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I’m currently exploring different ways to eat sauerkraut (that don’t involve eating hot dogs) and finding combinations that actually work.
I’ve been wandering around the big ‘ol internet, trying to get a feel for the kinds of flavours that pair well with sauerkraut.
Apart from hot dogs, that is. Or a roast. Or more hot dogs.
So here’s the combinations that I’ve tried so far that seem pretty tasty!
1. Brown Rice with Sauerkraut and Apple
A big bowl of cooked brown rice, with a generous tablespoon or two of sauerkraut, plus a grated apple.
Seems like an odd combination? I was doing some research online and one of the things that kept coming up was apple.
People kept pairing sauerkraut with apple – applesauce, roasted apples, apples, apples and more apples.
OK, maybe not quite that many apples, but then I thought about the sauerkraut chicory salad I made recently, and how the sweetness of the red capsicum, balanced out the tang of the sauerkraut really well.
And the other thing I kept seeing paired with sauerkraut (other than more hot dogs!) was starchy foods – bread, dumplings, mashed potato – so I wondered how I could pull these ideas together to create a delicious way to eat more sauerkraut.
In case you were wondering, sauerkraut is basically fermented vegetables. And I’m discovering that eating fermented foods can be a great way to add more variety to a raw vegan diet, along with some great health benefits.
Although not all raw vegans are in favour of fermented foods, others say that they add healthy bacteria to your digestive system. Fermented foods can also be easier to digest for some people because the food is already starting to be broken down by the fermentation process.
And you’ll get the maximum benefits if your sauerkraut (or other fermented food) is raw. In other words, it hasn’t been pasteurised (or heated) to “kill the germs”.
Well, I haven’t made my mind up either way with regards to fermented foods, so I’m currently experimenting with them, because that’s what I love to do. Experiment.
And so this dish was born. I call it “Brown Rice with Sauerkraut and Apple”.
Delicious, healthy and filling.
2. Chicory Sauerkraut Salad
I picked up the most amazing bunch of fresh chicory from my local organic greengrocer the other day.
And I also bought a jar of sea vegetable sauerkraut at the same time, so I thought I’d combine them to make a salad for lunch.
I’ve made my own sauerkraut before, and it turned out OK, but I’ve discovered that it can really help if I try other people’s versions of new foods before I make my own, for two reasons:
- I can learn which variations of something are my favourite
- I can discover the best ways to eat it, or if I even want to eat it at all
Sometimes it’s nice to be able to experiment with new foods without all the effort of making it yourself.
And then once I’ve decided it’s something I do want to keep eating, I’m happy to go to the trouble of making it for myself, because I know what particular style of it I will enjoy and that I will actually eat all my hard work.
I also tossed in some kelp noodles and a handful of diced red capsicum (sweet bell pepper), and dressed it very lightly with a splash of fresh lemon juice.
The result was a very light, flavoursome salad that sat very easily in my stomach, which was great because my stomach was feeling a bit queasy at the time.
Not my usual style of salad, but it kind of worked.
The flavour was tangy and bitter, with a hint of sweet from the red capsicum. And the lemon juice pulled it all together nicely.
I think next time I’d add more red capsicum, or maybe some grated apple, just to add more sweetness to balance out the tangy and bitter elements, but I was surprised at how well it worked.
And I was eating fresh chicory. By the bowlful!
Other (vegan) ways to eat sauerkraut
I’ll keep experimenting and let you know what other great combinations I find.
What’s your favourite way to eat sauerkraut?
Let me know in the comments below.
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