Did this last weekend. Where I live I have two choices in making Sauerbraten 1, either buy the meat in marinade, either at the butcher or even an Aldi store, or marinade myself.

The store bought meat is often on the sour side, so part of the fun in doing your own is to tone down the sourness a bit and amp up the spices.



1 carrot, leek, celeriac
1 large onion
1 tbsp sugar
150 ml red wine vinegar
1 bottle dry red wine
1 tsp juniper berries
1 tsp black pepper berries
1 tsp all spice berries
3 dried bay leaves or 5 - 6 fresh ones
2 clovers
1 star anis
1 ½ kg braising beef


3 tbsp lard
2 tbsp tomato puree
800 ml beef broth
100 g Schwarzbrot or Pumpernickel
50 g raisins
50 ml Rübenkraut (sugar beet syrup)
2 tbsp cold butter
200 ml cream, sour cream or creme fraiche


Caramelise the sugar and deglaze with the vinegar. Add the red wine and spices, add the onion cut into eighths and carrot, leek and celeriac cut into 5 mm cubes. Bring to a boil and let cool.

When cold add the beef and marinade for 5 to 6 days, turning daily.

After marinading dry the beef and brown from all sides in hot lard. Reserve about 500 ml of the marinade, having sieved out the solids. Add the tomato puree.

Cover the raisins with apple juice or water

After browning add the reserved marinade and the beef broth, the beet syrup, salt, pepper and the Schwarzbrot (it will desolve while braising). Bring to a simmer and finish braising for ca. 3 hours in a 120 - 130 C oven in a closed braising pot.

When the meat is done remove it and let rest for 15 minutes or so.

Bring the liquid to the boil and reduce by third or halve until the sauce has thickened, add the butter and cream, use an immersion blender to “creamify” the rest of the bread in the sauce. Season to taste. If the sauce is not sour enough add some more vinegar, if it is to sour, add some more of the beet syrup 2. Add the raisins.

Serve with spätzle, noodles, mash or potatoes.

Traditionally this is farmers fare. The meat was likely to come from an old cow (which would have been milked and used for ploughing) or an equally old horse. The marinade was supposed to both tenderise and conserve the meat

  1. We are talking a Rheinischer Sauerbraten. What makes a Sauerbraten Rhenish are three essential and one optional ingredient. Essential are Rübenkraut, and Schwarzbrot or Pumpernickel to thicken the sauce and raisins, optional are almonds [return]
  2. Rübenkraut is sugar beet syrup, which tastes sweet, earthy and a little bit bitter [return]

While I’m starting a new #sourdough starter, I did a „normal“ loaf. Looks good. Now need to let it cool to see what the long (12 h outside around 1-2 C, then another 12 h in the kitchen) ferment did for the taste. No 3.2021

Had to start a „normal“ bread while I start the new #sourdough. Will let the dough ferment outside (ca 2 C) until tonight.

For some unknown reason my #sourdough (organic rye) fell ill. The colour turned reddish, the smell went strange. No change in method I’m aware of. Started a new one.

Hike in the woods

We drove to Schloss Ehreshoven and did a hike around the Agger reservoir 1. Nice hike.

The Schloss, a Wasserschloss, still has a filled moat. Today it houses a pensioners home, the archive of the Rheinische Ritterschaft and some of the rooms ca be hired for events.

Some snow on the surrounding hills, lots of mud on the road.

  1. erected in the 1930ies it drives [turbines)( to produce electricity [return]

Location: Engelskirchen (Schloss Ehreshoven)
Height: 109,1
Coordinates: 50,97 - 7,34

Pancake, crepe, galette

  • 100g plain flour
  • 100g buckwheat flour
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • About 500ml milk
  • pinch of salt

Loosely based on a River Cottage #recipe

No. 2.2021


(Blender) Hollandaise

Am going to try this today. Basically blend the yolks with the salt, pepper, lemon juice and then add the melted butter. It’ll go with dill potatoes and salmon.

  • 3 large egg yolks
  • salt
  • pepper
  • fresh lemon juice
  • 115 g butter


About 3 minutes of snow, perhaps half a millimetre. #snow

No 1.2021

I wonder what I need to do for more consistency? Otherwise, a nice #sourdough loaf.

Decade Book

Started year 4 in my “decade book”.

Elisabeth gave me the book for Christmas 2017 and I started writing in it on the 1st of January 2018.

The book has a page per day, with “lanes” for 10 years. With my writing I can fit 3 lines in a day. A typical entry starts with location, weather, health and then whatever I feel is noteworthy.

The first year was a bit boring but got interesting from year 2. I don’t read the old entries every day, but when I do I like the perspective.

Many days are a insight free litany of stuff. But later this shows the periods of stress.

Would recommend.


Really the last one

Good rise in the fridge, but deflated a bit on the way to the oven. Nice crust though. #sourdough

Photo review 2020 - December

The photos from December I liked the most

Photo review 2020 - November

The photos from November I liked the most

Photo review 2020 - October

The photos from October I liked the most

Photo review 2020 - September

The photos from September I liked the most

Photo review 2020 - August

The photos from August I liked the most

Photo review 2020 - July

The photos from July I liked the most


The vacation is continuing, I’m feeling less stressed. I sleep better and longer. More exercise, more time to myself.

But I’m still waiting for that bit of creativity to turn up, … Thankfully there’s still 2 more weeks.

Last sourdough of the year?

Photo review 2020 - June

The photos from June I liked the most

Photo review 2020 - May

The photos from May I liked the most

Photo review 2020 - April

The photos from April I liked the most

(c) - 2021