Das große Fressen

A challenge, in anything we do, is directly proportionate to the level of insane intensity one self-inflicts in order to achieve something great. Cooking a feast where nearly every ingredient is made from scratch is one of my favorite, and always insanely exhausting, challenges that I self-inflict on myself. Having taken the entire week off from anything that resembled work, I decided to go full bore overboard with a menu inspired from the seasonal spirit of an Oktoberfest. With handmade fresh bratwurst from boneless pork spareribs and pork belly, then sautéed in beer; brined and beer-braised brisket for the homemade corned beef in the Reuben turnovers; 4 hour beer-braised pork shoulder for the savory strudels; and the homemade pretzels, beer on the side. Did I mention the secret ingredient yet? A challenge is most gratifying not only when you feel that sense of positive accomplishment afterwards, but also when the plates are completely empty at the end of the night and happy smiles surround the table.

SECRET INGREDIENT: Beer, of course

Alpine Martinis with Apple & Thyme

  • Thyme infused potato vodka (Lukasova with thyme bouquet 24 hours)
  • German honey liqueur (Bärenjäger)
  • Apple cider
  • Apple balls (mellow slicer)
  • Thyme sprigs

Salzbrezeln with German Mustard Trio

Butternut & Sage Puree in Pumpkin Cup

Pulled Pork & Apple Bundles

Bavarian Brie Spread with Pumpernickel & Rye Toasts

  • Brie wheel (rind removed, cube)
  • Mushroom brie (rind removed)
  • Blue cheese (1 Tbl)
  • Butter (4 tbl)
  • Cream cheese (1/4 cup)
  • Red onion
  • Smoked paprika (1 tbl)
  • Beer (1/4 cup)
  • Salt & pepper
  • (garnish with thin sliced onion and paprika)
  • Toasted pumpernickel

Herbed Polenta Sticks with Sauerrahm Sauce

  • Chicken stock (4 cups)
  • Yellow cornmeal (1 1/3 cups)
  • Butter (2 tbl)
  • Parmesan (1/2 cup)
  • Salt & fresh pepper
  • Sage
  • Rosemary
  • Flour
  • Olive oil
  • (garnish with parmesan and rosemary)
  • (Sauerrahm Sauce)

First whisk 2 cups cold stock and polenta in sauce pan. Turn heat to medium and stir constantly until simmer. Then add 2 cups boiling stock, and then bring to simmer again. Turn heat to low cook 10 minutes. Stir occasionally. Stir in butter, parmesan, sage, rosemary, and salt and pepper. Pour into baking pan lined with clingwrap. Spread evenly. 450F. Transfer polenta fries to lined baking sheet

Sauerrahm Sauce

  • Sour cream
  • Salt & fresh pepper
  • Paprika
  • Garlic powder
  • Green onion
  • Chili sauce
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Worcestershire
  • Horseradish

Feinkost Cones with Cabbage & Goat Cheese

  • German smoked pepper salami German pepper salami sausage (Karl Ehmer)
  • Red cabbage
  • Scallions
  • Goat cheese  (Crystal Brook Farm)
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Olive oil
  • Hazelnuts, chopped

Maple Weisswurst on Pretzel Sticks

  • White Weisswurst
  • Olive oil
  • Maple syrup
  • Pretzel sticks (gluten-free)

* Weisswurst – fine white German sausage made with veal and pork

Beer Bratwurst Bites with Horseradish Mustard

  • Boneless country-style pork spareribs (1 ¼ lb, cubed)
  • Pork fat (1/3 lb, cubed)
  • Fresh sage
  • Rosemary
  • Salt & pepper
  • Cayenne
  • Nutmeg
  • Coriander
  • Garlic powder
  • Honey
  • Beer (gluten-free) ¼ cup
  • Saute, then simmer in ½ cup beer
  • (Horseradish mustard sauce)

* Bratwurst – course German pork sausage

Beer-Braised Pork Shoulder Strudel Cups

  • Pork shoulder
  • Salt & fresh pepper
  • Nutmeg
  • Garlic, Onion, Carrots, Parsnip (chopped)
  • Apples
  • Thyme sprig
  • Cinnamon stick
  • Beer (gluten-free)
  • Butternut & Goat cheese Puree
  • Gruyere cheese
  • Reduced braising sauce
  • Phyllo

* remove pork after braising, reduce by half, and then puree in pot with hand blender

Reuben Bierocks

  • Homemade Corned Beef
  • Red Pastrami
  • Dill mustard
  • Sauerkraut
  • Jarlsberg Cheese
  • (Pastry dough)

Pastry Dough

  • 1 ½ cups pastry flour
  • 1 ½  tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp Salt
  • ¾  cup ricotta
  • 4 Tbl butter
  • Caraway seeds

German Chocolate Cupcakes

Black Forest Bars

-- Weather When Posted --

  • Temperature: 81°F;
  • Humidity: 58%;
  • Heat Index: 83°F;
  • Wind Chill: 81°F;
  • Pressure: 29.99 in.;

Leave a Reply