LOOKING for: Sauerbraten

linnea56March 5, 2009

I bought a bottom round of beef and while looking for a recipe to use it, saw one online for Sauerbraten. I have had this twice in German restaurants and loved it. The recipe called for marinating in the frig for 2-3 days in a marinade of red wine vinegar, red wine, onion, pepper, and bay leaves: brought to a boil first then cooled. Called for juniper berries too but I didnÂt have them.

But vinegar on beef I have never tried. WonÂt this pickle it and make it like corned beef? ItÂs been a while since I had it but I donÂt remember tasting vinegar in the sauerbraten I had. IÂm wondering if this is a legitimate sauerbraten recipe.

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That's what you do....corned beef is cured with a salt and nitrate mix.
Here's the recipe I use.
Sauerbraten ===========
This recipe is based on a Bavarian Sauerbraten from Gourmet Magazine It is excellent. Plan ahead, because the meat must marinate for at least 2 days
1 beef chuck, round or rump roast, about 2-1/4 pounds
2 Large onions, sliced
1/2 Cup coarsely chopped celery leaves
1-3/4 Cups dry red wine
1 Cup red wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon coarse salt
1/4 Teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1-1/2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 Tablespoon mustard seeds
1/8 Teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
6 cloves
1 Teaspoon black peppercorns
2 sprigs fresh parsley or 1 Tablespoon dried
2 bay leaves
1 Tablespoon bacon grease or cooking oil
1/4 Cup ground gingersnap crumbs .
Place the roast in a large sealable plastic bag. Add the onions and celery leaves, being certain to get some on both sides of the meat. In a medium bowl, mix together the wine, vinegar, salt, pepper, sugar, mustard seeds, nutmeg, cloves, peppercorns, parsley and bay leaves. Pour into the bag and seal tightly. Place the bag in a baking dish and refrigerate for 2 or 3 days, turning the bag over every 12 hours to marinate both sides. Remove the meat from the marinade, reserving the marinade. Pat the meat with a paper towel to remove excess moisture. Season with salt and pepper. Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the bacon grease and heat. Add the meat and brown on all sides. Add the reserved marinade and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the meat is very tender, about 2-1/2 to 3 hours. Remove the meat from the pot and keep warm. Skim any excess fat from the broth and strain. Whisk in the gingersnap crumbs. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring, until desired thickness. Taste for seasoning. Serve the sauce over the sliced meat and spaetzle.

Linda C

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 8:49PM
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I use Craig Claiborne's recipe with great results:
SAUERBRATEN (serves 6)
4 lb boneless chuck or rump roast
Salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
2 cups wine vinegar
2 cups water
1 garlic clove (I use more)
3/4 cup sliced onions
1 bay leaf
10 peppercorns
1/4 cup sugar
3 whole cloves
2 TBL vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups sour cream

Season the meat w/the salt & pepper & place in a large bowl. Bring the vinegar & water to a boil & add the garlic, onions, bay leaf, peppercorns, sugar & cloves. Pour the marinade over the beef, cover & refrigerate overnight.
Remove the meat & dry thoroughly with paper towels. Reserve the marinade. Dredge the meat in flour.
In a heavy kettle heat the oil, add the meat & brown on all sides. Add 2 cups of the marinade, cover tightly & simmer gently until the meat is tender, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Remove the meat to a warm platter & keep hot. Thicken the gravy with a little flour mixed w/water. Stir in the sour cream & serve over the sliced meat.~~

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 9:06PM
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Teriskitchen.com does have some good recipes, though. ;)

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 9:10PM
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Ginger, yours sounds like what my German grandmother used to do when she made it. She never used gingersnaps for her gravy but I have seen a lot of recipes on blogs and in cookbooks that do it that way. She always thickened her gravy with flour and water. That is the way I make it now too.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 9:27PM
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Here's a link to the recipe and photo from the English pages of the German Cooking Site 'Marion's Kochbuch'.

I find her recipes to be quite authentic. The German version can be seen by clicking top left of the page.


    Bookmark   March 6, 2009 at 4:59AM
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Ginger, your recipe really intrigues me because it doesn't contain wine. I don't buy wine because we don't drink it at all, so I never have any around. But wine vinegar, I've always got on hand. I have to do low sodium dishes and I think with all the vinegar and other spices, we wouldn't miss the salt. I want to give it a try.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 7:59PM
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Hope you like it, Shambo!

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 8:25PM
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Sauerbraten From "Lüchow's German Cookbook" page 106

3 pounds round steak (maybe a rump roast, or bottom of the round?)
1 tablespoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
2 onions, sliced
1 carrot, sliced
1 stalk celery, chopped
4 cloves
4 peppercorns
½ pint red wine vinegar
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons kidney fat (lard or bacon drippings could be used here)
6 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon sugar
5 gingersnaps, crushed

Wipe steak with clean cloth; season with salt and pepper. Place in earthen, glass, or enamelware bowl. Combine onions carrot, celery, cloves, peppercorns, vinegar, and bay leaves and 2½ pints water, or enough to vocer meat. Cover and put into refrigerator for 4 days.

On fifth day remove from refrigerator, drain meat, sautè in kidney fat and 1 tablespoon butter in enamelware, glass, or earthenware utensil, until seared on all sides. Add marinade liquid and bring to boil, then lower heat and simmer for 3 hours.

Melt remaining5 tablespoons butter in a pan. Stir flour smoothly into it. Add sugar, blend, and let brown to nice dark color. Add to simmering meat mixture. Cover and continue cooking until meat is tender, about 1 hour longer.

Remove meat to a warm serving platter. Stir crushed gingersnaps into the pot juices and cook until thickened. Pour this special sauerbraten gravy over meat. Serves 6 or more.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2009 at 10:27AM
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Ginger, I made your recipe the other night. It turned out really good even with no salt added. I just about doubled the spices to make up for the missing salt and used about 4 cloves of garlic. However, I think the lack of salt disrupted the balance of flavors a bit, and I needed to add about a 1/2 tsp. of sugar to the gravy; it was just a bit too tart. Once I added the sour cream, everything was perfectly yummy. I served it with baked potatoes and cabbage that I had braised separately in the sauerbraten cooking liquid.

The biggest problem I had was with the leftover meat. I couldn't get my husband to stop eating it. So I ended up with just a few scraps for me the next day.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 3:21AM
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I always used more garlic too but I have no problem with salt so have never omitted it.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 10:05AM
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