December 04, 2010
International Bento (Germany/Ukraine): Sausage & Sauerkraut
Internationally speaking, this bento is a little German, a little Ukrainian/Russian, a little Polish... and generally north eastern European.
This bento was the result of leftovers, as is my usual modus operandi, The sausages and sauerkraut were cooked together in Riesling wine, using the recipe from Nigella Express, the perogies are potato, from Alenka on Kingsway in Vancouver, with caramelized red onions sprinkled over them.
I do note that the amount of sauerkraut that the recipe makes far exceeded our needs, so be advised to cut it in half if you don't want leftover kraut. Also, the amount of wine does not sufficiently cook away in the cooking time, so I have reduced it from 750 ml to 500 ml. The good news is, you get to drink the remaining 250 ml with dinner!
Sausages with Sauerkraut
Adapted from Nigella Express
Serves 6 - 8
950 grams jarred sauerkraut, rinsed and drained
2 teaspoons juniper berries or sprigs of fresh rosemary
3 dried bay leaves
8 smoked sausages, cut into shorter lengths
2 cups/500 ml dry Riesling wine
1 teaspoon white peppercorns
Spread the drained sauerkraut in the bottom of a small roasting pan. Sprinkle with juniper berries, bay leaves, and white peppercorns. Add the sausage pieces in a single layer, and carefully pour in the wine. Bring the mixture to a boil on the stovetop, then cover with foil and place in a 400℉ oven, and bake for 30 minutes (check the liquid level after 20 minutes, as your mileage may vary). Serve with mustard.
If you do not have juniper berries, sprigs of fresh rosemary give a similar effect of a woodsy floral note. It's not the same, of course, but it is a lovely alternative if juniper berries aren't something you can easily get.