Amish Sauerkraut Soup

Dayton writes:

This recipe is one I have been making for many years.  I must confess to a great fondness for sauerkraut and am always looking for new ways to feature this fine food.  Incidentally, sauerkraut was a gift to us from the nomadic tribes that invaded Europe from Asia over a thousand years ago.  It was, and still is, a way to preserve cabbage for the long cold winters.  It has cousins in the kim chee of Korea and the preserved greens used in Chinese cooking.

The basic recipe is nothing more than a chowder.  Aromatic vegetables are sauteed in a heavy pot, usually cast iron, with Polish sausage to which flour is added and cooked, then smothered in light cream and milk.  We add fresh tarragon, in season, and, when thick and well simmered, sauerkraut and its juices as well as a splash of fresh lemon juice for added tang.  Trust me on this one… even avowed sauerkraut haters will beg for more! 

Amish Sauerkraut Soup

Drain through a fine sieve, reserving the juice:

  • 1 jar sauerkraut (we recommend Bubbies)

Gently press the sauerkraut with a spoon to release additional juices.  Measure and set aside:

  • 1-1/2 C drained sauerkraut
  • 1 C sauerkraut juice

Coarsely chop:

  • 1 12-oz pkg smoked Polish sausage links (kielbasa), casing left on

To a Dutch oven or cast iron pot, over medium high heat add:

  • 2 T butter

When the butter has melted and begins to bubble add:

  • 1 white onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 whole peeled garlic cloves, finely minced or microplaned 

When the onion begins to soften add:

  • the chopped sausage

 

Stir and sauté until beginning to brown:

 

Add:

  • 1 T fresh tarragon, minced
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Stir for a minute or two then add:

  • 2-1/2 T all-purpose flour

Stir to incorporate and cook an additional 5 minutes or so, until the flour is cooked.  Add all at once:

  • 2 C half and half
  • 2 C whole milk

 

Stir constantly, scraping up any cooked bits at the bottom of the pan, until thick, creamy and bubbling:

 

Add:

  • the reserved sauerkraut and juice

 

Stir to blend and return to a simmer so the soup will thicken.  Add, for additional tang and flavor:

  • 1 – 2 T lemon juice

Taste  for seasonings and adjust if necessary.  Ladle into warmed bowls and garnish with:

  • minced chives

Serve piping hot with copious amounts of artisanal bread.  This hearty and delicious soup will feed six hungry diners… Bon Appetit!

 

©2011 Via Aurea Designs, Inc., All Rights Reserved

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Categories: Soups

Author:Steve Meyer & Dayton Azevedo

Food and fine cooking have been our passion for many years, fueled by the year-around abundance of fresh fruits, vegetables, poultry and meats, as well as aromatic spices and herbs readily available to us here in the San Francisco Bay Area, making adventuresome, creative and delicious 5-star cooking a reality in our kitchen. Our aim is to make it yours as well by utilizing our step by step instructions and serial photographs. Bon Appetit from our kitchen to yours...!

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One Comment on “Amish Sauerkraut Soup”

  1. Beth Goodman
    February 18, 2011 at 10:54 AM #

    Oh my goodness, this soup looks and sounds absolutely fabulous… I cannot wait to try it! Thank you Dayton!

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