Diary Of A Comfort Foodie: Race Day Bratwursts

Friday, February 22, 2013 - by Kent Whitaker
Bratsgoodlow
Bratsgoodlow
- photo by Kent Whitaker

The Daytona 500 is this weekend and fans will be doing something in addition to pulling for Dale Earnhardt Jr, watching Danica Patrick start on the pole and keeping an eye out for the “Big One.” There will be plenty of cooking going on! Tailgating is a tradition at any race but when done at Daytona International Speedway things take one the feel of a big game. After all, the Daytona 500 is NASCAR’s “Super Bowl.”

My wife Ally has already penciled me out as a no-show for Oscar Night even though I may pop in for some Red Carpet activities.

To kick off the racing tailgate season I think a classic recipe for Bratwursts are in order. First, there are about a zillion ways to cook a bratwurst as far as style points go. Some people use a beer bath, some use a fruit juice bath, some use a light marinade bath, and some just toss the things on the grill and go for it. All of the above are fine.

The only stead fast rule is to try your best to not puncture the casing and when done make sure that onions and peppers are involved. Or, look for some of Chattanooga’s own topping named “Slawsa.” It’s my new favorite off the shelf topping for anything on a bun. It’s a combination of slaw and relish that I’ve become slightly addicted to. It’s a Chattanooga product that’s in more and more stores across the country!

Here’s a quick way you can grill up some “Brats” for the Daytona 500

Kent’s Brat Bath

This is really a method more than it is a recipe so feel free to adjust to your taste buds. The whole point of this technique is to make sure your bratwurst stays nice and juicy! The choice of beer will add to the flavor. Play around with different varieties.

Ingredients:
1 beer – your choice

2 cups apple juice

4-8 bratwursts

Sliced onions, peppers
Slawsa
Favorite condiments

Directions: Place the beer, bratwurst, apple juice, onions and peppers in a deep sided foil pan and place directly on the grill. Close the lid and allow everything to simmer until bratwursts are beginning to puff up. Keep the pan on the grill but bring each bratwurst out and grill it until golden. Return them to the “bath” and keep them nice and moist until you serve. You can place them back on the grill briefly if you want to get rid of excess moisture. It’s probably a good idea to have additional onions and peppers sliced up as the ones in the bath will be pretty limp at this point. Serve hot on your favorite roll, bun, and bread topped with your favorite items.

Hope you enjoy the recipe and the race because if you can’t be at the race… then you might as well cook like you are! I call it tailgating in place.

(Kent Whitaker is a culinary writer and cookbook author living in Chattanooga. He is the winner of the Emeril Live BBQ contest and winner of an American Authors Association Gold medal. Mr. Whitaker’s books are in bookstores nationwide and are available online. Visit him online at www.thedeckchef.com or @theKentWhitaker)


PHOTOS: Freshmen Footballers Begin Next Level Of Competition

With the return of football to prep campuses across the State of Tennessee on Monday, one group of players are not only getting used to new schools, curriculum and the hazing that comes with being a freshman, they are also learning what it means to step up to that next level of competition. Once such program is at Ooltewah High School where 9th Grade coach Jon Massey is setting ... (click for more)

Mocs Senior Quarterback, Huesman, Named To CFPA 2015 FCS National Performer OF The Year Watch List

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga senior quarterback Jacob Huesman was named to the College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) 2015 FCS National Performer of the Year Trophy Watch List. The list includes thirty-two returning performers from the Football Championship Subdivision.  The award winner will be announced January 13, 2016. Huesman has already garnered ... (click for more)

Assessor Of Property Bill Bennett Will Not Seek Re-Election

Bill Bennett, a longtime fixture in Hamilton County government, announced Monday that he plans to retire at the end of his current term as assessor of property. Mr. Bennett said, "After careful thought, prayer and encouragement from my family, I have made the decision to retire at the end of my current term and not place my name on the ballot for assessor of property in the 2016 ... (click for more)

Funeral Service For Petty Officer 2nd Class Randall Scott Smith Is Tuesday

The funeral service for Petty Officer 2nd Class Randall Scott Smith will be held on Tuesday at 2 p.m. at First Baptist Church in Fort Oglethorpe.   Petty Officer Smith is the last of the five servicemen, and the second in Chattanooga, to be buried after the attack on July 16.   Parking at the church is reserved for family and friends of the Smith family. The public ... (click for more)

What Is #NoogaStrong

I've seen some recent posts asking exactly what Chattanooga Strong means. This week I have seen enough that I believe I can give you a definition of this glorious word.   As a city everyone will not always get along or agree. Often we may ask ourselves what is wrong with these nuts. Often we run across the rude, crude and ugly. But when tragic happens, we all come together ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Chanie's Puzzling Poem

Ronnie Joice was in a bar in north London when he spied a poem tacked to the wall. The more he studied it, the more it revealed and, suddenly, he was floored. I don’t need to tell you it has gone viral, cheering people up particularly in England, but it is fun to know it was written by an 11 th -grader at an all-girls school in New York. Chanie Gorkin first posted it on her page ... (click for more)