icon Utopenci

Utopenci (or Utopence) translaters literally from Czech as "floaters" (as in drowned dead bodies). Utopenci are piquantly pickled bratwursts (špekáčky) in sweet-sour vinegar stock, with ground black pepper, sliced onions and bay leaves. Great pub grub!


  • 2 lb cooked bratwurst
  • 1 1/4 quarts of water
  • 1 3/4 lb onions, sliced into half-rings
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 4 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 1/4 cups white vinegar
  • 3/4 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tbsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tbsp chili powder
  • 1-2 hot chile pepper, sliced (optional)r


  1. Mix water and vinegar, and bring to a boil. Add sugar, oil, bay leaves, chili, salt and pepper. Continue to boil for a few minutes. Turn heat off and let cool.
  2. Peel and slice onions. Cut bratwurst in half, then cut the pieces in half lengthwise.
  3. Sterilize a glass or earthware jar. The wurst will marinade for several weeks or months and it is important that the container is as sterile as an operating table.
  4. Fill jar with alternating layers of onions and wurst. Add chile peppers near the top of the jar. The final layer on top of the jar should be onions. Pour cool stock into the jar.
  5. Place in a refrigerator and marinade for a minimum of 1 week, up to several months.
  6. Serve with sliced rustic bread and a cold beer.

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Last updated: November 1, 2010