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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Sauebrauten A Classic Recipe-Perfect and Easy for October

I have a big weakness for Holliday themed and seasonal recipes.  I love making pumpkin for Halloween, turkey for thanksgiving, latkes for Channukah , roast for Christmas, corned beef for St. Patrick's day and so on.  There are just certain foods I have to have at certain times of the year.   October is no different,  in October I'm thinking pumpkins of course,

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but also Oktoberfest.

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I already have the perfect pumpkin recipe, Dorie Greenspan's pumpkin stuffed with everything good, but I was lacking an Oktoberfest appropriate recipe.   Of course it had to be German and preferably old fashioned.  I settled on Sauerbrauten, German Pot Roast, because there is nothing more reminiscent of a mid century family meal then a big delicious pot roast:

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During the coarse of my searching for an appropriate recipe I discovered that German's would never actually eat Sauerbrauten during Oktoberfest it being more of a sausage time.  However, I decided not to be dissuaded and to forge ahead with my own traditions.

October the perfect time for Sauerbrauten, image source
I choose Alton Brown's recipe as featured on kitchn.  Now Sauerbrauten takes some time to make, three days in all, but in all that time you barely have to do more then stir, this is a seriously easy recipe. 

2 cups water
1 cup cider vinegar
1 cup red wine vinegar
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped, or 2 to 3 small
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt, additional for seasoning meat
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 bay leaves
6 whole cloves
12 juniper berries
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 (3 1/2 to 4-pound) bottom round
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/3 cup sugar
18 dark old-fashioned gingersnaps crumbled
a few handfuls golden raisins

You start by making a vinegar marinade.  To do this you combining the water, vinegars, onion, carrot, salt, pepper, and spices in a large pot which you bring to a boil and then simmer for ten minutes.  Set aside the marinade to cool while you season your meat with salt and pepper and brown I on all sides in a skillet coat with the vegetable oil.  It should take about five minutes per side.  Next add the meat to the vinegar marinade.  Cover the pot and store it in the refrigerator for three days.  During this time you will turn the roast once a day.

On the third day remove the pot from the fridge

 and preheat the oven to 325 Sprinkle the sugar over the meat and roast the meat in the pot for 4 hours until very tender.  Remove from the oven and transfer the meat to a platter.  Strain the vegetables and spices from the sauce in the pot and bring it to a simmer on the stove top.  Mix in the crumbled ginger snaps and stir well.  Just before serving stir in the raisins and pour the sauce over the meat.  Delicious!  This recipe is definitely going into my seasonal rotation, and I'm also sure I'll be making it after October is a distant memory.

Serve with ricotta spaetzle,  make sure to double the recipe,  German red cabbage, and of course plenty of Oktoberfest beer!

Note: Not pictured in the above photo is the dogs who where going crazy begging for a taste!



  1. My father's heritage is German. His mother was a child when her family immigrated to the US. My favorite German dish is the potato salad, and I love the red cabbage too. however that sauerbraten looks amazing. I don't eat meat any more but I admire the effort you put into that incredible meal. (Sadly there is no substitute for the bacon in German potato salad. But no worries, there are lots of other good things to eat :)

  2. Yum! love red cabbage. Sounds wonderful, I think juniper berries might be the most difficult thing here.

  3. This sounds wonderful!
    Mr Bailey & Hazel

  4. Sounds great for the cooler weather. But translation of recipes from US to UK terminology can be a challenge. I assumed a 'bottom round' is a cut of meat, but have no idea which (or is the cue in the bottom?!)
    Cheers, Gail.

    1. PS I am reluctant to google 'bottom round' for fear of what might turn up...

  5. Sounds delicious and looks it too. Have a wonderful Wednesday.
    Best wishes Molly

  6. I totally forgot about Oktoberfest. There is a small town near us where they hold Oktoberfest every year. Haven't been there for a long time.
    Your dish looks super delicious. Must be really good with beer on the side :-)

  7. ohhh I love Sauebrauten! My grandmother makes a wonderful version (that sadly I have not tasted in years) and now I'm eager to have some. Might have to give your recipe a go. Over a Oktoberfest season my mother tends to make a lot of homemade red cabbage, the sausage your mentioned and yummy spaetzle. Now i'm hungry and it's only 8:38 am :)


    Liz :)

  8. Mmmmm. Sauerbrauten! My family is from Germany way back so my mom used to make that and I loved it. When I went to Germany and ordered it, it was nothing like what my mom had always served. Turned out she'd been making cheater, quicky sauerbrauten! But I can't help it... I still love my mom's recipe best! Now I'm hungry and need to dig out her recipe to make before October runs out!

  9. It sounds yummy!! So you set the stuff in the mix, let it sit and then cook everything together? How much easier could it be!!


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