Sunday, June 20, 2010

Brats on the Grill for Father's Day~



A favorite of many dads that you will find on grills and cookouts throughout Milwaukee and Wisconsin today for Father's Day today is the bratwurst.

Quoting from Wikipedia:

The Bratwurst was popularized in Sheboygan County, Wisconsin in the 1920s. In general, each local butcher shop would take orders and hand make bratwurst fresh to be picked up on a particular day. The fat content of the sausages was substantial, making this necessary to avoid spoilage. Much of the fat was removed during the cooking over charcoal. Usually one kept a pan of cold water handy to the grill, so it was easy to dip one's fingers in and fling the water onto the flames caused by the burning of the excess fat.

Though originally brought to North America by German immigrants, it is a common sight at summer cookouts, right alongside the famous hot dog.

To read more about the bratwurst's history and tradition in Wisconsin click here. Just to give you an idea how popular bratwurst are in Wisconsin (due to the Founding Fathers' German heritage) we have several large manufacturers such as Johnsonville, Klements, and Usingers.  Also, every good local meat market makes there own special recipe for bratwurst.

Since brats are a fairly fatty sausage, I like to pre-boil them for about 30 minutes in a pot of beer and onions before putting them on the grill.  This gets much of the fat out and reduces flare-ups when they are grilled.  The beer and onions also give them a great taste.  (Most brats are made from pork but you can also find them made of beef.)


I boil them in the morning and then let them stay in the liquid, refrigerated, until it's time to put them on the grill.  They only need about 15 minutes on the grill to brown on all sides.

Placed on a bed of caramelized onions with a little hearty mustard on a pretzel bun...it doesn't get much better than this for a summertime treat!  Some corn on the cob, fresh tomatoes with EVOO, balsamic and fresh basil not to mention the first harvested peas from my garden round out the meal.  I love this time of year!


I hope whatever you are doing today on Father's Day you have a wonderful day!

23 comments:

  1. This is a favorite of my husband and sons'. I was told by a farmer years ago about boiling them in beer and have done it ever since. Have a wonderful weekend!
    xoxo Pattie

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  2. One of my favorites too! I don't care for Italian sausage but love brats!

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  3. Oh yes, you live in Wisconsin!! We lived in Eau Claire and La Crosse for 20 years. Usingers bockwurst at Easter was always the best. Glad to read this today. Thanks. Hmmm..how about those cheese curds?

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  4. They look great, I can see why they'd be a favorite! Especially in that pretzel bun! I have to look for them!

    Happy Father's Day (and Grandpa Day!)

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  5. We love brats! We have the best little meat store that has all types of brats. Ribs for us for Father's Day!

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  6. OMG, brats + caramelized onions + pretzel bun - Lady, you rock! I will have to make these beauties real soon, how great for Summer. Thanks so much for sharing - my husband will be VERY happy:)

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  7. I really love a good sausage, especially on a pretzel bun. Pretzel buns are good things. I really like your beer and onion method of preparation! I'm so going to have to try that!

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  8. It's a favorite around here too, Susan. You just can't beat it for a BBQ! Love that you boil them a bit in beer and onions!
    Looks like you had a yummy day!

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  9. Love those brats! I bought some at the farmers market on the weekend and will follow your suggestion about simmering them in beer and onions. Yum.

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  10. This is one of those simple meals that's just so delicious you can't even believe it. Perfect! I've been hearing about pretzel buns everywhere and seriously NEED to try them!

    Sues

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  11. The best brats I've ever had were at a small restaurant about a block from the Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee. Second best at Whisling Straits. No wonder, they are both in Wisconsin!!

    Best,
    Bonnie

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  12. I've never served them properly! Thanks for the history lesson and the boiling tip. Where have I been my whole life? Your picture looks wonderful, what a bun!

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  13. We are brat fans here too! But you made yours a little healthier by serving it with some green veggies!
    Glad you had a good day.
    I don't think we have buns like that here!

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  14. Never knew any of that about brats, even though my gram came from there (from a farm overlooking lake michigan!). I also have never heard of pretzel buns... you must tell us more (recipe!) SOunds like a lovely cookout.

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  15. My sweet hubby is not big on brats, but I may be able to get him hooked by simmering them in beer and onions :-) Perhaps on the Fourth of July. Thanks for sharing Susan.

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  16. What a lovely blog you have! your pictures are of course perfection. This is a recipe that is sure to be a hit at our house; when my boys come to visit it will be on the menu and so simple.
    Rita

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  17. Wow! That looks fabulous!
    Being a Wisconsin girl, I am certainly a brat lover!
    Thanks for the congrats too!
    Cindy

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  18. One of my most favorite things to eat!!! YUMMY, your photos are amazing.

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  19. I recently tried brats and wow I am forever hooked, thanks for sharing, great tips

    sweetlife

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  20. Love brats - sounds like a great meal for anytime but especially for Fathers Day. Wish I could find bread like that here..sounds grat!

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  21. I didn't previously know this information about bratwurst, interesting. I like the idea of boiling these sausages prior to cooking, it probably also helps keep them moist.

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