It is almost October, which is probably my favorite month. I love the leaves, the first little bit of coolness in the air, pumpkins, Halloween, and of course Oktoberfest. Since marrying my husband four years ago, Oktoberfest has become a bit more important, since he is of German descent. I have mentioned this before, but in case you missed it, he was raised by a German mother, so all things German are important. This sandwich is the perfect Oktoberfest entree being full of brats and sauerkraut.
I am going to give you this recipe as one sandwich, though you will probably make more, but I think it is easier to follow as one. We had delicious gourmet fresh brats from Patek’s Meats, so we took the time to boil them in beer before grilling them, but if you are using pre-cooked brats, this might no be necessary. Boiling brats before grilling them flavors them with whatever your are boiling them in and makes the casings more elastic, so that they are less likely to split during grilling. It also reduces the time on the grill. If you are like me, many times when I have grilled brats without boiling, I have had brats that were almost burned on the outside, and cut them open to find them not done inside. Boiling them will prevent this. I used country Dijon mustard, but German would be much better. Unfortunately, we are out of German mustard, and it is not readily available in our area.
We served them with Black Bee Hard Cider from Mercier Orchards, which I will be reviewing soon!
- 1 brat
- dark beer for boiling
- 2 pieces of pumpernickel bread
- 2 tsps. mustard (Use German if you can find it. We were out of it, so I used country Dijon.)
- 2 Tbsps. sauerkraut, heated and drained
- 2 oz. Gruyere cheese, sliced
- Boil brats in dark beer for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Grill until done and brown on the outside.
- Heat panini press or grill. (I used a George Foreman indoor grill.)
- Slice brat into three length-wise slices.
- Spread mustard on both pieces of bread.
- Top one slice of bread with brat slices, sauerkraut, cheese, and the other slice of bread.
- Place on press or grill. Close and cook about 5 minutes or until cheese is melted through.