Not everyone’s favourite Nom, but there are many recipes which would probably transform you into a cabbage lover!
Sauerkraut is basically pickled green cabbage. Extremely popular and traditional meal in Central and Eastern Europe.
Pickled cabbage first appeared in China 2000 years ago and it arrived in Europe some 1000 years ago when Tatars spread to West during Genghis Khan invasion. Tatars brought traditions from the far East, such as pickled cabbage and other pickled vegetables. When they reached as far as today’s Eastern and Central Europe, sauerkraut took roots in Balkan countries, other Eastern European countries, Germany and some parts of France.
Raw sauerkraut is packed with vitamin C, and nutrients like lactobacilli. It also contains various cancer-fighting compounds such as isothiocyanate and sulphoraphane.
You can pickle cabbage yourself or you can buy ready made. Pickled cabbage comes in thinly cut form or you can purchase whole pickled leaves. The latter is used for creating small parcels filled with various meat and/or rice.
Sauerkraut is mainly prepared either as a side dish, salad or mixed with pork. Every country or even every family has their own traditional way how to make it, but at the end the recipe base is always the same.
The most popular dish is German sauerkraut with special German sausages or sauerkraut with pork belly and various pork cuts , extremely popular across Eastern Europe.
As i mentioned before, pickled cabbage leaves are used to wrap various fillings made with meat and rice. These are called Sarma ( from Turkish: a “wrapped thing” ). Sarma with pickled cabbage leaves is extremely popular in South-East Europe, whereas recipes with fresh cabbage leaves, vine leaves or chard/kale leaves are popular in other Eastern European countries. Some popular dishes with fresh cabbage leaves are Polish Golabki.
Here are some ideas to get you started
Tasty Sarma recipes with pickled and fresh cabbage leaves:
German style sauerkraut with pork and sausages:
Cabbage as a side dish: