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Original recipe yields 10 servings
If you want to smother your brats with barbeque sauce, mustard, and sauerkraut to kill the taste, this recipe is o.k. I'm 100% German, eat brats once a week - but I like the natural flavor of fresh brats. It's actually the poking of the brats with a fork that wrecks this recipe. It dries out the brats and lets the natural flavors seep out. You may want to try this recipe without poking holes in the brats to keep the flavor sealed in.
Hubby would probably only rate this as 3-star as he is a bratwurst purist and prefers his brats slow-grilled without parboiling. Occasionally he'll agree to having this brats and beer method, which I just love. As Wisconsinites we know it's a continued debate as to which way is best. No matter which method, we also know brats to be included in nearly everyone's backyard cook-outs or Green Bay Packers or Milwaukee Brewers tailgates. You can smell it in the air! That said, don't poke the brats! Why would you do that? Also, as for keeping them on hold in a slow cooker, I see this done frequently, particularly at large gatherings, but be forewarned that the beer taste intensifies this way, kind of killing that good bratwurst flavor and softens them, taking away that juicy crunch (from the browned casing) when you bite into them. For those of you living in regions of the country where brats are not available, our Usinger's brand is WONDERFUL and can be ordered online at www.usingers.com. Good, sturdy brat buns, if you can find them in your area, are a must!
I was having a Christmas party and wanted to do something with some frozen Johnsville Brats that were in the freezer for 4 months, so I thought I would give this recipe a try. I also did not poke holes in them, other than that I followed the recipe. After cooking the brats in the beer mixture I strained the onions and sautéed them further and then added them to a cola sauerkraut recipe found on this site. That evening my husband grilled the brats and could not stop eating them, I was afraid I would not have any left for the party the next day. He kept on saying that I must have used some very good brats! After they were grilled I cut them in half and mixed them in the cola sauerkraut. The night of the party I warmed the mixture in the microwave and the kept it warm in a chafing dish. I served fresh Italian bread cut to the size of the mini brats for those wanting to eat it on a bun. The moral of my story is the 4-month-old brats that I wanted to get rid of, turned out to be the hit of the party. I was asked over and over who made the brats. Thanks for a good recipe, I am sure I will make this many times over, I might even buy some high quality fresh brats! this was the other dish I made http://sidedish.allrecipes.com/az/ClSrkrt.asp