Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Pfälzer Saumagen Recipe/ Chancellor Helmut Kohl's favorite

This dish was a favorite of German chancellor Helmut Kohl. He had it made and served to high-profile guests such as Margaret Thatcher, Mikhail Gorbachev, Ronald Reagan and François Mitterrand. It is typically served with mashed potatos and sauerkraut. Most Americans will find this a bit off-putting as the meat is cooked in a pig's stomach. The literal translation of saumagen means "sow's stomach".
This dish is a speciality of the Rhinland-Pfalz region in Germany. It was one of the first dishes proudly served to us in our little village of Clausen years ago.  It is as important to the  Pfälzer people as the Haggis is to a Scot.  I have had very spicy saumagen and non-spicy saumagen.  I prefer the spicy.  Nowadays the butcher shops sell it in a plastic casing, not the traditional stomach.  I cook mine in an oven bag instead of the traditional pig's stomach.

1 1/2 pound pork roast cut into cubes
4 large potatoes diced even smaller than you see here
32 ozs spicy minced pork sausage (I used Jimmy Dean)
 (sometimes I use pork sausage from bratwurst, just take off the casing)
**If you don't like SPICY,  use only minced/ground pork sausage with no added seasoning. Use two Jimmy Dean NON-spicy 16 oz. ground pork and add seasonings below**
But if you like spicy use TWO 16 oz. Jimmy Dean Spicy pork sausauge WITH the below seasoning!

1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon dried marjoram 
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
2 Ground bay leaves
3 tablespoons diced onions (or 1 teaspoon onion powder)

Cut the pork meat into cubes. Peel potatoes and cut into small cubes.  Now mix the pork cubes, potatoes and the sausage together.
 Add your seasonings and mix well.

I use oven roasting bags instead of pig stomach to cook my saumagen. Times have moved on and it's much harder to get a pig's stomach to cook the saumagen in these days. 

After you have mixed your ingredients, place them in an oven roasting bag.
Round it to look like this in the bag.

Now place inside ANOTHER roasting bag and seal.
This is very important to double bag.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Reduce heat and place stomach into the water. Simmer for 3 hours. Don't let the water boil.  I turn the bag every hour so the other side cooks evenly, but you don't have to. 

After 3 hours, remove the stomach from the pot, drain and serve, cutting into slices at the table.  Serve with   mashed potatoes, pork gravy and sauerkraut. Add a green salad and you have a authentic German Pfälzer Saumagen dinner.

Mac is crazy about saumagen....almost as much as he is crazy about me.
He gives it three thumbs up. Hmmmm....wonder if I'd get the first 4 thumbs up?


  1. I made the saumagen the other night as a going away dinner for my parents. I served it exactly as you suggested and everybody loved it! With your help I have prepared my first (successful) german meal. I look forward to trying more of your recipes.

  2. I am thrilled that you tried the recipe Vanessa. Now your parents can say they have had the same food Helmut Kohl served to his high profile guests!

  3. Why do you salt the water, if it's cooking in a plastic bag?