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Best Choucroute Garnie Recipes

Best Choucroute Garnie Recipes



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Choucroute Garnie Shopping Tips

Ingredients like olive oil, shallots, mustard, cream, stock, and butter will help bring French flavors to your cooking.

Choucroute Garnie Cooking Tips

French cuisine is renowned for slow-cooked sauces, however a quick pan sauce will do just as well; after sautéing a piece of meat or fish, remove it from the pan, deglaze with brandy or wine, finish with a touch of butter or cream and voilà!


Choucroute Garnie

Choucroute Garnie is a famous Alsatian recipe for sauerkraut with sausages (normally pork), cured meats and charcuterie, and even sometimes potatoes.

Although sauerkraut is a traditional German dish it has been widely adopted in France.

Where we live in Aquitaine, its amazing how many times I have heard French friends organise evenings just to eat choucroute, This is a very popular dish all over France.

  • 750g smoked streaky pork (smoked pancetta)
  • 450g kassler (smoked loin of pork) or a piece of smoked back bacon
  • 4 medium meaty smoked sausages
  • 4 meaty sausages, such as Toulouse
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 8 juniper berries
  • 1tsp caraway seeds
  • 1tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1tbsp vegetable oil for frying
  • 1 small white cabbage
  • 1 large onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1tsp caraway seeds
  • 1tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 juniper berries
  • 1 big glass of white wine
  • 50ml white wine vinegar
  • 1 medium potato, peeled and finely grated

One Day before, Cut the smoked pork & bacon into 4 to 5cm chunks, put in a bowl of water and leave overnight in the fridge. (You don't need to soak the pancetta or kassler).

Start with the meats.
Wash the soaked meats under a cold tap for a few minutes, then put it into a large saucepan (add the pancetta now if you are using it) and top up with water until the meat is just covered. Add the onions, juniper, caraway and mustard seeds and the bay leaf. Bring to the boil and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until the meat is tender. The water may need topping once or twice so check after an hour or so.

Add the sausages (and kassler) and simmer for another 30 minutes. Remove the pieces of meat and sausages and strain the liquid through a fine-meshed sieve into a container and keep 1/3 of the liqiud seperate to reheat the meats later.

Now for the cabbage..
Cut out the root out of the cabbage and finely shred the leaves.

In a thick-bottomed pan, add the vegetable oil and gently cook the onions, caraway seeds, mustard seeds, bayleaf and juniper berries, for 4-5 minutes until soft, not burnt.

Add the white wine, vinegar, potato and shredded cabbage to the softened onions and cover with the strained liquid you cooked the meat in.

Bring to the boil, stirring occasionally, then cover and simmer for 40 minutes, stirring every 10-12mins, Untill there is nearly no liquid left, just a little cooking liquid. Season with salt and pepper.

When you are ready to serve..
Put the 1/3 cooking liquid you saved early in the sauce pan, bring to the boil, and add the cooked meats.

Put the cabbage in a large serving dish and spoon the reheated meat and sausages over the top.

Serve with some strong mustard, French bread and German beer.


Recipe Summary

  • 5 or 6 pounds drained sauerkraut
  • 25 whole black peppercorns
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 15 juniper berries
  • 6 fresh sprigs flat-leaf parsley
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup goose fat
  • 4 medium onions, sliced 1/8-inch thick
  • 1 1/2 cups Riesling or other dry white wine
  • 2 cups homemade or canned low-sodium chicken broth, skimmed of fat
  • 1 slab (1 1/2 pounds) dry-salted bacon, rinsed and dried
  • 1 slab (1 1/2 pounds) smoked bacon
  • 2 dry-salted pig's knuckles, (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 pound smoked pork butt
  • 3 carrots, peeled
  • 1/4 cup finely minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 8 small red potatoes, peeled
  • 4 white veal sausages (weisswurst or bockwurst about 4 ounces each)
  • 4 smoked country sausages (bauerwurst about 4 ounces each)
  • 4 knackwurst sausages (about 4 ounces each)

Place sauerkraut in a colander set in the sink rinse with warm water, and drain.

Make bouquet garni: Place peppercorns, coriander seeds, cloves, juniper berries, parsley, thyme, and bay leaves on square of cheesecloth tie with kitchen twine.

Melt goose fat in very large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add sliced onions cook, stirring frequently, until onions are translucent but not brown, about 10 minutes.

Add wine, chicken stock, and 2 cups water to Dutch oven stir to combine. Add dry-salted bacon, smoked bacon, pig's knuckles, pork butt, carrots, garlic, salt, and bouquet garni. Lay washed and drained sauerkraut on top of mixture in Dutch oven. Add enough cold water to bring liquid to 1 inch below sauerkraut. Cover, increase heat to high, and bring liquid to boil. Reduce heat to low cook at strong simmer for 1 1/2 hours.

Add potatoes simmer, covered, until potatoes are just becoming tender, about 30 minutes more. Add sausages simmer, covered, until heated through, about 10 minutes more.

Remove bouquet garni and discard. To serve choucroute garni on platter, remove meat, potatoes, and carrots from Dutch oven. Drain sauerkraut, and place in middle of serving platter. Slice bacon and pork butt. Arrange meat, potatoes, and carrots around sauerkraut on platter.


The Meats

A good chunk of Steingarten's essay on choucroute is spent trying to figure out how to replicate the traditional cuts and sausages used in Alsace with what's available in the United States. He zigzags all over New York in search of a butcher who can cut him just one of the many French-style cuts he's after. While it makes for great reading, it's not a sustainable approach.

The fact of the matter is, animals are butchered differently in each country, and sausage types vary quite a bit, so what they can get there and what we can get here won't ever be exactly the same. That's fine.

More important is to understand the role each cut plays in the larger dish, and to assemble something similar using whatever you can find where you live. Look at most choucroute recipes and you'll find some combination of fresh, salted, and smoked pork. To complicate matters, those cuts are sometimes lean ones that dry out if overcooked, and sometimes tough, fatty ones that require long cooking to soften. It's not uncommon to find recipes that throw all of them in the pot together and cook them until the toughest ones are tender and the lean ones are dry. Let's not do that, okay?

Fresh Meats

Your best bets for fresh pork are the shoulder and loin. The shoulder is a tough cut that needs plenty of time for its collagen-rich connective tissues to melt into succulent gelatin, while the loin is basically the opposite—lean, and at risk of dryness.

The shoulder is easy: Just throw it in the pot at the beginning, and cook it until it's tender. Sure, you could brown it first, but, to be honest, it's pretty freaking terrific all by itself after a few hours in the pot—unbelievably tender and flavorful from all its time with the kraut.

The loin, on the other hand, requires care. I cook the choucroute in a low oven after starting it on the stove (more on that below), so I take advantage of that setup by putting the loin in the oven at the same time.

Cooking the loin in a low oven before searing is a technique we often employ, called the reverse sear. It allows the meat to gently come up to the perfect internal temperature as soon as it reaches that point, you can take it out and hold it until the rest of the food is ready, with no risk of it overcooking. As long as you're waiting, you might as well sear the exterior of the loin for a deeper, roasted flavor. Then, just set it aside until it's ready to be added to the pot right at the end to warm through one final time.

One option for both the fresh shoulder and the loin is to pre-salt them a day or two ahead, leaving them uncovered on a wire rack in the fridge. Doing this gives the salt a chance to penetrate more deeply into the meat, dissolving a muscle protein called myosin. This reduces the amount by which the muscle contracts when heated, in turn reducing the amount of juice that's pushed out of the meat as it cooks. The result is juicier meat that's more deeply seasoned.

I don't think the pre-salting step is a required one, but it is helpful—even more so when you consider that in the United States, we have very few of the salted-pork options that often go into a true Alsatian choucroute. Pre-salting your fresh meats can help you mimic some of the effect from the salted meats you probably won't be getting from butchers here in the US. It won't create a full-on salted-pork product, but it gets you a hair closer than totally fresh meat, especially if you salt it with a heavy hand.

Salted Meats

In Alsace, as mentioned above, you'll find many more salted-pork options than we have stateside—salted loin, salted belly, and more. In some US markets, it's possible that you won't be able to locate any salted pork at all, in which case it's fine to just omit it.

I was able to get my hands on some salted pork belly, which is a good cut if you can find it. It's much more like a fresh belly in texture than, say, pancetta, which is also salted pork belly, but too heavily salted and cured for this application. Pure-fat salt pork, like fatback, is also not a good option here, since you want a meatier cut.

If you do find some salt pork that can work, you'll want to simmer it in water while the choucroute is in the oven. This will draw out some of its salt, making it more palatable, and will also get it pretty far down the road to being fully cooked and tender. It can go into the choucroute pot later on so that the flavors mingle before the dish is served.

Smoked Meats

When it comes to smoked meats, we have a lot more options. Fatty, tougher cuts, like slab bacon and ham hocks, can go into the Dutch oven at the beginning to slowly cook with the kraut.

Lean and tender cuts, like smoked pork chops, should go in only at the end, just long enough to heat them through—they're already fully cooked anyway, so they don't need any extra time in the pot.

Sausages

Once again, most of us outside France don't have access to some of the classic sausages in choucroute, like Strasbourg sausages, French-style blood sausages, and more. C'est la vie. We can still make do.

I grabbed a mix of German-style emulsified wieners, like frankfurters, weisswurst, and knackwurst. French options, like boudin blanc and boudin noir, would be great, too, if you can find them.

We could throw all the sausages into the choucroute with everything else, but then we'd risk them bursting in the heat. Instead, I like to gently poach them on the stovetop until they're heated through—it's a technique we also use for grilled sausages.

Once they're poached, you can then keep them warm and add them to the pot shortly before serving to bathe them in the kraut's flavor. If you want, you can also sear some of them in a hot skillet after they've been warmed from poaching I don't usually bother, but it's an option open to you if you're so inclined.


  • 4 teaspoons salt
  • 2 chocolate bar biscuit croissant topping
  • 1 jelly cotton candy
  • ½ jelly gummies
  • 2 cups liquorice chocolate
  • 2 jelly beans bonbon
  • 2 caramels tart gummi bears
  • 6 butterscotch caramel lollipops
  • 12 tbsp butter
  • ¼ cup sugar

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Choucroute Garnie – Because Peasant Food is the Best Food

I have mentioned it before and I will probably always think this way, that in most cases, across multiple cultures, peasant food is the best food.

The poor folks have had to do much more with much less and had to find a way to survive. They did it with grace, lots of love, and even beauty.

The choucroute garnie is such a dish. Simple in its design but super delicious and hard to screw up.

The choucroute garnie, literally translates as “garnished sauerkraut” and has heritage in Europe, specifically France, where most food historians say the dish originated from the Alsace region, near the German border.

The choucroute garnie is essentially scraps of meat, most often pork, slowly cooked (braised) in hearty vegetables like cabbage, kraut, and onions. You could probably do potatoes, other root veg like carrots and rutabaga and parsnips. All of that in a dish with the pork cuts nestled on top and a bottle of beer, wine, cider, or even water would be delicious. Throw in some mustard and caraway seeds, some bay leaves and maybe some juniper and you are asking for trouble, a delicious kind of trouble.

I have made this several times. A few in my oven but mostly on my Traeger. I typically serve it when there are a lot of people, especially those that share my same philosophy on simple and delicious, “poor people” food.

Serve it for Sunday dinner. Hosting your friends. A book club where there are no books. You name it, you can do it. The choucroute garnie has never let me down and probably hasn’t let anyone down from France over the last century or two either.

Choucroute Garnie

1/2 head of cabbage, sliced thin
1 quart sauerkraut
2 large onions, sliced
4 bay leaves
1 T caraway seeds and juniper berries
Black Pepper
1-2 lb pork shoulder
1 lb smoked sausage
1 pork tenderloin
1 bottle Riesling, 3 cups beer, cider, stock or water
Salt

Put all veg on bottom of roasting pan, add meat and generously salt and pepper. Pour over wine or beer or whatever. Cover with aluminum foil. Cook at 300 degrees for 2 hours. Uncover and cook at 450 degrees for 25-45 minutes or until middle of pork shoulder is at 165 degrees. I usually like to add the sausage half way.

Serve with baguette, great butter, and as many unique mustards as you can find.

Let people pull off some meat, or slice it nicely if you like, and pile on high the kraut, cabbage, and onions and serve with a hunk of bread and butter and a favorite mustard or two.


This Choucroute Garnie Recipe is German-French Fusion at its Finest

Comfort food never goes out of style. The German-influenced region of France, Alsace, provides the classic choucroute garnie. This dish cooks down sauerkraut with sausage, pork, potatoes, and other delicious accoutrements. With these instructions from notable Hudson Valley Chef Waldy Malouf, the satisfying French supper can be prepared at home.

Choucroute Garnie

Ingredients:

2 ½ pounds sauerkraut
8 pieces slab bacon, thick 2” slices
2 cups finely sliced onions
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 tart apple, peeled, cored and chopped
2 cups chicken stock
2 cups white wine (preferably Riesling)
1 bottle of beer (12oz)
1 smoked ham hock
4 bone in pork chops
8 pieces (3”) garlic sausage or white veal sausage
8 pieces (3”) knockwurst or bratwurst
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons caraway seeds
Salt and pepper
6 medium-size red skin potatoes, quartered

Drain sauerkraut, reserving juice.

In a large casserole, sauté bacon over medium heat until almost crisp. Remove leaving fat in casserole. Add onions and sauté until soft. Add garlic and apple and cook, stirring, several minutes. Add sauerkraut and add stock, wine and beer and half of the sauerkraut juice. Bring to a simmer. Place all the meat in the casserole, cover the meat with sauerkraut.

Add bay leaf and caraway seeds. Season to taste with salt and pepper. It should be wet, if not add some juice and/or chicken stock. Cover and bake 2 hours. Add potatoes to casserole, cover and bake 1 hour.

Serve choucroute directly from casserole, or spread sauerkraut on a platter, and top with meats and potatoes. Serve with mustards.


  • 3 tbsp. rendered duck or goose fat or unsalted butter
  • 3 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 lb. sauerkraut, rinsed, drained, and squeezed dry
  • 2 tsp. dried juniper berries
  • 2 bay leaves, preferably fresh
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 1 raw pigs knuckles
  • 1 (1 lb.) piece uncured slab bacon (a piece about 4” wide)
  • 1 (1 lb.) piece double-smoked slab bacon (a piece about 4” wide)
  • 1 rack (about 1 lb.) baby back pork ribs, halved
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 (750-ml.) bottle dry Riesling
  • 6 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and quartered
  • 3 Alsatian knacks or German frankfurters
  • Horseradish sauce, for serving
  • Whole-grain mustard, for serving
  1. Melt fat and butter in a 6-qt. Dutch oven over medium-low. Cook onion until slightly golden, about 15 minutes. Stir in sauerkraut, juniper berries, and bay leaves season with salt. Arrange knuckles, both bacon, and ribs over top. Sprinkle with garlic and add wine boil. Reduce heat to medium-low simmer, covered, for 2 hours. Uncover and add potatoes cook, covered, until meat and potatoes are tender, 1 hour and 15 minutes more.
  2. About 20 minutes before serving, bring knacks to a simmer in a 4-qt. saucepan over medium cook until heated through, about 15 minutes.
  3. To serve, transfer meat and potatoes, including knacks to a bowl. Transfer sauerkraut to a large serving platter top with meat and potatoes. Serve with horseradish sauce and mustard on the side.

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  • 4 teaspoons salt
  • 2 chocolate bar biscuit croissant topping
  • 1 jelly cotton candy
  • ½ jelly gummies
  • 2 cups liquorice chocolate
  • 2 jelly beans bonbon
  • 2 caramels tart gummi bears
  • 6 butterscotch caramel lollipops
  • 12 tbsp butter
  • ¼ cup sugar

Every Recipe, Every Rating, Every Video from Every Magazine & Every Episode!

  • 25 years of Cook's Illustrated, Cook's Country, and America's Test Kitchen foolproof recipes
  • NEW!

Dear Home Cook,

If we were new to our websites, we might think, “It’s easy to get free recipes on the Internet. What makes your recipes different?” Well, unlike recipes from blogs, message boards, and other recipe sites, our recipes are exhaustively tested by our team of full-time test cooks until they offer consistently great results. That means fried chicken with a crunchy coating and moist meat, a low-fat recipe makeover for macaroni and cheese that’s as creamy and cheesy as the full-fat version, and fork-tender slow cooker pot roast.

We’re obsessive in our quest to find and foolproof the best of American home cooking, from fuss-free weeknight dinners, to updated, simplified versions of regional specialties, to slow cooker and make ahead meals. Our all access membership is the only place you can find every foolproof recipe, TV episode, and objective ratings and test results for cookware and supermarket ingredients from all 25 years of Cook’s Country, America’s Test Kitchen, and Cook’s Illustrated.

Let us make a simple, no-nonsense offer. Try out all three of our websites FREE for a 14-Day, No-Hassle Trial Offer. We’re pretty confident that your All-Access membership will quickly become invaluable resources for everything from a quick Tuesday supper to your next get-together with family and friends.


The Thirty Years’ War, which came to an end in 1648, gave Europe the concept of a strong sovereign state and gave France choucroute garnie. With the annexation of Alsace and Lorraine, France gained important strategic and gastronomic high ground. But enough dusty history. What of the dish? Sauerkraut, cooked with bacon, stock, and dry white wine, then garnished with pork—lots of pork. I’ll give you the knowledge to make all of the components on the following pages, and here you can bring them together in one grand dish. Don’t forget a crisp salad and copious amounts of crisp Riesling (Albert Boxler or Dönnhoff will do nicely) as perfect accompaniments.

Ingredients

SERVES 8
2 bay leaves
10 black peppercorns
16 small fingerling potatoes
8 slices bacon, cut crosswise into thin lardons
21⁄2 pounds (1.1 kg) Kielbasa, cut crosswise
4 Bratwurst, cut crosswise
4 Frankfurters, cut crosswise
21⁄2 pounds (1.1 kg) Sauerkraut
1 tablespoon caraway seeds, toasted
2 cups (480 ml) chicken stock
1 cup (240 ml) dry Riesling
8 (1⁄8-inch/4-mm) slices OP Sweetheart Ham
Whole-grain mustard, for serving

Directions
1 In a medium pot, bring plenty of salted water to a boil along with
the bay leaves and peppercorns. Taste the water—you want it to be
saltier than the cooked potatoes. Add the potatoes and boil until
tender when pierced with a fork, about 20 minutes. Drain and let
cool, and then slice each potato in half lengthwise. Set the potatoes
aside.
2 In a large Dutch oven over medium-low heat, sauté the bacon
until crisp and its fat has rendered, about 20 minutes. Using a
slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a small bowl and set aside.
Increase the heat to medium and add the kielbasa, bratwurst,
and frankfurters to the pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the
sausages are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add the sauerkraut,
caraway seeds, chicken stock, Riesling, and the cooked bacon and
stir to combine. Cook, covered, until the sauerkraut is crisp-tender
(as cooked cabbage should be), about 15 minutes. Add the potatoes
and stir in, then add the ham slices on top and continue to cook
until the potatoes and ham are just heated through, 5 to 6 minutes.
Divide the dish evenly among eight plates, and top each with a
dollop of mustard.


Watch the video: Choucroute (August 2022).