Many times when I've been on holiday I've had sauerkraut or choucroute as they call it in France but I've never managed to find a good German sauerkraut recipe.
It came to me however that the flavor is not necessarily in the cabbage but in the meat that goes with it so I decided that the best thing would be to make my own recipe using standard shop bought sauerkraut cabbage and then adding my own smoked meats – after all, it's not just about smoking meat, it's also about how to get the most out of them.
So in order to get this recipe prepared you're going to have to prepare a few smoked items in advance but once you've done it for the first time it'll become clear. In fact I now tend to think about it the other way so if I'm cooking some meat, I then think about what other things I can throw in the smoker to make sure that I've got a good range of smoked ingredients to make something hearty with all the leftovers.
In this recipe the main smoked ingredient is roast pork belly and I've supplemented with some smoked sausage and some frankfurters that I've grilled just to give the sausages an extra char flavor.
Serves:- 4 people
Preparation Time:- 15 minutes
Cooking Time:- 15 minutes
Total Time:- 30 minutes
There are a lot of processed ingredients is this German sauerkraut recipe so unfortunately I can't be prescriptive other than to recommend that you read the ingredients list on any of the ready made products called for.
Empty the contents of the sauerkraut jar into a large pan and warm gently. Now chop up the belly pork and thinly slice the smoked sausage and throw them into the pot too. Cover and let the pot simmer gently for as long as you can resist that smell! (Realistically it needs 15 minutes to come up to temperature gently and to allow some time for the flavors to mix together.)
Warm the frankfurters through on the grill (they are already cooked so you only need to give them 5 minutes) and cut them in two.
Plate up the sauerkraut and add a couple of frankfurters to the top.
Serve simply with crusty bread and beer.
Note: As with many of these mixes I find that this sauerkraut recipe is better refrigerated and warmed through the next day to get the truly wonderful combination of flavors. Congratulations if you can wait that long!