ham steak; sauerkraut; herbed potatoes; cucumber


yeah, way Teutonic


While I have to get it out of my system ever so often (cooking a genuine German meal), this time it was partly driven by my unanticipated accumulation of ingredients which, at least considered together, seemed to suggest no other choice.  It looks like a lot of food in the image above, and it was; we had leftovers, and they were delicious at lunch the next day.

  • two half-pound ham steaks from Millport Dairy, very briefly seared in a seasoned steel pan, then buried inside a pot of sauerkraut while it was slowly finishing cooking
  • the sauerkraut began inside a large enameled, cast iron pan with a small minced onion from a friend’s garden upstate and most of one Honey Crisp apple from Troncillito Farm, chopped, sautéed in a bit of rendered lard (labelled ‘Morrell Snow Cap Manteca’, from Eataly) until golden, then one-pound of Cortland Valley sauerkraut from Whole Foods, which had been rinsed twice, was stirred in, mixed with the fat, covered and braised over very low heat for ten minutes, about a cup of good low-sodium organic beef stock stock added to the pot, 8 crushed dried juniper berries added, the cover replaced and the mix very slowly simmered for about an hour, or until the sauerkraut is soft, but not overcooked, during the last 20 minutes or so, a small raw potato shaved over the top and stirred in to thicken the liquid, and the ham steaks added shortly after that and allowed to become warm [Note:  the sauerkraut will taste even better if prepared the day before and stored in the refrigerator overnight]
  • Red Norland new potatoes from Berried Treasures boiled in salted water, drained and dried in the still-warm glass pot, rolled in a little butter, and sprinkled with summer savory from Keith’s Farm
  • two small Kirby cucumbers from Stokes Farm, sliced thinly, sprinkled in a bowl with salt and ground white pepper, covered with a mixture of half unfiltered organic white vinegar and half water, seasoned with a little Turbinado sugar, tossed with one small, thinly-sliced ‘red tropea’ Calabrian turbo shallot from Paffenroth Gardens, plus a combination of dill flowers from Ryder Farm and parsley from Keith’s Farm, both chopped, then allowed to sit for a while in the refrigerator before serving
  • the wine was a German (Mosel) white, Loosen Bros. Riesling ‘Dr. L’ 2011
  • the music included Poul Ruders, ‘Cembal d’Amour, First Book’