My Octoberfest in Seattle

I have been in Germany a couple of times but never during Octoberfest, which happens to be in September.  When I think of Germany, I think about beer and sausages, fried pork hock, crispy salty skin with succulent juicy meat, my personal favorite.  I will eat it any chance I get but I have never attempted to make it. I love fried food buy I hate to do it at home. Today my friends and I are going to have a TGIF meetup at a brew pub that allows customers to bring food in. Yes, it's true!  What to bring?  Sausages seem to be an easy answer!.  

I have seen sausages cooked with red grapes before but since I still have a lot of apples, I am going to go this route.  Pork and apple are a classic combination.  I can caramelize apples with onion in bacon fat, then add pickled mustard seeds and a dash of apple cider vinegar. Porky spicy sausages with tangy, sweet caramelized apples are balanced with pungent mustard seeds.  Are you with me?

Since this is a very simple dish, best quality ingredients are the key.  Find the best sausage you can since it is the star of the dish.  You can use a combination of different sausages, some sweet, some spicy, it's all up to you.  Today, I am going to use spicy Italian sausages. 

It's also very important how to cook the sausages.  You want them plump and juicy, not dried and hard.  I sear the sausages first until light golden brown, then add some water or beer, cover the pan, and steam until the sausages are cooked. 

This dish will be accompanied by sliced, toasted baguette, oozy brie cheese, and green salsa made from chopped parsley from our garden, garlic, pickled cherry peppers, shallots flavored by red wine vinegar, salt, and fruity olive oil.  It's porky, spicy, salty, sweet, creamy, and herbaceous.  A party in my mouth to be washed down with a cold brew!

This dish can be turned into an easy weeknight dinner. Serve it with mashed potatoes and some pan gravy.  Who wouldn't like that?

Plump sausages with caramelized apples, crowned with crispy guanciale, cherry peppers, and parsley.

green salsa.jpg

This green sauce, made with parsley, garlic, shallots and pickled cherry peppers will brighten up any roast meat or fish (I'd add capers for fish)!  You can use lime juice, apple cider vinegar, or red wine vinegar as acid.  Make sure to add a little bit of sweetener, maple syrup for me, to balance the acidity.  And do not forget salt!!!