Prepare a clean and bacteria-free environment. This is a very important step, when it comes to fermenting food. Make sure that all the equipment you will use and the containers are clean. Wash the cabbage thoroughly and get rid of cabbage leaves that don’t look good.
Shred the cabbage into pieces. Cut cabbage in two halves. Trim out the cabbage core and cut it in wedges. Now, continue cutting the cabbage into smaller pieces or take a grater and shred it. In the end, you should have a nice pile of cabbage ribbons.
Mix cabbage and salt. Put all the shredded cabbage in a bowl and squeeze it. Add the salt and again squeeze and combine it. It may seem that it is not enough salt, because it will take some time for cabbage to start relieving the juice brine. That’s why it is better to start with a smaller amount of salt and then add more if necessary.
Put cabbage in a jar and then put a smaller jar filled with stones. You need something heavy to keep the cabbage pressed all the time. While it is easy with crocks, jars can be very narrow,so the best option is to find a smaller jar, the one you use for sauces and jams. When you fill the small jar with cobbles, they will be heavy enough to keep the cabbage down.
The final step is to put a cloth on the jar and a rubber band. The first 24 hours you can keep the jar in a room where there is a normal room temperature, not too warm and not too cold. The warm temperatures make the fermentation quicker but if the room is too warm, the sauerkraut may go bad. Smaller amounts of sauerkraut ferment quicker than sauerkraut in a crock.
So, you will need to keep it in a room temperature for 3 days only. After that period, you can remove the cloth and close the jar with a lid. Feel free to taste your sauerkraut and if it is not sour enough for your taste, keep it a few more days under the room temperature before you refrigerate it.