Meaning 'sour cabbage' in German, this dish of fermented cabbage is commonly served as an accompaniment to sausages and to pork cuts, such as pork knuckle or leg. Sauerkraut results from the natural lactic acid fermentation of salted, shredded cabbage. It takes up to a week to prepare, so for convenience, we have used store-bought sauerkraut, which we cook and flavour. Cooking the sausages on skewers helps them to retain their shape. You will need 8 x 20 cm metal skewers, however, they are not essential.
- 80 g butter, chopped
- 200 g speck (see Note), cut into lardons
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 700 g (4 cups firmly packed) sauerkraut (see Note)
- 500 ml (2 cups) dry white wine
- 8 (about 600 g) veal and/or pork sausages
- mustard and crusty bread, to serve
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Melt butter in a large, heavy-based saucepan over medium heat. Add speck and garlic, and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until lightly browned. Add sauerkraut, wine and 250 ml water. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour or until liquid is almost evaporated. Season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, thread sausages onto 8 x 20 cm metal skewers. Heat a large frying pan over medium heat and cook sausages, turning, for 10 minutes or until browned and cooked through. Serve with sauerkraut, mustard and crusty bread.
To make sauerkraut from scratch, visit sbs.com.au/food for a full recipe.
Speck is a German-style smoked bacon from selected delis, butchers and supermarkets. Substitute streaky bacon or pancetta.
Sauerkraut is pickled cabbage available from delis and selected supermarkets in jars or vacuum-packed bags.
As seen in Feast magazine, Issue 9, pg63.
Photography by John Laurie.