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german heart

Cardamom is ethnically Indian/South East Asian in origin and forms the spice base of Turkish coffee and chai. Related to the ginger plant, it is one of the common spices in a mix called Garam Masala (a personal fave). Economically it is the 3rd most expensive spice on the planet; only saffron and vanilla are more expensive. Oddly enough, Guatemala is the worlds largest producer/exporter with its indigenous country, India, coming in second. Etymologically, cardamom has spread to all parts of the globe, finding a comfortable spot on the shelves of German & Scandanavian bakers.

Cardamom and Corriander are classic pairings in the spice combination for Lebkuchen, a transplant from the Middle East formerly known as honey cake. There are a good many cookies recipes starring Cardamom. I am most interested in Cardamom for savory dishes, at least in the Summer as it is too hot to bake. I’ve also been looking for an inexpensive source. They were not kidding when they said that it was the 3rd most expensive spice in the world!

I finally found what I was looking for and can now present to you, Grilling German Style: Schweinerippchen with Kraut


  • Pork Ribs

for marinade:

  • 1 medium sweet onion, diced
  • 1 medium to large shallot, diced
  • 1 large anaheim pepper, diced
  • 1 TBS dried chives
  • 2 Cups Jose Quervo margarita mix (or limeade, whatever citrus you have on hand)
  • 2 TBS Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. White pepper
  • 1 tsp. Coriander
  • 2 tsp. Cardamom
  • 4 sprigs fresh German Thyme
  • one dash red pepper flakes
  • 2-3 TBS Rapseed Flower Honey
  • 1-2 TBS Lime Curd

Jar of sauerkraut rinsed

Place trimmed ribs in glass dish, pour mixture over ribs, cover and refridgerate overnight

Fire up your grill. While waiting for the coals to turn to embers, pour the marinade liquid into a heavy sauce pan. On medium heat, bring the mix to a slow rolling boil and cook the onions and peppers through but to a still crisp texture. Rinse the sauerkraut then return to the jar. Scoop out a few tablespoons of onions and peppers and add to the kraut jar. Cook the mixture a few minutes more then add some of the juice to the kraut. Cover and let stand.

When the mixture is reduced by half, enhance with the curd and honey. Cook until the mixture thickens to the point where it covers the back of a spoon.

When the coals are ready grill the ribs as normal. Baste with the sauce each time you flip.

Serve with the sauerkraut.