Start Your Day Right- Sauerkraut Breakfast Casserole

Out of all the different meal-time foods, breakfast is probably the most appealing to me; part of that may be due to how much I love eggs.  They’re incredibly versatile, and they go well with so many other foods- especially sauerkraut!  If you’ve never had sauerkraut with eggs before, they are delicious together, and a great way to start the morning.  This gave me the idea to make a savory breakfast casserole, with sauerkraut in it- and wow it was good!  If you love breakfast casseroles, this may become your new favorite!  It’s so easy to throw together and very flavorful.  If you’re like me and think breakfast-food is anytime-time-of-the-day-food, it’s also perfect for brunch, lunch, even dinner!

Sauerkraut Breakfast Casserole

1 cup drained Bubbies Sauerkraut

3 pieces of cooked bacon, chopped

1 cup of shredded cheese, plus extra for the top

1/2 cup green onions, chopped

1/4 cup milk or cream

Pepper to taste

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Drain sauerkraut well; cook bacon completely and pat well with a paper towel to remove excess grease. In a bowl, whisk together 6 eggs and the milk. Add sauerkraut, pepper bacon, cheese and onions, and mix together. Pour into a well-greased casserole dish, and bake for 25-30 minutes, til the cheese is golden brown. Remove from the oven and let it cool for 15 minutes.  Enjoy!

Bread & Butter Pickle Meatloaf

Meatloaf is one of those foods, much like Brussel sprouts, that always seems to get a bad rap.  Perhaps because it makes many think of the dry, tasteless meatloaf served in many school cafeterias, a nondiscriminant chunk of unappetizing meat that was worthy of disdain.  This recipe, however, is very juicy, flavorful, and packed with so many ingredients, it should really be called an omnivore loaf! Our bread and butter pickles combined with other veggies to make this an extremely flavorful meatloaf that is sure to change the minds of any meatloaf haters out there. It’s also very easy to throw together quickly, making it a great meal for any day of the week!

Bread & Butter Pickle Meatloaf

1 lb ground beef

1 egg

⅓ cup crackers

½ cup or 1 deveined kale leaf, chopped

¼ cup celery, chopped

½ cup bread and butter pickles, chopped

⅓ cup baby carrots, chopped

½ medium red onion, chopped

½ cup BBQ sauce

½ cup shredded cheese

¼ cup molasses

*salt and pepper, to taste if desired

Optional glaze: Mix 1/2 cup BBQ sauce with 1/4 cup molasses

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Chop all vegetables. Combine meat, egg, crackers, chopped veggies, cheese, ½ cup BBQ sauce and molasses and mix together well until all ingredients are spread consistently throughout. You can use a food processor, or your hands if you don’t mind getting dirty. If you’re using a very lean beef, such as 90% or up, lightly grease a loaf pan before forming the meat into it. If you’re using a ground beef with a higher fat content, you can put the meat in the pan directly, without greasing it; the fat will lubricate it as it bakes and keep it from sticking.

Optional- if you desire a glaze on the top, bake for 45 minutes and then drizzle ½ cup BBQ sauce mixed with ¼ cup molasses over top of the meatloaf; return to oven for an additional 10 minutes.  Turn off the heat, and let the meatloaf sit in the oven for an additional 5 minutes.  This will give it a delicious, sticky, caramelized sauce on the top as seen in the video.  If you’d like to forgo the glaze, bake for 55 minutes, then remove from oven and let cool for at least 15-20 minutes prior to serving. Garnish with extra bread and butter pickles if desired.  Enjoy!       

Cocktails to Ring in the New Year!

2016 is almost at an end- how did that happen?! If you’re planning on having a celebration on New Year’s Eve, then cocktails can definitely add to the festivities- in more ways than one. Everyone has heard of the pickleback, but we’ve searched long and hard to find a handful of recipes that pickle, kraut, and horseradish lovers may not have ever heard of, let alone tried. While most of them are savory, we’ve also included a couple of sweet ones in the mix to satisfy the sweet-tooths among you as well. Wishing you all a happy, healthy New Year! Cheers!

Sauerkraut shandy from mixologist Chris Kyles of STK Chicago

Created by mixologist Chris Kyles as a cocktail creation challenge, this drink is an interesting mix of flavors and beverages to create a beautiful, complex amber shandy.

The Vladmiry from Liqour.com

The Vladmiry combines carrot juice, horseradish, and spices to create a salty, savory drink that is reminiscent of a traditional Bloody Mary.

Canoe’s Dill Pickle Cocktail from wdish.com

A sweet and sour cocktail combining dill pickle puree, gin, Grand Marnier, and fruit juices.

The Pickled Surfer from Good Food Stories

For those who prefer sweet cocktails, the Pickled Surfer is a delicious blend of whiskey, bread and butter pickle juice, and a hint of lime.

Sauerkraut Martini from theKitchn.com

A simple, brine-y drink that is sure to be a hit with any sauerkraut fans!

Spicy BLT Bacon  Bloody Marys from HeatherChristo.com/

Bacon and Bloody Mary fans unite! While not an evening cocktail, this drink is perfect for a little hair-of the-dog for New Year’s Day breakfast or brunch.

 

 

 

Sauerkraut Gingerbread makes the holidays more festive!

Winter is one of my favorite times to bake and cook because there’s always something so comforting about a warm, cozy kitchen with delicious smells when it’s chilly outside. I was thinking back recently about being a kid at Christmas time, and how it’s very different as an adult when I started thinking about my great-grandma’s gingerbread. Every Christmas, my dad would always make her gingerbread recipe, and in many ways, it’s a huge part of my childhood Christmas memories.  I realized that I haven’t had it since I was living at home, so I decided it was definitely time to make a loaf, but of course I had to make an addition; sauerkraut!  Sauerkraut is a common ingredient in traditional German baked goods, so it just seemed the perfect addition to the recipe. I’m sure great-grandma would approve, and you will too!

Sauerkraut Gingerbread

3 1/2 cups sifted cake flour*

¾ cup drained and chopped sauerkraut

¾ melted or softened butter

1 cup buttermilk

2 eggs

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup dark molasses

2tsp baking soda

1tsp cinnamon

3tsp ground ginger

½ tsp cloves

Start draining your sauerkraut.  Combine eggs, butter, and sugar and blend well.  Add buttermilk, molasses, sauerkraut, spices and baking powder, mix well.  Add a little bit of the flour at a time, making sure to blend well; the mixture will get increasingly thick, so it’s easiest to add it slowly to make sure that you don’t end up with any unmixed flour pockets.  When thoroughly mixed, pour into a well-greased loaf pan and bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes.  Let the bread cool on a rack for about an hour prior to serving.

*Note: if you’re like me, you may not always have cake flour on hand.  You can substitute regular flour for cake flour with the addition of cornstarch to your flour.  For one level cup of regular flour, remove 2 Tbsp of the flour and replace it with 2 Tbsps of cornstarch.  Then sift it together!  It works well in a pinch.

Happy holidays to you all and a very happy, healthy New Year!