For second-generation pickle maker Greg Kruegermann, the perfect Thanksgiving condiment is tangy-sweet and spiced with buttery chunks of roasted apple. And it doesn't contain a single cranberry.
Bright crimson rotkhol--tart red-cabbage-and-apple sauerkraut--is a Krüegermann Pickles staple this time of year. It's usually served warm, nestled between the rouladen (veal or pork rolls stuffed with pork belly and diced pickles) and potato salad on every German holiday table.
This sweet-sour relish also makes a delicious accompaniment to roast chicken, goose and, of course, turkey--and it's especially good on leftover-based sandwiches.
The Kruegermanns, who learned their craft in Lübbenau, a small German town southeast of Berlin, have been pickling cabbages, cucumbers and beets for more than 100 years. When their pickle factory was seized by communist East Germany in the 1960s, Greg's parents packed up their family recipes and headed for Los Angeles.
Today, the family still sources produce from local farms, as they did in Europe, and makes each product by hand at their small Glassell Park factory.
Krüegermann Pickles doesn't sell directly to the public, but find rotkhol and other products at local German markets and delicatessens, including Alpine Village Market, Surfas (in the store and online), European Deluxe Sausage Kitchen in Beverly Hills and Shoop's in Santa Monica.
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