Products: Three varieties of fresh, organic sauerkraut made with locally sourced ingredients: Classic Kraut seasoned with organic caraway seeds; Holy Smokes, a spicy Latin kraut; and introducing Horsefeathers, our horseradish, leek kraut your steak has been craving. Our seasonal, tangy Apple a Day, made with Silva’s Orchards organic pippins, onions and fennel seeds, will be back next fall. All krauts made with Sonoma sea salt.
History/Philosophy: Farmhouse Culture preserves local, farm-fresh vegetables the old-fashioned way. “Culturing” is a time-honored tradition that has been used for centuries to preserve and extend the harvest seasons. Farmhouse Culture founder Kathryn Lukas’ interest in kraut was first piqued in Germany, where she was the chef-owner of a popular neighborhood restaurant in Stuttgart for several years. She explored fermenting traditions from around the world and started developing her own recipes. Soon her kitchen counters were lined with crocks, and friends and neighbors were clamoring for kraut, and a business was born.
“We’re offering our customers a unique taste of what flourishes here along the central Pacific coast. Each batch of Farmhouse Culture sauerkraut is made with care, as an authentic expression of the beautiful place where we live,” said Kathryn.
From Cabbage to Kraut
Kathryn and her crew create every batch of Farmhouse Culture kraut by hand. The sauerkraut is made in small batches, starting with nothing more than raw organic vegetables and local sea salt from the Sonoma coast. Finely shredded cabbage and chunky vegetables are layered with salt and packed into barrels. Over the first couple of days, the salt draws out excess liquid from the vegetables, making them tender and pliable. As the vegetables subside into this natural brine, nature takes over and the process of lacto-fermentation begins.
Over the next week, a sharp, earthy scent envelops the room—a little like fresh apple cider, with a dash of vinegar and a hint of pickle. After two to three weeks the bulky, crunchy vegetables have relaxed into tangy shreds of long-lasting, delicious sauerkraut.
Kraut — a True Superfood
Sauerkraut is high in Vitamin C and full of beneficial pro-biotic enzymes. Naturally fermented raw vegetables are rich in lactic acid, an essential aid to good digestion. There are more vitamins in raw sauerkraut than in raw cabbage, since the fermentation process boosts and concentrates vitamin levels and digestibility. Raw sauerkraut may also have anti-carcinogenic benefits — benefits that are largely lost when kraut is industrially processed.
Make Your Own Kraut!
Kathryn teaches classes on making kraut that also includes the history, science and health benefits of this amazing food. Check her website for details: www.farmhouseculture.com.