Tim and Bronwyn Wiechmann, the husband and wife team behind popular Boston spots T.W. Food and Bronwyn, have a deep love for Eastern European cuisine. With their new restaurant, Playska, opening in Cambridge, Mass. later this fall, they’ll continue blending influences from all over the region to offer up a new kind of fast-casual menu, making twists on old world classics for lines of hungry Bostonians. And while the Balkan influence is noticeable on their menus, the Weichmanns also look to the west of the European continent for influence, especially during Oktoberfest.
Perfect if you’ve had your fill of the more basic sausages with your beer during the start of fall and want something different, the Krauter Wurst with riesling sauerkraut has all the snap you could want, but the herbal aftertaste is something you just don’t get with other cased meats. Between the herbs and the noticeable taste of the riesling in the kraut, this is next-level Oktoberfest experience that pairs perfectly with a Paulaner or Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest.
Chef Tim Wiechmann of Brownyn‘s “Krauter Wurst” (Herb Sausage) with Riesling Sauerkraut
Serves 8 – 12
- 2 lbs pork shoulder, ground fine
- 1 lb chicken breast, ground fine
- 2lbs raw pork belly, ground fine
- 1 medium onion, through meat grinder or chopped fine
- 2 Tbsp salt
- 1 cup water
- 1 Tbsp pink peppercorn, ground
- 1 lemon zest
- 1 cup chopped herbs (parsley, cilantro, sage, rosemary, dill) taking care not to turn them black.
- Standard size hog casings
- 2 quarts raw, fermented sauerkraut
- 6 juniper berries
- 1 bottle Riesling
- 4 Tbsp honey
- 4 Tbsp cider vinegar
- 2 apples, cut into large chunks
- Salt to taste
- Start the kraut by combining all of the ingredients in a tall pot. Cover with a circle of parchment paper and set on medium. Allow to boil, then lower the heat a bit. Let this cook a minimum of one hour, stirring to make sure it does not stick on the bottom. If you need to add a little water, that’s ok. The sauerkraut is ready when all of the wine has evaporated and it turns a translucent grey color. Cool in the fridge.
- Start the sausage combining all of the meat and the onion in a large bowl or bucket. Combine water, pepper, lemon zest, salt and pour over the meat. Mix well with your hands for at least 5 minutes (this can also be done with a paddle in a KitchenAid) until the meat is sticky and difficult to remove from fingers. Sprinkle all the herbs and mix again quickly (the meat is acidic and will turn them brown).
- Prepare the casings by rinsing them on the faucet. Stuff the sausage using a pastry bag or sausage stuffer and twist 8″ links, tied off with twine. Poach in a large shallow pot, not a boil, around 180F. The internal temperature of the sausage should hit 160F. Shock in ice and cool.
- Reheat the sausage on a grill or in a pan and serve with sauerkraut and mustard—and beer, of course.