This month I’m writing about foods that feel like home.
I mentioned in my post on roasted chickpeas that my current food obsessions are sauerkraut & pickled jalapeño slices. There are so many foods that are improved with a big dollop of briny sauerkraut or spicy jalapeños, and I’m often carting jars of them to the table to have with dinner.
Today I’ll be featuring my favorite things to do with sauerkraut. (Outside of the best use – topping a monster seitan reuben. And okay, I’ve also been known to happily eat sauerkraut straight from the jar.)
My favorite sauerkraut is the garlic kraut from Gold Mine. Their kraut is organic and handmade in small batches. It’s kept in the refrigerated section of the grocery store, meaning that it has all of its crunch and pops with flavor. And since I’m a garlic fiend, the addition of garlic makes it that much better.
I’ve written about Gold Mine several times on my blog, just because it’s my favorite, and then last winter they sent me a message out of the blue. They’d noticed my past posts about them and asked if they could send me a little something. I was imagining a small jar of their garlic kraut, and I was very excited indeed about the possibility since it’s not available locally and requires a trek to find it.
Then this showed up in the mail!!!
It was like the best Christmas present ever, but it wasn’t Christmas. I just kept unrolling and unrolling. I could hardly believe my eyes. And they sent something for Jezebel!
(You really wouldn’t believe how much she loved this paper. Every time I eyed it to take it out to the recycling bin, she flopped down on it, claiming it.)
As luck would have it, David isn’t into sauerkraut. So it was mine, all mine!
That’s two huge jars of garlic kraut, one original sauerkraut, one kimchi (vegan, of course), kelp noodles, barley miso, nama shoyu, brown rice vinegar, tamari, and ume vinegar.
I’m still working through the ume vinegar, nama shoyu, and miso, but I polished off everything else, including the kelp noodles (above in a peanut sauce) and sauerkraut. Then they actually sent me 6 more small jars of sauerkraut and vegan kimchi back in July. I’m the happiest sauerkraut lover ever.
So anyway, here are some of the ways I’ve been using it:
The way that I eat sauerkraut the most is as a side to a big salad. It fills out the plate, adding another contrasting flavor that mixes especially well with a kale salad, avocado, and coconut bacon.
Of course, when many people think of sauerkraut, they imagine it topping a grilled veggie dog or sausage. This summer I enjoyed apple sage Field Roast sausages hot off the grill with a slice of pickle and slathering of mustard. The kraut adds a cool, tart compliment to a salty, savory sausage.
Sauerkraut makes a terrific pizza topping, especially since I prefer my pie cheeseless. It gives zing to each slice. Some people throw sauerkraut on the pizza before cooking, but I prefer to add it cold by the spoonful after the pie is cooked. It adds a cool crunchy element on top of a hot, steamy pizza. Sauerkraut goes well with lots of pizza toppings like onions, garlic, tomatoes, red bell pepper, mushrooms, potatoes, or seitan sausage.
One more thing: I had such a blast this past weekend being a guest on Sexy Vegan Radidio, a podcast with Brian Patton. The episode is live now, and you can listen to it here. On the podcast, I follow the always-inspiring Gena Hamshaw. My interview starts at around 33 minutes into the episode. We discuss highlights from last week’s Vegan MoFo and much more! Brian is hilarious and has such a genuine warmth about him. You’ll definitely want to check it out!
(I’ve heard from people who have had a hard time finding the episode from the link above. Look for Gena’s cookbook cover and the little play arrow, and then press play. Sometimes it will take a few seconds to load up. You’ll see the rotating bars underneath showing you that it’s working. Hope that helps!)
Thank you to Gold Mine for the bounty of vegan goodness & to Brian Patton for having me on his show!