I’ve also been starting seeds indoors with all my students to get them ready and excited for the planting season ahead in their school gardens. It’s been a really grey and dark few months and growing seedlings inside gives them a chance to think about the outdoors and really get their hands messy. Just look at these faces! The excitement of putting their hands in dirt is contagious. For many of the little ones, ages 2-4, this is their first experience planting anything and also the first time many of them have heard of or seen some of these vegetables.
It’s truly amazing when I hear from a parent of one of the students I teach, tell me how their child has come home and role played an entire lesson to them. This is how it works. The kids teach the parents and there is no struggle surrounding vegetables and getting their kids to try new things. Children are innately curious, and in a workshop or classroom setting are eager and excited to try anything new.
Asian greens, brassicas, mustards, spinach, and certain types of cold hardy lettuces can survive most of the fall and winter in our climate. Some new varieties I’m planting this year include Red Striped Mauna, Toy Choi (a baby bok choy), Mache, TFM Frizzee, Red Wave Mustard, Astro Arugula and Clayton. I ordered them online from West Coast Seeds. All these greens can be planted very early in the spring when the weather is above 4 Celsius.
1 Red Cabbage (3lbs)
1 Green Cabbage (3lbs)
6 T Himalayan Pink Salt
Sterilized Glass Jars (just clean with soapy water and place in boiling water for 15 mins)
Clean glass that fits into opening of glass jar or clean and boiled rock
Large non-metal mixing bowl
1. Start by shredding the cabbages finely either in a food processor or a box grater. My littlest one loves to put the hunks of cabbage and squish them down in the food processor and watching them get shredded up.
2. Pour the contents into a big bowl, big enough so that there is room to mix it up.
3. Spinkle half the salt overtop of the shredded cabbage and flip around to distribute.
4. Add the remaining salt and massage cabbage for 5-10 mins squeezing to crush the cabbage a bit and extract some of the liquid. This is my kids favourite part - getting their hands right in and making a mess.
5. Stuff cabbage into glass jars pushing down between layers to remove air pockets and extract some liquid. Leave room at top, about 1 inch, for expansion due to fermentation.
6. Place glass full of water on top of the cabbage pushing down slightly so that all the cabbage is underneath the liquid. If there is not enough liquid add some brine (1 T salt to 2 C water) until cabbage in submerged.
7. Place jars out of sunlight on counter on a plate (to catch any overflow) and let sit for at least 4 days. you will see some cloudiness and bubbling which means fermentation has started. You should try a bit after 4 days and if it's not sour enough, try in 3 more days until it's to your liking. In the fall and winter months it takes me a week to get to the level of tang that my family likes.
8. Once ready, put a lid on the jar and store in fridge .
You can add flavours to you cabbage as you massage it like dill seeds or caraway seeds. My children especially like the dill seeds as it makes the sauerkraut taste like pickles.
Enjoy your experiments!
Hi I'm Vesna Bosnar. I'm a mother, architect, gardener, explorer, educator and scientist. I want to share my love of gardening and learning through exploring and experimenting in the garden and kitchen with your family. Please join me to try out new things and allow your minds to explore all the possibilities of vegetable gardening and cooking.