Sauerkraut is one of those foods you really have to taste to determine if you like it or not. My son’s first reaction when he saw me cooking Country Style Ribs and Sauerkraut was to say “I don’t like sauerkraut”. Of course, I had never fixed sauerkraut for my family so my reply to him was “Just try a little then decide if you like it or not”. A few minutes after I let him try a spoonful to taste he exclaimed “I like this!”.
I think I can safely say almost everyone knows about country style ribs (nice thick pork ribs). But, what the heck is sauerkraut? Sauerkraut is pickled (fermented) cabbage. The word sauerkraut means “sour cabbage”. For many, it is an acquired taste and you may love it or hate it after you try sauerkraut. I fall into the love it category. My mom made spare ribs and sauerkraut on many occasions and taught me her secret for taking the bitterness out of the sour cabbage. Brown sugar!
Sauerkraut actually has quite a few health benefits. There are a number of diets that feature sauerkraut as the star to help reduce weight, lower cholesterol and fight against certain forms of cancer. The biggest benefit of sauerkraut is that it is inexpensive so it is light on the pocket book.
If you have the time and the energy, you can easily make your own sauerkraut and store it in the frig or freeze it. Personally, I find it easier to buy it, freeze it and then pull it out whenever I want to make Country Style Ribs and Sauerkraut. Maybe in my next phase of life I will add making sauerkraut from scratch to my list of things to do. Until then…….
Country Style Ribs and Sauerkraut
1 pkg country style spare ribs
1 pkg sauerkraut
1 small onion sliced
1 cup water
¼ cup dark brown sugar
4 – 5 small red potatoes sliced thick
2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp black pepper
½ tsp onion powder
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Place sauerkraut in the bottom of a baking dish. Add water then season with a little salt and black pepper. Crumble brown sugar over the sauerkraut and dot with butter. Layer potatoes on one side of the baking dish.
Season country style ribs with salt, pepper and onion powder. Sprinkle with paprika. Lay ribs over sauerkraut. Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour (baste ribs and potatoes after 30 minutes) then remove foil and continue baking for an additional 45 minutes to 1 hour.