Sunday, October 09, 2011

Best Thanksgiving Side Dish Ever

I title this post thusly, but obviously these things are highly subjective and I know (although most of me doesn't want to believe it) that there is a large contigent out there who still champion that most vile of culinary abominations, the marshmallow-topped yams. If that's you, you should probably stop reading now.

Anyway. What I'm talking about is a simple dish that combines sweet, sour, salty and meaty into one delicious and nutritious package. It takes some planning, but ultimately only about 15 minutes to put together.

Sauerkraut, Bacon & Apples

1 large or 2 small cabbages
some salt
a large jar or crock

2 large apples
1 lb bacon

(it's cheap to make, too)

1) Make sauerkraut. (You'll want to start at least 8-9 days in advance. I never claimed it was an instant-gratification recipe.) For directions on this, go talk to Sandor Katz. Or, if you really can't plan more than a few hours in advance, go to the store and get a jar of Bubbie's.
2) Dice bacon and apples.
3) Throw bacon in a very large frying pan on medium heat. When the fat has started to render out, toss in the apples.
4) Cook bacon and apples together until the apples are nice and tender and the bacon is done to your liking.
5) Turn the heat down and throw in all your sauerkraut. Stir it around until it's evenly combined with the apples and bacon and warm, but not cooked - you want it still crunchy and full of probiotic goodness.
6) Serve and enjoy!

An excellent counterpoint to turkey, yams, stuffing, etc. Also, I can't recommend enough this delightful non-stuffing. WAY better than any bread-based goo. Even more way better when you get an awesome deal on chanterelles and you use those instead of the criminis. Also you can add sausage meat, which is more yum. But the basic recipe is still pretty damn good.


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