Wednesday, July 25, 2018

the kraut

My boss is insisting on bringing a load of sauerkraut for the luncheon on Friday. He proclaims himself a traditionalist when it comes to the eating of sausages, by which he really means that he cleaves to the Teutonic way of eating them: with mustard and sauerkraut, and little else—especially, Jesus, no fucking ketchup. I told the boss that the meats I had gotten for the chili dogs were Johnsonville "Beddar Cheddar" cheese franks—exactly the wrong kind of frank for a Germanic purist. So this evening, I went up the street to the local "meatateria" (its Korean name is Seolseong Mokjang 설성목장, which I guess means something like "fertile farm"), a butcher shop that also sells a variety of John Cook products (along with pizza and other items). I was in luck: the store had honest-to-goodness Bratwurst—the white kind, which I like better than the brown/tan kind. I also espied a package of long, thin, German-style Frankfurter, so I grabbed a pack of those... and then I saw the kielbasa. It wasn't just a tiny, shrunken-dick sausage: it was an entire loop of fairly thick meat, which is quite unusual to find on the peninsula. Of course, I grabbed a pack off the rack.

This means more grillin' for yours truly tonight, but it shouldn't take too long. Oh, yeah: it occurs to me that I have an extra bottle of beer in my fridge (I bought beer for the chili-making). What I might do, then, is grill the sausages on my stovetop, then braise everything in a shallow pool of beer (sort of a reverse beer instead of a reverse sear). Ach, ja.


  1. 설성 sounds like a place name, and in this case, 목장 is probably a ranch (although I suppose "farm" covers that as well).

    Please let me know how the kielbasa turns out. I'm not sure if I've ever seen the genuine article here.

  2. Big Ho, what is the deal with sausages or hot dogs in a liquid-filled glass jar? I have seen them in Emart and maybe Costco. Unless I am buying soup, I don't want to buy meat stored in liquid.

  3. Charles,

    I may have oversold the kielbasa. It's large, but nowhere near as big as the 4-inch-wide, elephant-raping kielbasas sold at local groceries in the States. The one I bought today is about 1.5" wide, sold as a long (maybe 15"?) horseshoe of sausage in an airtight, molded plastic wrap. I'm about to cook it up, though, in preparation for Friday, so I might have more to say. By the way: grilling/searing followed by braising in beer? Definitely the way to go. I used a humble Corona (wrong region of the world for the meats' flavor profile, I know), and the smell in my place right now is magnificent.


    I'm similarly perplexed, even after having eaten several bottles' worth of that meat. I buy it when I'm feeling super-lazy because it comes out of the bottle absolutely ready to eat. The meat is so soft, so infused with liquid, that you can practically spread it on a cracker. It's completely safe and sterile, despite being animal flesh stored in liquid (I can see why you might find it gross and/or unsafe); this website, which is more of an ad than a neutral exposition, talks about the process of making these bottled sausages.



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