Mention German cuisine and most people will think of sausages, for which Germany is famous. This is understandable as there are over fifteenhundred varieties available, but the cuisine is about far more than the humble sausage; many other ingredients are to be found in use in the German kitchen. Beef is not as popular as some of the other meats, but game meats such as venison and hare are widely available. Vegetables are used extensively in soups and stews, as well as an accompaniment to meat dishes. Freshwater fish are also popular. Sauerbraten, meaning sour roast, was developed as a way of preparing the less tender cuts of meat, but is now used with other cuts because of its unique flavour.
WHAT YOU NEED.
1.5kg beef short ribs
• salt and ground black pepper
• 1 tbs vegetable oil
• 350ml water
• 160ml cider vinegar
• 160mlred wine vinegar
• 12 juniper berries
• 9 whole cloves
• 2 bay leaves
• 1 tbs salt
• 1/2 tsp freshly ground blackpepper
• 240ml cold water
• 2 tbs butter
• 1 large onion, chopped
• 2 stalks celery, chopped
• 1 carrot, chopped
• 3 cloves garlic, minced
• 240ml water
• 240ml chicken broth
• 2 tbs white sugar, or to taste
• 120gcrushed gingersnaps
• 1 tbs balsamic vinegar
• salt and pepper to taste
WHAT TO DO.
Season the short ribs on both sides with salt and black pepper.
• Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed frying pan over medium-high heat.
• Cook the short ribs, turning frequently, until browned on all sides, about 10 minutes (you will need to cook them in batches.)
• Allow to cool slightly before transferring to a large bowl.
• Pour the 350ml water, cider vinegar, and red wine vinegar into the warm frying pan and bring to a simmer.
• Cook and stir, scraping any browned bits off the bottom of the pan.
• Add the juniper berries, cloves, and bay leaves, salt and black pepper.
• Remove from heat and add240ml cold water.
• Pour the mixture over the ribs and place the tub in an ice bath until chilled - around 40 minutes.
• Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for a minimum of 24 hours.
• Melt butter in a large, heavy pan or Dutch oven over medium heat.
• Stir fry the onion, celery, and carrot in the melted butter until the vegetables are softened. *Add the garlic and cook for a further minute.
• Place the marinated short ribs over the top of the onion mixture.
• Add the 240ml of water, chicken broth, and sugar to the marinade then pour over the top of the ribs.
• Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.
• Reduce to low, cover and simmeruntil meat is tender.
• Remove meat to a platter.
• Discard the juniper berries, cloves, and bay leaves- if you can find them!
• Sprinkle the cooked onion mixture over the top of the meat, reserving the excess cooking liquid in the pan.
• Place the pan with remaining cooking liquid over medium-high heat.
• Use a food processor to grind gingersnaps until fine, then add to the liquid in the pan.
• Stir in the balsamic vinegar and boil until reduced and thickened; skim off any fat that rises.Season with salt to taste.
• Strain through a fine mesh sieve, spoon over the beef, and serve.