Traditional German Sauerbraten
Ingredients for marinade:
- 1814 g (4 lb.) of boneless bottom round roast
- 500 ml (16.9 oz) dry Red Wine
- 250 ml (8.45 oz) red wine vinegar OR red raspberry vinegar
- 1 teaspoon of black pepper corns
- 6 whole cloves
- 2-3 bay leaves depending on size
- 1 teaspoon of mustard seeds
- 10 Juniper berries
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- 2 stems of fresh marjoram leaves
- 500 g (1.1 lb.) of onions
Preparation of marinade for Traditional German Sauerbraten:
Wash the meat under running water and dry with a paper kitchen towel. Cut the fat away. Mix the vinegar with the red wine. Cut 500 g (1.1 lb.) of onions into chunky pieces, break the bay leaves, wash the marjoram and separate the leaves from the stem while striping them from top to bottom against the grain; mix cloves, juniper berries, and pepper corns and crack/crush them (I used a coffee grinder).
Cut the onions in chunks. Add the spices, salt, mustard seeds, and onions to the vinegar/wine mixture. Bring the mixture to a boil in a saucepan and cook for about 5 minutes. Let the mixture cool down a little. Place the meat either in a bowl or in a Ziploc bag with an expandable bottom and zipper. Pour the lukewarm marinade over the meat. If you are using a bowl cover the bowl, if you are using a Ziploc bag close the zipper. Place the bowl/bag in a refrigerator for 3 – 5 days. Turn the meat from time to time so that all sides are marinated equally.
Ingredients for meat and gravy:
- marinated meat
- 80 g (2.82 oz) of celery knob
- 200 g (7.05 oz) of leek
- 150 g (5.29 oz) of carrots
- 300 g (10.58 oz) of onions
- 60 g (2.11 oz) of vegetable shortening
- 2 cubes of Knorr beef bouillion
- 1 teaspoons of salt
- 3 tablespoons of corn starch
Preparation of Sauerbraten:
Take the meat out of the marinade and dry the meat with a kitchen paper towel. Pour the marinade through a sieve into a bowl and set aside. Heat the shortening in a roasting pan and brown the meat on all sides. Remove the meat from the roasting pan and place it on a plate. Cut onions, carrots, celery knob, and leeks and add them to the shortening in the roasting pan. First roast the onions until they are transparent, then add the rest of the vegetables and gently steam them before adding the liquid of the marinade.
Place the meat back in the roasting pan, if necessary add some water to ensure the meat is evenly covered. Bring to a boil and then turn the heat down. Cover it and let it simmer for about 2 – 2 ½ hours. Check on the meat regularly and if necessary add water to the roasting pan to replace the evaporated liquids.
Finishing Traditional German Sauerbraten:
When the meat is done remove it from the roasting pan and wrap it in aluminum foil right away. Let it rest for about 10 minutes. In the meantime pass the liquids through a food mill or a sieve to make the gravy. Measure and if necessary add water. You should have 1 ½ l — 1.58 qt of gravy. Return liquids to a saucepan and bring to a boil before adding 2 cubes of crumbled beef bouillon. Dissolve 3 tablespoons of cornstarch in 4 tablespoons of red wine and add the starch to the gravy so it thickens. Add salt and pepper.
Note: After the meat is removed from the saucepan, you can crumble about 150 g — 5.29 oz gingerbread or ginger cookies into the liquids. Let it simmer for 10 minutes or until the gingerbread/cookies are soft. Pass the gravy through the food mill or a sieve.
Use a sharp knife or an electrical knife to cut the meat of the Sauerbraten in nice slices before placing them on the serving plate. You can serve the Sauerbraten with Oma’s Classic German Potato Dumplings, German Yeast Dumplings or German Homemade Spaetzle, and the Traditional Red Cabbage.