icon Choucroute Garnie à l'Alsacienne
from Bei Otto Schwarzwaldstube
in Bangkok

Sauerkraut has been widely adopted in France following the French annexation of Alsace and Lorraine, following the Peace of Westphalia in 1648. Choucroute is similar to the various sauerkraut dishes in Germany. One key difference is that, after fermentation and before cooking, choucroute is cooked in white wine.

In this recipe, found at Bei Otto Schwarzwaldstube in Bangkok, sauerkraut is combined with smoked pork shoulder, some spices and sausages of the Strasbourg, Frankfurt and Montbéliard variety. If unavailable, substitute knackwurst, bratwurst and kielbasa. There is no cast-in-stone standard. Some recipes have potatoes; we have even seen one that had apples. In Louisiana, an interesting substitution for the Montbéliard sausages could be Andouille sausage.

Final word on sauerkraut. Decent sauerkraut can certainly be bought. There are several brands (Gündelsheim, Kühne etc.) available in the United States either in a good grocery store or at Germangrocery.com. There are also several organic farms that sell excellent homemade sauerkraut online i.e. Willsvalley.com in Pennsylvania.

But - it is much more fun to make sauerkraut yourself! When working in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, we developed a hobby of making home-made sauerkraut, in order to find something else to do during those long weekends in the Intels Camp compound, besides going hashing and sitting in Bush Bar.


  • 3 lbs home-made sauerkraut
  • 1 lb smoked bacon, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 lb smoked pork shoulder
  • 6 pairs of Strasbourg sausages
  • 2/3 lb Frankturer sausages
  • 6 smoked saveloy or Montbéliard sausages
  • 1/2 liter dry Alsace white wine (i.e. Sylvaner or Pinot Blanc)
  • Salt, pepper, thyme, garlic, bay leaf, cloves, to taste
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 10 juniper berries


  1. Slice pork choulder and cut into bite-size pieces.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 deg F. Heat a heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add bacon add onions, and sauté until bacon is crisp and onions translucent, about 5-10 minutes.
  3. Add spices and bay leaves. Sauté for an additional 5 minutes.
  4. Mix in sauerkraut. Add all meats; press to submerge. Add reserved broth and wine. Boil 10 minutes.
  5. Cover, place in the oven and bake for 1 1/2 hours.
  6. Arrange sauerkraut and meats on a platter. Serve with mustards, horseradish and good crusty white bread.


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Last updated: October 12, 2010
Photograph from Wikimedia Commons used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License.