The sauerkraut only took 4 weeks to complete the fermentation process this year. We tested it by tasting it! It was crunchy and tasted like kraut. This year we used 4 smaller crocks instead of one large crock, plus we made it in September and not December. The room temperature was a constant 67 degrees.
I let the juices of the kraut form on the plate and when mold started to form, I skimmed that off and tasted the kraut. I put the plate back on, after cleaning the mold off, and got ready for the canning process.
The clean canning jars were packed fairly tightly, to the top of the jar, leaving 1/2 inch from the top. Leave some of the juice on the top of the jars. I like the wide mouth jars because they are easier to pack tightly. A hot water bather method was used for canning. I set the jars in warm water, then brought up to a slow boil. After about 30 minutes (for pints) the water was turned off and the jars removed from the water bath and let cool on a wire rack. You will hear the jars seal as they cool. They make a pop sound.
These can be stored for a couple of years in a cool, dark area like a basement or root cellar. Enjoy!