My husband had a business dinner tonight and our resident vegetarian (daughter #2, Brittany) is at work, so I made the rest of us a meal with a German accent.
In a large skillet, I combined a little Olive Oil and butter (no imitations allowed or encouraged). Then I threw in some fresh coarsely chopped garlic. After a minute, I added my chopped up Hillshire Farms Smoked Sausage. There are tons of varieties, but my favorite of the moment is the Smoked Sausage. When a lot of people get to this stage, they make a grave error – they don’t cook the sausage nearly long enough. If it’s still piggy pink, keep it in the pan!
I added salt and pepper and cooked until the sausage was the beautiful golden color I was after.
I opened my large can of Kroger Sauerkraut (As you know I’m a brand snob, like, 98 percent of the time – but Kroger brands are almost always first rate and their Sauerkraut is honestly my favorite of all the brands. It’s slightly sweet and that amuses me.). After draining about half the liquid off of the kraut, I added it along with a heaping tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar to the sausage and it’s drippings.
It simmered. I stirred. My cat watched.
This is a fast, inexpensive, easy, and delicious meal. It’s great served alongside applesauce and corn muffins or even toasted bread and sweet potatoes.
This particular recipe is a perfect example of one of my favorite, most consistent cooking tips: When cooking, never just throw ingredients together and expect magic to happen. Give each ingredient and each step in the cooking process your complete attention… and flavor! When I’m making spaghetti, for example, I season the pasta as though it will be a dish all on its own. By the time it’s hit with the right amount of olive oil, rosemary, basil, and salt, it could be. In fact, my daughters will often simply put a little butter on the noodles and let the spaghetti sauce wait in the bowl for a while.
The end results in any meal will be a lot more satisfying if you treat each ingredient as though it will be flying solo. That’s why I always season the sausage before adding the kraut in this particular dish. When a cook simply opens packages and throws them all together, it’s obvious in each bite. But when each ingredient has the self confidence it needs… magic!