Kraut is a classic culinary treasure that suffered greatly from the industrialization of the food system.
As people turned away from small-batch fermentation in their homes or purchasing straight from a local producer’s barrel, sauerkraut turned from a flavorful, healthful way to enjoy vegetables through a long cold winter to a pale shadow of its former vibrancy.
Pasteurization, while an important and even necessary “kill step” for many foods, has done more harm than good to sauerkraut. A shelf-stable (pasteurized) product is certainly easier to manage than our refrigerated krauts but the price is high for the convenience. Both vitamin C and the probiotic Lactobacillus bacteria found in kraut are killed during pasteurization. We think the texture and flavor also suffer greatly. What’s more un-pasteurized, raw kraut is perfectly safe and will last for more than a year if kept refrigerated.
Farmhouse Culture infuses Old World fermentation traditions with innovative New World flavors and lets nature do the preserving. Here’s what we’ve put back into your kraut:
Flavor. Cooked kraut loses its snap and vibrancy when cooked. We’ve all smelled the sulfurous scent of over-boiled cabbage; the range of delicate flavors are lost when the leaves are cooked. Never sour or stinky, our raw krauts are delightfully tart and pungent.
Texture. We like kraut that snaps instead of sags, another reason we happily chose to keep our kraut raw. Raw kraut delivers a crisp, tooth-satisfying crunch that you’ll never you find in a can.
Health. It’s not just the flavor and texture that makes raw kraut superior – it’s also much healthier. The process of lacto-fermentation fills kraut up with live lactobacilli and beneficial microbes, which die when kraut is pasteurized. When you eat raw kraut like ours, however, this happy, thriving microflora goes on living in your gut, improving digestion, helping promote the growth of a healthy Microbiome, and protecting against many diseases.
In terms of nutrients, kraut’s got it good: believe it or not, fermentation makes the kraut even more nutritious than the original cabbage. That’s because the process actually increases the bioavailability of the nutrients in the plant, so cabbage – already a great source of calcium, magnesium, dietary fiber, folate, iron, potassium, copper, manganese and vitamins C, B, and K –gets even more awesome when we turn it into kraut.
From your taste buds to your toes, your whole body will thank you when you feed it raw, living krauts!