January 01, 2010

Coming for Dinner? Noseplugs Available at the Door!

New Year's Day. The slate has been cleaned; we get a fresh start. But we like to hedge our bets for the new year, so we eat traditional foods that are supposed to increase our many blessings in the family.

In the Cleaver compound, we are having a pork roast with sauerkraut (since I am of German descent; The Mister had no traditional food to eat on this special day, poor man). Now that we're married, he gets to live in a house that reeks of sauerkraut for at at least the first three days of the year!

Why pork and sauerkraut? The pork symbolizes progress - apparently, a pig only walks forward, and never goes backward. The sauerkraut, actually the cabbage from which it is made, is green, and the leaves look like folded money. It signifies economic fortune (and all of us could use some of that this year).

My dad used to roast the pork in the oven and add the sauerkraut after the pork was about half done. The Mister, however, does not care
for the bitter taste of the sauerkraut, so I had to come up with a new recipe to make it more tasty for him.

Here's what I found on Recipezaar.com, one of my go-to sites for recipes.

Crock Pot Country Ribs with Apples and Sauerkraut

3 lbs. pork ribs, country style, trimmed of any excess fat (I still use a pork roast if I have one handy)
1 16 oz. can of sauerkraut, undrained. HOLD THE PHONES! Canned sauerkraut tastes like the can. I use one bag of sauerkraut, usually found near the pork roast in the supermarket. It tastes so much better.

1 medium onion, thinly sliced into rings
1 8 oz can of sliced mushroom stems and pieces, drained
1 large, or 2 medium apples, cored and cut into wedges
1/4 C brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon celery seed

The apples and brown sugar help to sweeten the kraut, if you're into that. I skip the celery seed - The Mister has a pathological aversion to all things celery.

  1. Brown the ribs in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Season pork with salt and pepper.
  3. Put browned pork into crock pot.
  4. Layer sauerkraut, onions, mushrooms, apple wedges and brown sugar over the ribs.
  5. Sprinkle with celery seed.
  6. Cover and cook on low 7 to 9 hours or on high for 3 to 4 hours until meat is tender. If using a pork roast, I'd cook it on high for at least six hours.
This is a tasty dish, but be warned - it does tend to stink up the house. At a previous job, I volunteered to work during the holidays (so folks with families could stay at home) - and I made this at work. Twenty years later, my friend Michelle still reminds me of the stench it left behind that New Year's Day!

This is a good meal when served with mashed potatoes. When I used to babysit, my dad would show up at midnight and hand me my plate of pork, sauerkraut and mashed.

Happy New Year! I'm so glad THIS isn't a traditi
onal New Year food in our home. Forget just New Year's Day, it's yucky every day! It just sounds nasty!


  1. We eat black eyed peas on new years day for good luck - I think i'll pass on the spotted dick too...

  2. We don't have a New Year's meal, though I doubt I could get my family to eat sauergraut(sp). I was suppose to make a turkey dinner because we ate Christmas dinner at the in-laws but I forgot to take the turkey out of the freezer, pizza?

  3. I'm Polish and my Husband is German, so we should eat this on New Years, however I not only don't like kraut, I am pregnant and the smell makes me gag!

    Hopefully the brats will bring us luck and prosperity in the new year!

    Happy New Year! May it be filled with Peace, love and prosperity!

  4. We are so eating pork today...I had no idea! :)

  5. Ha! Spotted Dick in a can?? Thats hilarious!

  6. Rest & Relaxation top my New Year's Resolutions this year. Here's to 2010!

  7. Believe it or not, I had New Year's Day pork and sauerkraut at friends' yesterday for the first time in my 63 years! And it was fantastic! (I had only eaten 'kraut with bratwurst before this.)

    When we were invited and I offered to bring a side dish, our hostess said, "Oh no, the pork, sauerkraut and mashed potatoes is all we need!" And, I thought, "That sounds realllllly bland." But I was wrong -- it was fantastic. btw, she used Bavarian-style sauerkraut which is a little sweeter -- and might be more to The Mister's liking.

    I hope that I have pork and sauerkraut every New years Day for the rest of my life -- and some in between. I've found a new favorite meal! See? The "good luck" the meal is supposed to bring is happening already! :)

    May 2010 be a happy, healthy year for you and your family.

  8. mmm I love stinky old sauerkraut!


Thanks for stopping by. I love your comments...I get all warm inside just reading them!