Sauerkraut is one of those foods you either love or hate. And I happened to be one of them who loves it. So when I came across the stuffed rolls with sauerkraut and sausage recipe years ago I knew I just had to make it.
I took the results to work to share with my co-workers. They loved it! Many told me that they didn’t like sauerkraut but they loved these. Now many years later my co-workers continue to ask for them.
So do you like sauerkraut, if yes that’s great, if not read on this just might change your mind! Before I get to the recipe let’s review a little information and history on sauerkraut.
What is Sauerkraut?
Sauerkraut is made of finely cut cabbage that has been fermented by various lactic acid bacteria. It has a long shelf life and a distinctive sour flavor, both of which result from the lactic acid that forms when the bacteria ferment the sugars in the cabbage. Wikipedia “Sour Cabbage” is made with finely cut cabbage then salted and left to ferment usually for several days to weeks depending on which recipe you use. But I read somewhere that sauerkraut needs to ferment a minimum of 20 days for:
- good development of taste,
- to get the proper acidity level and
- to allow the complete consumption of the sugar in the cabbage.
A Little History
Sauerkraut is German for “sour cabbage”. Although it is thought that sauerkraut originated in Germany, it is believed that 2000 years ago the Chinese preserved cabbage using rice wine to have food in the non-growing season. Then brought to Europe with the marauding army of Ghenghis Khan. The German people used salt to preserve cabbage and that is the way it is still done today. The Dutch took sauerkraut on their voyages to prevent scurvy. Other sea voyagers quickly caught on and began the same practice. When the Germans and Dutch settlers came to America they brought their recipes for sauerkraut with them.
Fresh Vs Canned
Sauerkraut is a superior source of the probiotic, lactobacillus. In fact, sauerkraut contains far more of this probiotic than yogurt. Canned sauerkraut is pasteurized which kills off the good bacteria. Fresh sauerkraut does not.
This “superfood” also contains lots of vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin C, K, and B6. Also, a good source of Calcium and Magnesium.
Buy fresh sauerkraut made without vinegar to get all the health benefits.
Now let’s get down to business.
Stuffed Rolls With Sauerkraut and Sausage
- 6 bacon strips, diced
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1(16 oz.) can sauerkraut, drained
- 1/2 lb. fully cooked smoked kielbasa or polish sausage
- 2Tbsp. brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp garlic salt
- 1/4 tsp caraway seeds
- 1/8 tsp pepper
- 1 (16 oz.) pkg. hot roll mix
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup warm water (120 to 130 degrees)
- 2 Tbsp butter or margarine, softened
- Poppy seeds
In a skillet cook bacon until crisp; remove to paper towels. Reserve 2 tablespoons drippings. Saute onion in drippings until tender. Stir in sauerkraut, sausage, brown sugar, garlic salt, caraway seeds, and pepper. Cook and stir for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add bacon. Set aside to cool.
In a bowl combine contents of hot roll mix. Stir in 1 egg, water, and butter to form a soft dough. Turn onto a floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Cover the dough with a large bowl and let stand for 5 minutes. Divide dough into 16 pieces. On a floured surface, roll out each piece into a 4-inch circle. Top each with 1/4 cup filling. Fold dough around filling forming a ball; pinch edges to seal. Place seam side down on greased baking sheets. Cover loosely with plastic wrap that has been coated with nonstick cooking spray. Let rise in a warm place for 15 minutes. Beat remaining egg; brush over bundles and sprinkle with poppy seeds. Bake at 350 degrees for 16-17 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm
Try Something You Don’t Like, You Just Might be Surprised
If you like sauerkraut great, you are going to love these. If not try them you just might be surprised. I know many that have told me they didn’t like sauerkraut but absolutely love these. I did want to mention that I have tweaked this recipe a little. I add an extra tablespoon of brown sugar (I love my sugar). I also use a can of Bavarian sauerkraut (it has caraway seeds already in the sauerkraut). This will save you the extra cost of buying caraway seeds if you don’t already have them. But by all means, use fresh sauerkraut if that is what you prefer. It works as well. I also use frozen rolls instead of the hot roll mix. They are already portioned and no extra mixing or kneading needed. Just thaw them out in your refrigerator and roll each one into a 4-inch circle and fill.
Try this recipe and leave me a comment below and let me know what you think. Did you change your mind about sauerkraut? I would love to hear from you.