This is the eleventh post in the Freezer Meals series. If you want to make sure you never miss a post, sign up for the Crossroad Health Newsletter on the right side of this page (under the photo). You’ll only receive e-mails when a new post is up and your e-mail address is never shared. Be sure you check your inbox after signing up, as you’ll need to confirm that you actually subscribed.
Grünkohl is actually the German word for kale, but it often refers to what is perhaps my favorite German dish of kale, potatoes, and sausage. There are hundreds of versions, but we usually just throw everything together and enjoy the slight differences of each batch. Because of this, this is probably the least structured of all the freezer meals. I hope you’ll try it out, but if you’re really uncomfortable without strict quantities and directions you might want to skip this one. It tastes best with fresh kale, but that is a lot of work so we usually use frozen. This is actually the first thing Dominik ever made for me and I’ve been enjoying it ever since. We usually make a big batch of this and freeze half. The recipe is already doubled below, so just cut it in half if you don’t want to freeze it or just want to freeze it and not eat it now. Enjoy!
- 2 different packages of sausage (Sometimes we use 1 package of bratwurst and 1 package of polish sausage or kielbasa. In Germany Dominik frequently used something similar to kielbasa for one package and something similar to traditional hot dog weenies for the other. Don’t use chicken or turkey sausage- they are too dry. In my opinion kielbasa is the best, so try at least one of those or even two different brands!) Slice them up into chunks or small circles.
- 6-8 slices smoked bacon, cut into small pieces
- boiling potatoes, peeled and diced (you want these to hold up and not completely turn into mashed potato). The quantity is a bit of a personal taste, but I usually use 4-6 small to medium potatoes.
- 3-4 bags (or 4-5 boxes) frozen kale. I can’t really give you a good estimate on fresh kale since it cooks down so much- probably 6+ full bunches, washed, stem removed, and chopped.
- Cooking fat. In a recipe like this, bacon grease is usually best. At least use some type of animal fat if you can: tallow, schmaltz, etc. If you can’t find any of that then use butter.
- German mustard (not sweet!). This is my favorite (you can find it at World Market- it isn’t very spicy), but you want a slightly spicy mustard. A slight horseradish mustard (cheap store brand is fine), dijon mustard, or brown mustard is fine- just no sweet mustards.
- A very large pot (I’m including this to warn you now that, although you will actually need two pots, the main pot needs to be fairly large- it always is more than you think.)
- Freezer container or gallon freezer bag.
- Boil the potatoes in the smaller pot of the two. This is all you will use this pot for, so judge accordingly. Salted water is a bit nicer. Drain & set aside until ready to use.
- In the largest pot, cook the bacon until it is almost cooked through. You can add a little extra fat if needed- you don’t want it to stick.
- Add the sliced sausage and stir and cook until it starts to brown ad bit. You may need to add a bit more fat to keep it from sticking.
- Add the kale, stir well until cooked. Add a bit of salt and pepper.
- Add a little water if it looks dry.
- Add the potatoes and stir well.
- Again, add a little water if it looks dry. A bit more salt and pepper is usually good here- just taste.
- Add in some mustard. This one is definitely a personal preference. You don’t want to kill it with mustard- you can serve it with the mustard at the table so people like me can add lots of extra mustard.
- It should taste really good at this point, but it does usually taste even better the second day.
- Cool and freeze in labelled gallon freezer bags. (I used two).
- The label should include the date and recipe name. Since it is fully cooked I just noted that it just needs to be thawed and heated on the bag. Freeze it flat to save space.
Check back every Tuesday and Thursday for a new Freezer Meal!
Be sure to follow food safety guidelines when freezing and thawing food. Ensuring your freezer is at the proper temperature is one of the most important steps in storing food. You can find more information here if you have any questions.