It is important to note that not all vegetables are the same! Therefore, the fermentation process is different. There are essentially 3 techniques.
#1: Shredded veggies like cabbage to make Sauerkraut creates its own brine.
#2: Pickles (made from cucumbers) needs a higher salt content brine in order to make crunchy pickles. If there isn’t enough salt, you may end up with soggy pickles.
#3: Most other vegetables use a basic brine, which uses less salt compared to the pickle brine and is used to fully submerge the vegetable maintaining an anaerobic environment.
Self Brine – Depending on the amount of shredded cabbage, sprinkle about 2 teaspoons of sea salt. Start kneading it until it starts to glisten and a liquid starts to develop, approximately 5-10 minutes. At this point, it is a good idea to taste it. It should taste salty but not too salty. If you need to add more salt, do so in small amounts. Continue adding more salt until it is to your liking.
Pickle Brine – The rule of thumb is 2-3 Tablespoons per quart of water. The amount depends on the type of the salt (coarse vs fine) and taste preference. But experimentation is needed to make sure the right amount of salt will give not only the desired taste, but crunch!
Basic Brine – The rule of thumb is 1 Teaspoon – 2 Tablespoons per quart of water. The amount depends on the type of the salt (coarse vs fine) and taste preference.