Appalachia Through My Eyes Granny

Appalachia Through My Eyes – Christmas Kraut

jars of kraut sitting on porch

The other day we were down at Granny’s and I heard her tell The Deer Hunter “Come out on the porch with me I’ve got something I want to give you.”

I couldn’t resist being nosy so I tiptoed to the door where I could hear what they were doing.

Granny told him “I want you to have a jar of my kraut. I think it’s the best I’ve ever made.”

The Deer Hunter thanked her and she said “Well it’s your Christmas present. You know they say Christmas comes in July too.”


Appalachia Through My Eyes – A series of photographs from my life in Southern Appalachia.

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  • Reply
    Emily in Austin, Texas
    July 26, 2019 at 4:28 pm

    Tipper, Your Granny is one of the wisest people , those who know that Christmas is any or every day, not just one day on a calendar. Lucky Deer Hunter! She definitely loves him.
    My grandmother Adams shared the custom that visitors either had to stay longer, or eat something on the spot, or carry something home with them. No one went away with empty hands. I try to carry that on, but usually what I have to offer is flowers from the garden. A poor second to her offerings, but we do what we can. Nothing beats homemade pickles (especially okra), kraut, or piccalilli. Unless it was her mustang grape or wild plum jelly.

  • Reply
    H. Anthony Couch
    July 25, 2019 at 11:12 pm

    My mom loved to can. If you visited and left with something she gave you, that was a sure sign she liked you. Most everybody left with something.

    • Reply
      Robert Warren
      September 12, 2019 at 11:31 pm

      Reminds me of my young days. Some with Mom and her sisters. I’m 86 August 10th.

  • Reply
    July 25, 2019 at 7:22 pm

    I think food – and especially home-made or home-raised food – is such a perfect gift! Happy Christmas to the Deer Hunter 🙂

  • Reply
    July 25, 2019 at 11:11 am

    We love sauerkraut but have never made it. We buy it in a plastic bag or glass jar. The stuff in a can tastes like a can.

  • Reply
    Wanda Devers
    July 25, 2019 at 10:00 am

    Mama’s kraut sat out on the porch, too, until it quit “working”. It was so good!

  • Reply
    July 25, 2019 at 9:16 am

    Mom loved to admire her kraut after it was put in the jars. If it was nice and white, she thought it was better. I’m not sure if it tasted better but it got more compliments. It didn’t matter to me what color it was as long as I had a big plate full to eat with my soup beans and taters. I hope the Deer Hunter shares his Christmas in July present.

  • Reply
    Ken Roper
    July 25, 2019 at 9:09 am

    One time (when I still gardened a lot), I decided to make Kraut in Pint Jars. I had a friend who worked at Stanley Furniture, James Hooper would come over to my shop just about every day. His Mama was about 94 and she made her Kraut in Jars. I remember the husband took little bitty steps to keep from falling. I’d see him coming down the road and would have to use a transit to see whether he was coming or going.

    But James had told me about Mrs. Hooper making a few jars of Kraut so I called her and if she’d share the recipe with me and she agreed. I had never made Kraut before, especially in jars, so I gathered several Cabbage from my garden, chopped that stuff up and put it in Pint Jars. Then I salted and peppered to my taste and put the lids and rings on, not too tight as Mrs Hooper had instructed me and set all the jars in a place where it wouldn’t be disturbed for 14 days.

    Well, my uncle-in-law came by and tried a jar and said “that stuff is so Sour, it’d make a Pig Squeel.” That’s what I wanted to hear, so I fixed them a plate of my green beans, Mountain Trout, and sliced tomatoes for Mr. and Mrs. Hooper and took it to them. They were both pleased.

    They’re both dead now, I went to their funerals, but they don’t make friends like that anymore. …Ken

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    July 25, 2019 at 8:12 am

    Sounds like my Grandma. Couldn’t go to her house and leave empty handed. The hours and hours of work she put in to have fruit and vegetables to give away, fresh in summer and canned the rest of the year. She must have passed it on somehow because I do the same thing just a lot less if it. Makes me think of those women mentioned in the Bible who, concerning Jesus, were said to “minister unto him of their substance”.

    There are foods that get revenge on me now that didn’t use to. I used to like kraut in pinto beans. Alas, I do not want to pay the price. For those who have thus far escaped, I’m glad for you. You can enjoy my share.

  • Reply
    Gayle Larson
    July 25, 2019 at 7:54 am

    Loved Granny’s Christmas in July comment.
    My birthday is in December and my Mother thought I got short-changed so she would have a half birthday for me in July
    I always asked for Kraut and hot dogs. We also always had Pork and Kraut for New Years Day for prosperity in the following year. Great memories.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    July 25, 2019 at 7:26 am

    Granny is always willing to share her bounty! Christmas in July is always a fun thing. Making that kraut is not an easy thing to do, it takes talent. I’ve never been able to make good kraut, I don’t even try anymore!

    • Reply
      Ed Ammons
      July 25, 2019 at 9:55 am

      Making kraut is easy. The hard part is explaining why it smells like your teenage son’s sweaty tennis shoes!

  • Reply
    July 25, 2019 at 6:36 am

    What a great gift! Kraut making was the way I discovered The Blind Pig several years ago, and I have been a fan ever since. Maybe Granny can share her recipe? Many wonderful posts later, and I am so much more knowledgeable about my wonderful Appalachia. Unfortunately, with so much good reading I was deterred from my original google to find a good kraut recipe. Kraut is just one of the foods that make regular food fit for a king. One of my all time favorites growing up was kraut and weiners.

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