Here's my video on how to make your own sauerkraut, pounded, but without any special equipment.
When you finish making the sauerkraut, keep it out as long as you can. While it will taste good after 3-7 days, depending on the weather (warm weather will make it be ready faster), you'll have many more beneficial bacteria in the sauerkraut if you keep it out of the fridge longer, like a few weeks to a month.
When you're ready to use it, stick it in the fridge where it should last months and months.
It'll be slightly bubbly when it's fermenting, that's very fine. It may even bubble over the top of the container if you fill it all the way up to the top. That's also fine. The longer you leave it, the more the bubbles will die down. The bacteria let off gases (carbon dioxide) as a byproduct of fermentation. If your mason jar is sealed tightly, the pressure can build up and the jar can potentially explode, so release the cover of the jar and "burp it" once every day or two when it's out.
Try to make sure all the cabbage is submerged beneath the liquid at all times. If there isn't enough liquid to cover it, add some liquid.
You can use this sauerkraut raw, as is, as a condiment, or you can use it cooked in a multitude of dishes, such as nokdu bidaetteok, Korean mung bean pancakes, okonomiyaki, Japanese cabbage pancakes, in borsht, in sweet and sour cabbage soup, or in stuffed or unstuffed cabbage.
Edited to add: I am aware of the controversy regarding mason jar ferments.
I have read many posts on the topic of fermenting that's not done in a Harsch crock or a Pickle-it jar, especially the many posts written by Kerry Ann on CookingTF.com, that there are mold spores in ferments done in mason jars, and that the only way to make a ferment properly is by making it anaerobicaly in the Pickle-It or Harsch crock... and honestly I don't buy it.
Much as I like Kerry Ann, when someone comes out with a "new life changing discovery" in the real food world, I take it with a big grain of salt, as I would if it was in the standard medical world, especially if its saying that the way people did things traditionally in the past was wrong. Especially if the "new and improved way, and only ok way" involves buying an expensive product that didn't exist 100 years ago.
I've spoken to people from traditional cultures around the world who make kraut with their family recipes and techniques- none used a Pickle-It or Harsch crock- all used methods similar to mine.
And as for mold spores- mold spores are everywhere, in everything we eat, etc. If your vegetable wasnt picked 3 minutes ago, there are mold spores on it. Actually, there might be mold spores on it even while still growing. If you cook a dish, and it has stared to cool down, mold spores will start growing on it. Especially if you are eating any leftovers or fruit or veggies thats in past prime condition, even if you cut out the bad parts.
I don't see how mold spores in ferments are any more dangerous/bad for you than mold spores in anything else. Once the mold spores grow enough that it overtakes something and it gets moldy looking, that's when it gets unsafe to eat, not just the little bit of minor mold spores found in everything. So as long as your ferment isn't moldy, slimy, goopy, or gross looking, it should be just as safe to eat as anything else. If you have a specific mold allergy, that's another story, and then you shouldn't be eating any leftovers either. But that isn't true for the standard person.
Are you a sauerkraut fan? Have you ever made homemade sauerkraut? How do you make yours? If you've never made it before, do you think you'll give it a try now?