July 10, 2013

Sauerbraten Success

Late last night, the Sailor and I feasted on the marinated sauerbraten, salted boiled potatoes and red cabbage.

Here's the basic recipe, adapted from my thrifted copy of The Art of German Cooking, by Betty Wason. (More on this fascinating lady later. First the food.) 

I marinated my two-pound chunk of meat in a beer mixture for the Bavarian style of sauerbraten (apparently there are several ways to make this dish -- the main thrust is that the meat needs to marinate in a vinegar type mixture, including wine or even buttermilk). In addition to a few cups of Belgium dark beer, I added water, a bay leaf, lemon, tomato, onion, and several whole cloves and whole peppercorn and let it sit in the fridge for two days, turning the meat several times. 

After two days, I strained the marinade, dredged the beef in flour, and then browned it on the stove top in butter.

Next, I added one cup of the strained marinade, a sliced lemon, a little sugar and some salt and then simmered the roast for two hours, turning the meat halfway through cooking. (Next time, I'll add more of the strained marinade -- I didn't think there was enough liquid in the pot while it was cooking.

Of course if your roast is larger, it will probably take longer to cook. I think my own sauerbraten could have simmered even longer, even though the meat was already falling apart.

For gravy, I skimmed the juice and mixed it in with a little sour cream... just in case the rest of the sauer / sour ingredients aren't enough for you!

The recipe called for potato dumplings and red cabbage to go with the sauerbraten... and while I'm ambitious and wanted to have as authentic a German meal as possible, I simply didn't have the energy to make dumplings.

I made salted potatoes instead. 

The potatoes were nothing fancy... but the red cabbage was probably the hit of the meal. I'll post that recipe later, but here's a sneak peak: 

While the Sailor and I agreed that our usual standard roast with chutney was slightly better, the sauerbraten got accolades all around. I knew it was definitely better than average when we both reached for seconds of everything.

I suspect my high school German teacher would have been proud of the sauerbraten success. (Probably more so had I actually translated the recipe from German... Ja?)

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