Old Fashioned Sauerkraut
The Skinny On Sauerkraut
Sauerkraut originated in China, where it is known as "kimchi", about 2,000 years ago, about the same time the Great Wall of China was being built. The laborers who built the Wall got their nourishment from rice and a type of cabbage pickled in wine.
It wasn't until 1,000 years later that Genghis Khan plundered China and brought back the recipe for pickled cabbage, which his hordes then transported to Europe. The Germans (who gave it the name "sauerkraut") then learned to omit the wine in the recipe, replacing it with salt. Which gave us sauerkraut as we know it today.
It wasn't long before sauerkraut became a staple for seafaring men. It kept well without refrigeration and the high levels of vitamin C found in sauerkraut helped keep the ships crew scurvy free. (The same was done with cucumbers). The famous ship captain, James Cook, once ordered 25,000 pounds of sauerkraut to outfit two ships.
Today you can experience the great history of sauerkraut, which was brought to the U.S. by German immigrants (who were once called Pennsylvania Dutch), by opening a jar of Bubbies Traditional Sauerkraut.
- Sauerkraut is made from the crisp center leaves of the finest quality cabbages, which are shredded, salted and cured for several weeks in huge wooden vats.
- Americans annually consume 387 million pounds of sauerkraut, or about 1.5 pounds per person per year.
- Approximately 330 million pounds of cabbage are grown each year in the U.S.
All facts and statistics were provided by Pickle Packers International, Inc.
- Sauerkraut is fat free and low in calories. It is rich in Vitamin C and contains other important nutrients including iron, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, thiamin, riboflavin, fiber, and niacin.
- Medical and health experts recommend eating several servings of cruciferous vegetables each week to reduce the risk of cancer of the colon. Sauerkraut, like cabbage, is cruciferous.