Comforting and fortifying, this is a weekend dish for the late fall or winter. Inspired by the original, traditional dish from Alsace, France, our version has a bit more tang and is wonderfully satisfying. This is an easy and fast meal to prepare but does take a little over 3 hours of passive oven time in addition to the brief prep time.
American Vinegar Works
1 head of green cabbage
2 sweet onions
~ 1 quart of sauerkraut
1 lb pork butt or pork shoulder
1 lb smoked or mixed German sausages (kielbasa works well if you cannot find frankfurters, bratwurst or weisswurst)
3 bay leaves
1 tablespoon of caraway seeds
½ tablespoon of fennel
1 bottle (250ml) of Maple Cider Vinegar (19.53 as alternative)
1 quart chicken stock
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Core, half, and then cut cabbage into thin ribbons. Spread cabbage in a large oven roasting pan. Drain and squeeze sauerkraut to remove excess liquid. Spread sauerkraut over the cabbage. Quarter the sweet onions and spread the quarters over the cabbage mix. Space out and nestle the bay leaf into the cabbage. Sprinkle carraway and fennel seeds over the cabbage. Cut the pork butt into four pieces. Cut the sausages in half. Place the meat over the cabbage bed and between the onions. Salt and generously pepper the pork butt and cabbage. Pour in the chicken stock and Maple Cider Vinegar.
Tightly foil the roasting pan and place it in the oven. Cook for 2 hours or until the pork butt is fork tender. Remove the foil, turn the oven up to 450 degrees, and cook for an additional 30 minutes allowing the dish to color a bit and some of the excess liquid to evaporate.
Serve hot with mustard (it is fun to give folks several varieties to choose from) and crusty, warm bread. Accompany it with a nice Resiling, Vouvray, or a well-made and not too sweet hard apple cider.