Napa Sauerkraut Steamed in Alsatian Wine

What better way to enjoy home-fermented, probiotic sauerkraut than to infuse it with Riesling wine from Alsace? Steaming sauerkraut rather than braising it has the added advantage of helping remove much of the salt. Apples and caraway round out the complex flavors of this cold-weather side dish, a perfect accompaniment for franks and boiled potatoes.

Thinly slice:

  • 1 Napa cabbage

In a large bowl, toss it with:

  • 1 tablespoon Guérande sea salt

Press and squeeze the cabbage and salt together for several minutes to release the juices from the cabbage, then press it into a wide-mouthed, non-metal container until it is submerged in its own juices. Place something flat and heavy on top (also non-metal) to keep the cabbage submerged. Cover with a tea towel and allow it to ferment for 3 weeks at room temperature.

When ready to serve, drain cabbage and place in the top of a steamer with:

  • 2 peeled, cored apples sliced in wedges
  • 1 teaspoon whole caraway seeds

Fill the bottom of the steamer to a depth of 1 inch with:

  • Dry white wine, preferably Riesling

Place the upper part of the steamer (containing the sauerkraut) on top and cover with a lid. Bring wine to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer and steam until the apples are soft, about 30 minutes. Serves 4.

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