The fermenting process is complete. You can let the sauerkraut ferment up to 6 months but we do it around 6 weeks because leaving the sauerkraut in there longer doesn’t make any difference in the flavor. So here goes..
First remove the weight……then skim the scum off one last time….
Remove the plate & cheese cloth………Clean the top layer of the sauerkraut removing any more scum that may remain then wipe of any exposed area of the inside of the bucket.
Now go ahead and taste the sauerkraut………. MMM Good stuff, says my husband.
We cold pack our sauerkraut but we have heard of hot packing, when you heat the sauerkraut to a temp of 180 degrees (F). We haven’t found it necessary.
Prepare your canning jars by cleaning and rinsing them and make sure you have new lids.
Heat up the jars with hot water…
Pour out the water, we pour it back into the tea kettle to use for the next batch, just before you are ready to fill the jar.
Place sauerkraut into the jar and pack down with a non metallic utensil.
Do this process as quickly as possible, you don’t want the jar to cool down.
Leave a 1/2″ headroom…..Wipe of rim…place lid and ring on jar tightly……
Place into water bath with the rack in the raised position.
Once you have filled the rack, this one holds 7, wait a minute for the jars to adjust to the heat…….Then lower them into the water. There should be enough water to the cover the jars by at least an inch. Watch them for a moment to make sure none crack, If one seems to float or a lot of bubbles are coming out, sorry to say you probably have a cracked one. We had one crack and it must be thrown away. My husband was quit upset, he loves his sauerkraut.
Cover with the lid and process for 15 minutes for pints and 20 minutes for quarts.
In case you were wondering why we are doing the canning on a propane burner, It was a hot August day and we also like how fast the burner heats up the water compared to the electric stove we have inside.
Now sit back and enjoy the sound of popping lids. I always get excited over that pinging sound. Some take longer than others and that’s ok. If you have one that doesn’t pop don’t worry you can replace the lid and try re-processing the jar or place it in the fridge and eat that jar first.
Our 20 lbs. of sauerkraut yielded 27 jars (that is including the one that broke).
We hope you enjoy your sauerkraut as much as we do.
In case you missed part one click here.
This is the process we use and we hope you have the same success. Using this process is not a guarantee that your results will be same and we are not responsible for poor results.
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