean” between late and young cabbage. Therefore, it can be taken not for too long storage and in order to create both a sauerkraut product and a fresh salad.
Late varieties of cabbage are most suitable for long-term storage and for all types of canning. They are characterized not only by resistance to cold, but also by excellent taste, which is why its specimens are suitable both for processing and for fresh consumption.
In addition, you need to pay attention to the width of the stump. The wider it is, the shorter
But still, this factor depends entirely on the variety of cabbage.
white forks - 2 kg, small juicy carrots - 2 pcs., bay leaves - 4 pcs., salt - 20 g, black peppercorns - 8 pcs.
rinse the head of cabbage, holding it by the stump so that water does not get inside the vegetable. We blot the forks with napkins (towel), remove the top leaves, cut into 8 pieces.
Cut the cabbage with a sharp knife or a special shredder. We do this not too thinly, so that the pieces of the vegetable do not become soft, do not lose their crunchy properties. The length of the strips is up to 3 cm. We take these rules into account in almost all methods of salting, pickling or pickling. Throw away the stump.
Sprinkle the chopped cabbage with salt and lightly press on the vegetable pieces until droplets of juice appear. To keep the cabbage white and beautiful, we do this before combining with the carrot.
Add peppercorns, laurel leaves, place vegetables in a sterilized container, mix, tamping the food a little. We cover the blank with gauze and leave for two days.
We pierce the sauerkraut with a wooden stick up to five times a day so that gas bubbles come out. After the specified time, we expose the workpiece for another three days in a cooler room up to 18 degrees. For long-term storage, a temperature of 0 to 2 degrees is required.
white vegetable - up to 2.2 kg per 3-liter jar, carrots - 2 pcs., black peppercorns and laurel leaves - 3 pcs., salt and sugar - 2 tbsp. l., bottled water - 1.5 l.
for the brine, boil water with the addition of salt, peppercorns and laurel leaves, then cool the mixture until warm.
Chop the prepared cabbage, mix it with grated carrots, put it in a jar, tamp it a little, fill it with warm brine, cover with gauze.
We put the jar in a deep plate to collect the juice released during the fermentation process. We expect 2-3 days, periodically piercing the cabbage. We monitor the brine level. If it is not enough, we replenish it from the accumulated liquid. We rearrange the finished product from heat to a cold place.
There are many varieties of the popular vegetable, differing in color, edible structure, and other characteristics. For pickles, cabbage is often used. Cultivars are chosen for medium-late and late ripening periods. The vegetable with red heads is also very tasty, fermented perfectly. However, housewives are less accustomed to using such cabbage. Sometimes, when fermented, it is added to white heads for tinting. Brussels sprouts, cauliflower and other types of cabbage that do not form dense heads of cabbage are not used for pickling.
Important! The pickling and pickling technologies are slightly different. However, both variants use the same cabbage varieties.
Which variety of cabbage is best for pickling and long-term storage? For pickling, it is better to select those varieties with a late ripening period, forming dense white heads of cabbage. The most popular variety of cabbage for pickling is "Slava", this variety is used by many experienced gardeners for pickling. Among the early ripening varieties, it is worth noting the "Countess F1" cabbage, which can ripen for 85 days. It brings medium dense heads of cabbage up to 2.5 kg. Possesses resistance to thrips, fusarium.
Also worth noting is the mid-season cabbage variety "Flagship F1", which bears fruit in 120 days. Ripe heads of cabbage have a fairly dense structure; rather large fruits weighing 3-4 kg are formed.
"Table F1" has an average ripening period of up to 125 days. The weight of mature heads of cabbage can reach 5.5 kg. The main advantage of this hybrid fermentation variety is its resistance to cracking.
For winter salting, a well-known vegetable variety - "Gift", which has high yield rates, is suitable. Mature forks do not crack and retain their shape. This variety has a good taste and excellent juiciness of the forks. Fresh, such cabbage is also suitable for storage; it can perfectly retain its taste in a cool room.
For long-term storage and preservation, cabbage "Mara" is suitable, it is a late-ripening variety that gives large heads of cabbage up to 4 kg. "Mara" is distinguished by unpretentiousness in care, resistance to diseases and destructive rot. Mara can be stored until May.
Cabbage "Valentina F1" is suitable for pickling and home preservation, it is the champion in terms of storage duration under comfortable conditions - until July without losing its taste characteristics. The forks are sweet and juicy. It is perfect not only for pickling and pickling, but also for preparing fresh salads and first courses.
Late varieties of this culture need more time to curl the head. Its large forks can be harvested at the time of the first frost. The leaves of such a cabbage are not particularly juicy and tender. These varieties are not susceptible to spring frosts. If you follow the storage rules for late varieties of cabbage, then there is an opportunity to save it until the next harvest.
For fermentation and long-term storage for a period of 6 months, "Snow White" varieties are suitable. It carries flat round forks up to 4 kg in weight. This cabbage has a high yield. The leaves of this cabbage have an excellent taste, without bitterness, so it is often used to prepare baby food.
It is also worth noting the Aggressor F1 cabbage variety, which has increased yields. It is resistant to some types of infectious diseases. Sauerkraut forks of this variety of cabbage perfectly retain their taste. It can be stored for up to 6 months.
Cabbage is a source of minerals and vitamins important for humans. That is why many gardeners salt them for the winter. For homemade preparations, varieties with medium and late ripening periods are suitable. Large forks are suitable for home salting, because they contain a sufficient amount of sugar necessary for salting. Cabbage forks should be creamy on the cut and feel tight.
For salting, you need to choose such varieties of cabbage as Jubilee F1, Slava-1305. The first variety ripens within 95 days, the second is distinguished by increased productivity indicators.
Among the varieties that have a later ripening period, it is worth highlighting Amager, Geneva, Türkiz. The first variety, with daily growth, improves its taste characteristics, the second can be stored until the next harvest. The third can be harvested 4 months after the direct disembarkation. As a result, neat heads of cabbage come out that do not crack over time, which can be safely postponed until winter frosts. Such heads of cabbage can also be salted in winter, their taste becomes better over time. By the spring they are getting better, taking on a sweetish flavor. You can choose varieties that have a long shelf life, they are ideal for home salting and pickling.
Useful tips for choosing cabbage for pickling for those who buy cabbage, and do not grow it on their own:
Sauerkraut is a traditional product for our people. When fermented, vitamins and dietary properties of cabbage are well preserved. But not all varieties of cabbage, even white cabbage, are suitable for obtaining excellent crispy food. It is necessary to choose a variety with knowledge of the matter, so that later you do not worry about failure if the product turns out to be spoiled.
As you know, cabbage is one of our favorite vegetables. And almost every gardener and summer resident will allocate at least one bed for its cultivation. After all, from cabbage, how many dishes can you make.
And besides its taste, it contains a huge amount of vitamins, minerals, acids, fiber and coarse dietary fiber, which are so necessary for humans.
And in sauerkraut, vitamin "C" is much more than in the lemon itself. And the cabbage vitamin is absorbed much better than that obtained from citrus fruits. In addition, the taste of the future snack depends on the variety of cabbage for pickling and pickling.
How to choose the right cabbage for pickling and pickling
First of all, you need to know that early cabbage varieties are not suitable not for pickling, nor for sourdough and storage. It is ideal only for the first fresh salads, and no more.
For processing cabbage for the winter, and its further preservation, late and mid-season vegetable varieties are suitable.
Those who grow this vegetable in their own garden harvest it after the first frost. By this time, it will absorb the largest amount of natural sugar, it will be juicy and tasty.
From mid-autumn to mid-winter, the most favorable time for pickling and pickling cabbage. Those who are fond of lunar calendars, they salt cabbage only for the growing moon.
Its head should be tight and dense. In addition, there should not be green leaves on it, they are bitter, dry and tasteless. And they do not give such a fermentation process as white ones.
If you cut the fruit in half, then a good, healthy head of cabbage will have only white center, a shade of cream is allowed. Free of pigmentation, black spots, fungal dots and rotten stalk. Otherwise, cabbage is not suitable for processing.
Note to housewives: the sweeter the cabbage head, the better it will ferment. Since the sugar in it turns into lactic acid. And it is with its help that the fermentation process takes place.
The quality of the cabbage can be determined both for the whole head of cabbage and after cutting it. Shredded cabbage strips will bounce when squeezed in the palm of your hand.
The difference between pickling and pickling
At first glance, it would seem that there could be differences. But they do exist, and they are very significant. Fermentation occurs due to lactic acids, which are formed during fermentation of cabbage, by fermentation of natural sugar in the head of cabbage.
During the salting process, due to such a strong preservative as salt, fermentation bacteria do not multiply. But, using this method of processing cabbage, it is very important to strictly adhere to the recipe and not overdo it with salt.
If you add too much of it to the cabbage, all fermentation bacteria will die. And if not salted enough, the product will simply deteriorate.
The advantages of sauerkraut are that in addition to the sourdough, it also contains acetic acid, a little bit of gas and ethyl alcohol. All these components significantly improve the taste of the future dish.
Cabbage varieties most suitable for sourdough and salting
How to choose a variety of cabbage for pickling and pickling? Culinary experts recommend choosing specific specific varieties that are suitable for a particular processing method. Because not all cabbage suitable for pickling will be tasty when fermented, and vice versa.
Medium varieties ripen after early species. The period of their cleaning from the garden is the end of August, the beginning of September. They are more productive than early cabbage and are mainly used for sourdough.
But some of its varieties are also suitable for salting:
Late varieties of cabbage are grown mainly in the center and south of the country, as it takes more time to ripen. Therefore, in the northern parts, it simply cannot withstand early frosts.
Consider some varieties that are both salted and fermented:
Some practice and process cabbage hybrid varieties - Russian size and Menza. Their heads of cabbage are rather large, used for salting and storage.
The hybrid variety Creumont is generally not recommended for processing. He is very prone to fungal diseases, which are extremely dangerous to human health.
Any preparation of cabbage for the winter will disappear from the table in an instant, you just have to marinate it and serve it with the appropriate dishes. We will deal with coarse cut in another article, today we are only discussing how to cut cabbage for pickling or another method of winter harvesting.
Slicing recommendations should be taken from a specific recipe, they usually mention how to properly chop the cabbage in shape and size. Do not change the indicated proportions unless absolutely necessary, otherwise you may have to wait for the salting result much longer.
Unlike the examples discussed earlier, it is preferable to choose a rather powerful knife. When harvesting cabbage, even in modest quantities, the mass of vegetables is calculated in kilograms and it is too troublesome to cut it at all very thin.
The technology of how to chop cabbage for pickling is almost unchanged. The difference is only in size and in the fact that the stump can not be removed, but simply put off, cutting off all the tender parts from it.
Cutting with a knife is the only correct answer to the question of how to chop cabbage into long strips for pickling. No device, such as the use of special shredders or rubbing boards, can be compared with classical technology. At the same time, the head of cabbage can be slightly rotated, like the blade itself, it is permissible even to hold it in weight, cutting off thin slices, like a loaf from a loaf.
It is a completely different matter if your preparations are significant in volume, since it is much easier to quickly chop cabbage for pickling in such a case with the help of simple and proven means. This time, on the contrary, they are all good. The cabbage will come out as a result may not be so elegant in appearance, but the barrel ambassador with its taste more than compensates for such disadvantages.
How to chop cabbage for pickling - decide based on the available devices and, accordingly, the volumes. So, there are special attachments for food processors, tools similar to a potato peeler, but specially designed for slicing cabbage. Vegetable graters of common design, but large in size.
If you decide to use any of these methods, keep in mind one mandatory point. If the whole family is called in to help and different chopping methods are used, make sure the slices come out of the same thickness and length before adding and mixing the sliced cabbage. With a noticeable difference, it is better to harvest them in different containers, otherwise in the finished pickling there will be pieces that differ noticeably in taste.
Despite the seeming simplicity, the task is not so trivial. A simple proof of this is an old wedding custom contest, which allows you to find out how a future spouse can finely chop cabbage with a knife. Married and elderly women were not allowed to see him, and maidens of marriageable age diligently crumbled heads of cabbage, in a hurry to earn the title of the best housewife.
Joke? Far from it! Not so far are the days when an experienced craftswoman, who knows how to finely chop cabbage into strips, deserved high praise for her art, because the survival of the whole family depended on the quantity and quality of preparations for the winter in the most literal sense.
Hungry winters, we hope, are still in the past, but to this day, masterfully prepared sauerkraut depends on taste not only on the variety and the accuracy of the selection of the brine ingredients. Just by changing the shape and size of the pieces, all other things being equal, you can get different snacks not just in different tubs, but even from one large head of cabbage.
It is easy to make sure of this by choosing any recipe on our website, or even using your own, homemade one. Just dissolve some of the cabbage leaves into strips, half as wide as recommended, the marinade will do the rest.