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German-style sausages are brilliant convenience food. They travel well and cook in no time at all. Serve them as hot dogs or turn them into supper.

 

Have a hot dog party

Lay out the ingredients and let everyone build their own. Here are three great combo ideas:

1. Salty pretzel roll

• debreziner/cheese griller
• caramelised onions

 

2. German-style roll

• bratwurst
• German mustard
• sauerkraut

 

3. Soft sweet roll

• wienerwurst
• finely chopped gherkin
• mayonnaise
• crispy onion sprinkles

 

How to make caramelised onions

Add two tablespoons of butter and two thinly sliced onions to a medium-sized pot over medium-low heat and put the lid on. Cook for 15 minutes, then remove the lid and cook for 45 minutes, stirring regularly, until soft and caramelised. Add sea salt to taste. (Increase or decrease the quantity as you need. Just remember the basic ratio: one onion to one tablespoon butter.)

 

Which wurst?

Wursts are basically a preserved product. They’re either smoked or pre-cooked, which means they’re firmer than fresh sausages, won’t spoil as easily, have a longer shelf life and are quicker and easier to cook.

Debreziner
Mostly pork, thin but juicy, spicy and orange with paprika.

Wienewurst
Like a frankfurter but shorter, mostly pork and some beef, lightly smoked.

Bratwurst
Cold-smoked, made of pork and seasoned with white pepper and caraway.

Bockwurst
Thicker, mainly pork, some beef, sometimes with garlic, lightly smoked. Enjoy with Bock beer.

Frankfurter
Mostly pork and some beef, lightly smoked. Lay a poached pair over a plate of potato salad.

 

How to cook sausage

Browning makes all the difference to wurst, so turn them on the braai (a gas braai works particularly well) or pop them under the grill – just cut slits into the top to prevent splitting elsewhere. To fry them, prick the sausages on one side using a fork and rub with oil. Cook in a medium-hot pan until nicely browned.

 

Coleslaw Relish

If there’s leftover cabbage and parsley, make this to go alongside or on a hot dog. 1T red wine vinegar or lemon juice, freshly squeezed

Ingredients
3T extra-virgin olive oil
1 small red cabbage, cored and very thinly sliced
1 red chilli, finely sliced
handful of parsley, very finely chopped
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method
1. In a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar and oil.
2. Add the cabbage, chilli and parsley and season generously.
3. Toss well and serve.

 

What wine?

When you’re making vinegar, acetic acid is a vital ingredient. For winos it’s a swear word. So this month, with an abundance of vinegary sides on offer, the best wine advice I can offer is: put down the corkscrew and step away from the table!

 

What beer?

Southern Germany’s most underrated ritual is breakfasting on pale veal weisswurst and a pretzel, washed down with a pint of weissbier. Before 12 noon. Wunderbar! To be weiss, the beer must be brewed from 50 per cent or more malted wheat and the rest from barley. The result is lighter in colour (weiss is German for ‘white’) than a traditional top-fermented ale, with all sorts of weird and wonderful things happening on the nose: fruity and spicy all at once, with hints of citrus.

You’ll have to decide whether you prefer unfiltered hefeweizen or its clear sibling, kristallweizen, but you can’t go wrong either way. Time was you had to scour the import shelf for a Paulaner, Erdinger or Franziskaner, but with our craft scene exploding there’s plenty of quality homegrown weissbier available.

 

My top tipples

CBC Amber Weiss (R35). The Cape Brewing Co makes some of the finest boutique beer in the country, but there’s something extra-special about this little beauty. Unlike their Krystal, Amber is a cloudy ‘hefe’, perfectly balanced, voluptuous and irresistible.

Jonker’s Weiss (R25) is a product of the award-winning Stellenbrau brewery, and it’s got the telltale banana esters and clove phenolics that beer aficionados will instantly recognise as the result of Bavaria’s king of yeasts, weihenstephan.

Carver’s Weiss (R18) is SAB’s entrant: slightly cloudy and creamy and relatively light for a weiss (perhaps a bit bitter for real fundis). You have to love the upside-down label on the back encouraging you to turn the bottle on its head and rouse the yeast.

Also read: 10 Cape craft beers to try out this summer

 

 

This story first appeared in the July 2017 issue of Getaway magazine.

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