John Besh's Choucroute Garnie Recipe

Jan 3, 2014 3:00 pm

A meat over sauerkraut platter served family style

Photo: Maura McEvoy
Photo: Maura McEvoy
John Besh's choucroute is the perfect pairing for beer during the winter months.

Here's something we need three of: cookbooks by John Besh. His latest book, Cooking From The Heart, is an ode to his culinary journey. Discover where some of his favorite dishes, techniques and ingredients originate and how you can make them at home like the famed Louisiana chef himself.

Choucroute, like many peasant foods, is best served family style — on a huge platter of sauerkraut studded with sausages and bacon. Here, a more demure portion at Winstub Henriette in Mulhouse. Search your farmers markets for artisanal fermented sauerkraut. You’ll find its deep flavor makes all the difference.

See that time John Besh took over our Instagram account here

Reprinted with permission from Cooking From The Heart

Servings: 8 -10


2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 onions, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
freshly ground black pepper
2 cups dry Riesling
1 pound pork belly
8 ounces slab bacon, diced
1 ham hock
6 cups sauerkraut, rinsed and squeezed dry
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
2 juniper berries, crushed
1 bay leaf
4 medium yellow potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 pound bratwurst links (about 4)
1 pound garlic sausage
2 tablespoons honey
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Heat the oil in a medium heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add half the onions, the carrots and celery and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add 2 cups water, the wine and pork belly and bring to a boil. Cover, transfer to the oven and braise until the belly is tender, about 2 hours. Let cool in the braising liquid. Set the pork belly aside, then strain and reserve the liquid.
  2. Render the bacon in a heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add the remaining onions and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium, add the braised pork belly, ham hock, sauerkraut, caraway seeds, juniper berries and bay leaf. Cover with the reserved braising liquid and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer about 45 minutes.
  3. Add the potatoes, bratwurst, garlic sausage and honey to the sauerkraut, cover and steam together for 30 minutes more.
  4. To serve, slice the pork belly into serving pieces. Discard the bay leaf. Mound the sauerkraut on a generous platter and pile the meat and potatoes on top.

Try out these recipes with sauerkraut on Food Republic:

Level of Difficulty: 
Prep Time: 
20 minutes
Cooking Time: 
2 hours, 30 minutes
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