Winter is here and it’s cold, really cold. So, let’s eat something appropriate for the season such as an appetizing baked sauerkraut with brown rice.
Sauerkraut is a very popular food in some European countries including Germany, Poland, and my home country Bulgaria. For Bulgarians it is a must on the table during the cold winter season. It is one of the vegetarian dishes that we serve on the Christmas Eve dinner table. Sprinkled with some red pepper spice it makes a delicious sauerkraut salad but what I am going to introduce you to in this blog is a recipe for a main meal made with sauerkraut.
Before I continue with the recipe itself, I would like to provide you with more information about the benefits of sauerkraut and tell you a little more about how you can make it at home.
Why is Sauerkraut good? The sauerkraut is low in Saturated Fat, and very low in Cholesterol. It is also a good source of Calcium and Magnesium, Dietary Fiber, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Vitamin B6, Folate, Iron, Potassium, Copper and Manganese. Read more In addition, sauerkraut has that good bacteria and yeasts that are naturally present on cabbage leaves which makes it a great food solution for weight loss (I love sauerkraut and once I ate it for a week and lost 5 pounds without even realizing that sauerkraut had these qualities). To mention the negative side of sauerkraut is the salt that is involved in preparing sauerkraut from fresh cabbage. However, without salt, there is not sauerkraut because salt is the ingredient that actually starts the fermentation process. Knowing this fact, always check the ingredients on the back of the sauerkraut jars you buy to make sure that there are no chemicals and preservatives added.
Now, the necessary ingredients:
- Sauerkraut in a jar (look at the ingredients and make sure that there is no sugar). For this recipe I purchased a Polish brand sauerkraut jar on which the labeled ingredients were cabbage, carrots and salt. However, if you find sauerkraut with white wine, it might be worth trying it out because I have seen recipes that use white wine in the preparation process.
- 1 tea cup long grain brown rice
- 1/2 teacup with crushed tomatoes (no salt added)
- One roasted red pepper cut into small pieces
- One medium size red onion (chopped)
- One carrot (shredded)
- Spices (1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, 1 teaspoon red pepper, dried mint, and 2 tablespoons of savory, 2 bay leaves)
- 1.5 tea cups of water
- Olive oil
How to prepare:
Add olive oil in the pan and after it warms up, add the onion that is pre-chopped and the shredded carrot. Once they soften you add the washed and drained rice. Cook together for a few minutes and stir often so that the rice won’t stick on the bottom of the pan. Then add 1.5 cup of water and the 1/2 tea cup with crushed tomatoes. Add the salt and the pepper and let it cook for about 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, add the entire sauerkraut from the jar and the rest of the spices. Cook for about 30 more minutes on a medium heat or until the rice is soft.
The dish is than ready to serve. Some people love it garnished with a spoon of yogurt and other just the way it is.
This dish was also a part of my Christmas Eve Dinner.
Enjoy it this winter season!
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