Sauerkraut Testing

If all goes as planned, I'll soon be embarking on a diet that has me living entirely on chicken soup and sauerkraut. For a while anyway. I think that phase might go on for a week or two. I don't know the details yet.

Not one to go into a fermented food situation blind, I wanted to conduct a taste test.

Sauerkraut comes in jars, eh? I'm learning.

On the left we have a jar of Gundelsheim Sauerkraut. The ingredients are cabbage and salt. This was my "natural" contender. On the right, Claussen "Premium Crisp" Sauerkraut. The Claussen version has added water, a preservative (NaC6H5CO2), and a sulfite (K2S2O5) to preserve the whiteness.

I think the one on the left did a bit of in-jar fermenting, because we struggled to get the lid off. When the lid broke free I was greeted by a robust, urgent aroma that I suspect would smell like spoiled cabbage, had I ever smelled such a thing. This is a good time to recall that I have a allergies and a cold. I haven't smelled anything for days. I was impressed.

Claussen's lid popped right off and I could detect a faint coleslaw-like odor.

Looking at that picture above, I think you can see the horrible price Gundelsheim paid for not including a color preservative. It was clearly darker and lacked the well-bleached exterior we've come to expect in pale-colored products.

Tasting the Gundelsheim, I was surprised. After the mighty odor, I was expecting a fight. Instead, it was mild and felt like it would go well with sausage. My taste experience was very positive. Even now my intestines are no doubt being quietly rewarded by a varied surge of allied German bacteria.

The Claussen taste experience was disappointing. If I remember coleslaw properly (it's been a long time), I'd say it tasted just like coleslaw. It was pungent, vinegary, and generally unpleasant. If you like coleslaw, this might be the brand for you.

I scraped candidate B off my plate and went back for more Gundelsheim. Test successful.

Tomorrow: I'm going to make a homemade chicken stock for the first time.


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