Rotkraut mit Speckapfeln (red cabbage with bacon and apple)
Sometimes I like something completely different than what I'm used to, just to shake things up. Here is a recipe from 'The Cuisines of Germany- regional specialties and traditional home cooking' by Horst Scharfenberg. This is the original, but please feel free to edit this recipe to your own liking!
- 1 2-lb head of red cabbage, washed and quartered
- 2-3 Tbp cooking fat (originally lard or Ganseschmalz, rendered goose fat)
- 1/2 c red wine or water
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- salt and ground black pepper
- 2 tsp sugar, or 3 tsp red currant jelly
- 3 Tbsp vinegar [newenglandgal recommends apple cider vinegar]
- 6 strips bacon, diced
- 1-2 medium onions, finely chopped
- 3/4 c cooked ham, finely diced
- 4 large apples (rome variety), washed and cored but leave the bottom intact to hold the filling
"[I]A peasant dish from Saxony and Thuringia, this is a great favorite of families with many children. However, it's much too delivious to be enjoyed only during periods of financial crisis. Serve with potatoes that have been boiled in walted water or mashed potatoes.[/I]" [newenglandgal says: i served with mashed parsnips and turnips, it was great!]
"[I] Shred the cabbage; drain and press dry. In a large non-reactive heavy-bottomed pot, cook the cabbage in the hot fat for a few minutes. Add the red wine or water, cloves, salt and pepper, sugar or red currant jelly, and the vinegar; mix well and simmer for a good hour over low heat.
"Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In another pan cook the bacon until the fat is rendered. Remove it from the pan and saute the onions in the same pan until golden (but not brown). Mix together the bacon, onions, and diced ham and use this mixture to stuff the apples.
"Place the stuffed apples on top of the cooked cabbage in an ovenproof baking dish and bake for about 25 minutes. You may have to add a little more liquid to keep the cabbage from drying out. The apples should be nice and tender, like ordinary baked apples."[/I]
[newenglandgirl says: for an alternative-- instead of stuffing the apples with the mixture, shred them and put all ingredients in a big pot. Cover with beef stock, cook for about half an hour. Then you have Rotkraut Bessere Deutsche Art, or Home-style Red Cabbage.]