From late September through early October, Germany holds its 16-day Oktoberfest—a time to enjoy Old World foods and classic beers.

No Oktoberfest celebration is complete without sauerkraut or Rotkraut (red cabbage), which Americans tend to regard solely as a hot-dog condiment. In Germany, however, sauerkraut—which literally means “sour cabbage”—is served as a standalone salad or a relish for virtually any meat.

Numerous studies point to sauerkraut’s health benefits, which include aiding digestion and, quite possibly, fighting cancer. It’s not uncommon for Germans to enjoy a glass of organic sauerkraut juice to maintain gastrointestinal health. 

Be advised, however, that sauerkraut has a high sodium content, so consume it in moderation. If you want to cook up a batch from scratch, check out Making Sauerkraut and Pickled Vegetables at Home

Tune in tomorrow for a savory Oktoberfest recipe: Creamy Sauerkraut with Chives. 

Live in Ohio?

Have a grand ol’ time at the 40th Annual Ohio Sauerkraut Festival, held Oct. 10–11 in Waynesville. Creative cooks compete in a sauerkraut recipe contest, with last year’s winners scoring points for Sauerkraut Carrot Cake, Sauerkraut Egg Rolls and Bacon Kraut Potato Salad.