Easy Pork and Sauerkraut for New Year's Day

I just got back from holiday vacation and realized I have no plan for our New Year’s Day food. I thought I had a recipe for Pork and Sauerkraut that I’ve used in the past, but I can’t find it and if I go looking online or through my cookbooks I’ll fall down a rabbit hole and never get unpacked. So, what do you eat on New Year’s and are you willing to share your recipe?

Are either of these similar to what you were doing?

That first one is pretty close. I’ve never done spare ribs, but easy enough to adapt it to work with kielbasa or a roast. This will totally work, thanks!

Hi Laura,

Pork and sauerkraut was always my birthday meal that my grandmother made for me. I love it.

I make it the way she made it. It’s not fancy, but it is too good.

I use a pork butt.

Salt and pepper the roast then Brown it in a bit of oil and butter.

Then throw 2 bags of Kraut into the pot with the roast. I always use the bagged. Never canned. Canned kraut is awful.

Add a couple t. of caraway seed. Bring to a boil. Lower temp and simmer till the pork starts to fall apart.

Add 2 T. Butter.

Bring it to very low heat.

Then peel some taters, boil and make mashed potatoes :blush:

I NEED mashed potatoes with pork and sauerkraut!

1 Like

This is exactly what i was thinking about! I didn’t see it before I went grocery shopping, ended up getting lazy and choosing kielbasa instead of pork butt and now I’m sad. (Especially because as much as I love my Florida grocery store, the Eastern European sausage selection is nothing compared to what I could find in my native Northeastern Ohio.) Guess I’ll just have to create an excuse to make this recipe sometime soon. And I agree that mashed potatoes are a must!

1 Like

Pork roast with salt & pepper & a pinch of Thyme, in a roaster with however much kraut you like & roast @ 325 degrees till tender. For a loin roast I usually figure 3 1/2 hours. Of COURSE mashed potatoes. However… much better if you make your own kraut. I know it’s a bit late for that this year.

Sauerkraut is one of those projects that I always say I’m going to do and then don’t do it. I’ve over researched my way out of doing it at least 3 times. Maybe homemade Kraut will be one of my resolutions this year.

It’s REALLY easy to make sauerkraut & despite what you’ve heard it’s not smelly at all. We almost always have a crock going in the kitchen & the smallest crock we have holds 35# of cabbage. Nobody’s ever noticed.

Also, despite the recipes you read which call for 4-6 weeks of fermentation, mine is almost always done a lot quicker. 3 weeks maximum.

I really encourage you to do it if you have an interest. The rewards far far outweigh the effort.

My signature NY dish has been Choucroute Garni pretty much every year since being fed it by my boss’s Alsatian wife at the dawn of 1974 – that’s basically braised kraut with a riot of pig products, all simmered low and slow with onion, a cut-up apple maybe, and some juniper berries (which I learned to tie in a little cheesecloth bag). The dish has been getting simpler and simpler, especially since Mrs. O declared herself vegetarian, but this year I totally dropped the ball. So here it is almost the middle of January and I do have a jar of Kreugermann’s (made in L.A. and very good), a package of fresh bratwurst from Trader Joe’s and a chunk of jowl bacon I bought in Nashville.

I don’t rinse the kraut anymore – I hate its being bland – but I drain and squeeze it dry. I start a chopped onion (and cut-up Granny Smith if using) in some lard or duck fat, and when that get soft and fragrant stir in the kraut. Keeping the heat medium-high the kraut gets turned over and stirred and turned some more until it’s hot and greasy, then the pork (seasoned if fresh, but smoked and salty is traditional) gets nestled into the middle, the juniper berry bag gets tucked in, a cup of heated dry-but-fruity white wine is poured over and the lid goes on. Then it’s either put to simmer on a flame-tamer (or just low if one is using electricity) or into a 350º oven for about an hour. Assuming I have both some sausages and room for them (oh, and fresh ones should be browned first, sorry!) I tuck those in around the edges and push them below the surface, and figure on another 40 minutes or so.

In my case, I have this dandy little-but-heavy tinned copper cocotte I bagged on a trip to Paris, sweet as heck but of maybe 2 liters capacity … so I will probably have room for MOST of the kraut and two or three of the brats, plus that bacon chunk. That’s fine – I’ll probably be the only one eating it, and I’ve had plenty of good luck already anyway!

Continuing from above, it goes downhill a bit … saw a package of big meaty pork neckbones at the grocery this morning, really cheap, so the objective switched from Alsatian to Middle American. First indication of trouble was a doozy: just started frying the onions and suddenly my nose tells me the duck fat/lard blend has gone rancid! Regroup, wipe out pan, add next-to-last of my pure (and much newer) duck fat. Cook onion, add drained kraut, cook some more while the neckbones are roasting to brown a bit. Add neckbones, decide 3/4 cup of white wine is about right – and that in the end proved too much, diluting the kraut’s flavor. After two hours at 325º (too hot!) added beer-simmered brats, then back in for an hour more at 300º (still too hot and too long). Result = edible. I’ll happily eat it, but it’s not a company dish … so when our usual Wednesday night carnivorous friend comes over I won’t mention it to her. Oh, well, it’s how we learn, isn’t it?

Yes Will it’s how we learn. I’ve forgotten a lot of my successes but I remember EVERY flop.

“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold