Kapuśniak (Sauerkraut Soup)

Sauerkraut is an important ingredient, or even a base, of many polish dishes. Sauerkraut soup, sour but sweet and spicy at the same time, can be a nice and warming dish in winter, or a light soup in summer. Depending on the amount of meat used for the soup, it could be a light starter or a rich main meal. It’s definitely at the top of the favorite dishes list at my home… Plus, the soup is very healthy and contains lots of vitamin C!

Prep time: 30 min, easy
Cook time: 70 min
Serves: 4

1-1,5 kg Sauerkraut, you can get in bags or in jars from Polish shops
2-2,5l Water or chicken or vegetable stock
500 g or more smoked pork ribs (alternatively fresh ribs, smoked bacon or chicken)
2 carrots
1 Parsnip
1 Onion
Half of celeriac
2 Bay leaves
3 grains of allspice
Salt, black pepper, cumin and marjoram
3-4 medium size potatoes

1.     In a stockpot boil water and cook meat to make a stock. If you cook fresh meet, skim the scummy foam. Add some bay leaves, old spice and salt.

2.     After 20 minuets of cooking meat, add all the vegetables, in whole pieces. Cook them on low heat as long as they become soft.
3.     When the vegetables are soft, take them and the meat out, or strain the soup. Peel potatoes and chop them into small pieces then, cook them in the stock, for about 10-15 minutes.
4.     Chop sauerkraut finely and put into the stock. Cook for about 10-15 minutes.
5.     Add spices, salt and black pepper for flavor.
6.     Slice cooked vegetables and the meat, and put them back into the stockpot. Cook for a short time and leave it for a while to rest.

7.     Kapuśniak can be served with bread, you can add little sauer cream or cream. Put more meat if you want to make the soup richer, or use the cooked meat for a separate dish if you want the soup to be lighter. Decorate with fresh a parsley or dill leaf. Enjoy!

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