A Sauerbraten (German Pot Roast) dinner makes one think about a grandma toiling away in the kitchen from the early morning hours until evening. Remember those days? When cooking was done in pots and delectable delights cooked slowly for hours. If you’re going to make a Sauerbraten, then get ready for a meal that takes three days to prepare. Of course, your patience and palette will be richly rewarded by German specialty.
Sauerbraten for a 3 – 3 ½ pound rump roast.
1 Cup Red Wine Vinegar
1 Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1 Tablespoon Salt
½ Tablespoon Black Pepper
1 Tablespoon Ground Mustard
1 Tablespoon of Sugar
12 Whole Cloves
2 Bay Leaves
12 Juniper Berries*
3 – 4 ounces of crushed ginger snaps** (Final ingredient for sauce. NOT part of the marinade)
*I couldn’t get any juniper berries this time around. I’ve made Sauerbraten with and without them. Skipping the berries will not destroy the Sauerbraten and make it inedible. You’ll be fine.
**Find dark gourmet ginger snaps, those blonde ones won’t cut it.
Step 1: Dice the onions, combine all of the marinade ingredients and bring to a boil. Then remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
Step2: Get a frying pan (preferably cast iron) fired up. Rub the rump roast down with 2 Tablespoons of vegetable oil. Next, sear the roast for two to three minutes on every surface. Remember, color equals flavor.
Step 3: When the meat and the marinade have cooled, put both into a glass bowl and cover. Avoid aluminum foil or bowls. The acid in the vinegar will react with aluminum and other metals, because the combination of the two is a battery.
Marinate the Sauerbraten for three days. If the marinade covers the meat then just leave it alone. If not, then turn the roast every day or every twelve hours.
Step 4: Place the meat and marinade into a covered vessel. I use enameled cast iron by Le Creuset. It is perfect for this type of cooking. Cook at 325° for 4 hours.
Step 5: Remove Sauerbraten roast. Place it on a cooling rack. Use a wire mesh strainer and filter all of the liquid into a sauce pan. Add 3 oz. of crushed Ginger snaps. If your sauce isn’t thick enough, then continue adding ½ oz. increments.
Step 6: Eat! Mangia! I really enjoy a sweet white zinfandel to offset the sour part of Sauerbraten. However, there’s nothing wrong with a high quality “brewskie” either.
I served this Sauerbraten up with spaetzl (German pasta) boiled, then sautéed in butter and cream, Rotkohl (sweet n’ sour red cabbage), and Kartoffelklöesse (Potato Dumplings).
If you make this Sauerbraten recipe or are planning an honest attempt, I’d love to hear from you.
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