Tomorrow is a family reunion – a promised feast of garlic sausage, veggie plates, perogies, buns, butter, squares, and of course, wait for it….
(enter The Shmenges…)
2 – 3 – 4! Cabbage rolls and coffee! MMM MMM good!
Seriously. We will be having cabbage rolls and coffee.
Tonight, to get my Ukrainian stomach prepped for this feast, decided to open a precious jar of homemade sauerkraut given to me by a coworker. Susan’s family still makes sauerkraut at home. The jar I was given was carefully made by hand and I was waiting for a night to open it when it would be the star of the meal.
Earlier today we went to Old Country Meat and Deli (106th Street and 63 Ave) to pick up some sausage to accompany the sauerkraut. Going to Old Country Meat and Deli is like going to Home Sense. I go to Home Sense to pick up some dish towels, and I leave with three area rugs, a clock, and new bamboo cutting board. Same thing with Old Country Meat and Deli. Go in for garlic sausage, and come home with fresh sausages of all types, and frozen ones too, just because, one never knows when they will need a nice Cumberland sausage.
So, how to showcase sauerkraut? Keep it simple. Sauteed some onion, added a ring of sliced ham and garlic sausage (amazing any hit the pan, as the rhythm was slice one, eat one, slice two, eat one, etc. etc.). Finally, I added the mason jar of homemade sauerkraut.
CAUTION: It’s okay to pick at the sausage and sauerkraut while it’s still cold. But once hot, you WILL BURN YOURSELF. People, it’s amazing I’m able to type for the burns I gave myself picking at my pan of deliciousness. But I’m doing this for you. Aren’t I brave?
Sauerkraut is something my family made for decades, and I took for granted for all those years. Now that we don’t make it anymore, I crave the stuff. Sure it can be bought in the store, but it’s just not the same. Memories make things delicious, and I remember the large glazed clay pots in my grandfather’s garage, the cabbage slicer, the wood disk that fit perfectly in the pots, and a heavy round stone that sat on top. I remember the smell of the garage during this time. Motor oil, old tires, old newspapers, boxes of apples from the trees in the yard, and the tang of the cabbage fermenting away. Heaven.