Potato Salad and Sauerkraut Recipes

A classic accompaniment for brats; Potato Salad is usually served hot, but is sometimes served at room temperature or cold. Serve sauerkraut warm in the crockpot during the event for people to top their brats with.

German Potato Salad

(recipe from Barb Cohen's Bratfest notes)

  • 3 pounds red salad potatoes, boiled until just tender with skins on
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1/4 pound bacon, chopped
  • 1/4 cup reserved fat from cooked bacon
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • While the potatoes are boiling, dice the celery and onions.  Over medium heat, fry bacon until crisp.  Remove bacon from pan, drain excess fat to 1/4 c. Add onions to fat and sauté until translucent.  Add flour; cook and stir until slightly browned.  Add vinegar, water, sugar, 1/2 tsp. salt, and pepper.  Cook and stir until clear and thickened.
  • Slice potatoes while still hot.  Add remaining 1 tsp. salt to the hot peeled potatoes.  Add celery and sauce to the potatoes and toss gently.

Grandma Kruse Sauerkraut recipe

(recipe from Maria Banks)

  • Jimmy Dean (or similar) tube sausage
  • Two pork chops --KV note: I did 4 thin-cut pork chops and removed the bone, but you can leave the bone in if you want to fish it out later
  • Roughly 5 30-ish oz jars/cans sauerkraut 
  • Two apples (peeled & cored) chopped very roughly
  • One onion (or two depending on onion size) (cut into medium sized pieces)
  • Whole Allspice (roughly 6 pieces) -- KV note: I actually just use 1/8-1/4 teaspoon ground allspice because I hate fishing out the whole pieces
  • Sugar (to taste – small amount) -- KV note: a tablespoon or two
  • Salt (to taste) -- KV note: did not actually add any this year
  • White vinegar (1 tablespoon/splash – to taste) -- KV note: again, didn't actually add this
  • Add water to cover ingredients
  • Brown sausage separately before adding to other ingredients– pour out excess grease
  • Lightly brown pork (optional) in pot before adding other ingredients
  • Rinse each jar of sauerkraut once or twice to reduce sour taste -- KV note: I dump the sauerkraut in a strainer and rinse for maybe 10 seconds
  • Dump everything in large pot and cover with water
  • Keep everything simmering or lightly bubbling, stir occasionally, and add water as needed.
  • Cook until apples and onions and pork disintegrate (some larger chunks will remain)
  • (Chop up/shred pork if it doesn't break apart on its own)
  • KV note: Cook time was roughly about an hour (ish) on the stovetop, then I transferred it to a crockpot on low for another several hours. Probably best to start it at 2 or 3 pm on bratfest day and transfer to a crockpot once the meat is all cooked and let it sit on low until the party starts (and leave it in the crockpot to serve).  
  • Vegetarian version: omit all pork products.  Use 2 apples and one onion per 3 jars of sauerkraut.  Can be done entirely in crockpot because there's no meat to brown.

Grandma Kruse Bavarian Potato salad (Vegan)

(recipe from Maria Banks)

  • Boil potatoes -- KV note: I did a mix of red and russet potatoes
  • Remove skins (while still warm) -- KV note: this is the only part that's a bit of a pain, but the potatoes are better off being boiled with the skins on.
  • Let potatoes cool before cutting (so they can be cut without falling apart)
  • Cutting potatoes (cut into medium thickness round slices (not cubes) – surface area is important!!!!)
  • Salt to taste -- KV note: I put the potato rounds in the foil containers as I cut them and salted each layer of potatoes I put down (a pinch or so per layer, sorry that's not more specific)
  • Pepper (very small amount or none) 
  • Finely chopped parsley (to taste) -- KV note: I used dry parsley and just kind of shook some over each layer of potatoes, much like the salt
  • Vegetable oil and White vinegar (to taste) -- KV note:  started with 1/4 to 1/3 of a cup each whisked together per 7-ish lbs of potato (guessing on the weight, but that's basically per foil pan of potato salad)
  • Finely chopped onions (optional but recommended) -- KV note: did about half - 2/3 of a medium sized onion per 7ish lbs potato salad, but also did one pan without onion
  • Be careful not to over stir – will turn into mashed potatoes!