I have 5 - 6 lbs of sauerkraut in a crock with a water vacuum seal. I read that the first 24 - 48 hours are crucial to the success of the kraut. I also read that the kraut should develop its own liquid during this time, and that one can pour boiled water on top if it doesn't. However, I also read that it shouldn't be disturbed for a fairly long period of time. I am a bit confused. Should I check on the progress after a few days, or not?

up vote 9 down vote accepted

Don't check on it.

When I lived in Virginia I used to drive up to Pennsylvania every year to this little Amish farm to buy a gallon of the best sauerkraut I've ever tasted. They showed you how they made it, and I remember the farmer stressing two things: (1) sterilize the jars, (2) don't touch it for 2 months.

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    I am using a harsch crock, and sterilized it prior to putting the salted cabbage in. I think I will resist opening it as long at least for 4 - 6 weeks. – mamadalgas Sep 15 '10 at 0:18

I allow mine to ferment at 65-70 deg. F for 7 weeks.

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    Do you want to add more detail to your process, e.g. quantities of salt, how you maintain liquid levels, and whether you seal the kraut or just cover? – mfg Mar 22 '12 at 19:33

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