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Oktoberfest Dinner

Updated on October 9, 2009

What is Oktoberfest?

Oktoberfest started in Munich, Germany in 1810 with the royal wedding of King Ludwig I, when he was married to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hidburghausen...... The citizens of Munich were invited to attend the festivities held on the fields in front of the city gates to celebrate the happy royal event. The fields were renamed Theresienwiese ("Theres'a Fields") to honor the Crown Princess, although the locals have since abbreviated the name simply to "Wiesn". Horse races in the presence of the royal family marked the close of the event that was celebrated as a festival for the whole of Bavaria. The decision to repeat the horse races in subsequent years gave rise to the tradition of Oktoberfest.(

Their 176th annual festival began September 19 of this year and ran until October 4. People are still celebrating Oktoberfest in the month of October and you can, too!

Baked Spareribs and Sauerkraut

The Food of Oktoberfest

The most popular food of Oktoberfest is sausage, knockwurst, bratwurst, sauerbraten, sauerkraut, spareribs, and of course, beer.

Anything sweet and sour usually qualifies. Pickled beets, red cabbage, cucumbers and onions in vinegar, German potato salad, will be acceptable.

I have picked a few recipes I think you will like.

Baked Spareribs and Sauerkraut for 12 (You can always halve the recipe for 6)

9 pounds spareribs

1 Tablespoon salt

1 teaspoon pepper

4 cans (1 lb. 11 oz. each approx.) sauerkraut and juice - 3 1/2 quarts

4 cups (about 1 1/2 pounds) diced green apples

1 Tablespoon caraway seed

1 teaspoon pepper

1 1/2 cups diced onions - about 1 pound

Cut spareribs into 2-3 rib pieces. Place in a large roasting pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in a hot oven (450 degrees F) for about 1/2 hour, turning occasionally, until ribs are browned.. Reduce heat to 350 degrees F. Cook 1 hour longer, uncovered. Remove from oven and drain off fat.

Add undiluted sauerkraut, apples, caraway seeds, pepper and onions to the ribs. Cover and return to oven. Continue roasting at 350 degrees F until ribs are tender and meat will slip easily from bones - about 1 hour longer. Turn occasionally. Add water, if necessary.

Lift ribs from pan and place on one side of hot platter. Place sauerkraut on other end. Serves 12.

Sweet-Sour Red Cabbage

1 head red cabbage - about 2 pounds

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup chopped onions

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

2 Tablespoons brown sugar

1 Tablespoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 cup water

2 3/4 cups sliced tart apples

1/2 teaspoon ginger (optional)

Shred the cabbage. Melt the butter in a heavy saucepan. Add onions and saute until lightly browned. Add the cabbage and remaining ingredients and mix lightly. Cover and simmer about 1 1/4 hours. Serves 10-12.


Spaetzle is a German dish consisting of lumps or threads made from a batter of flour, milk, eggs, and salt, usually poured through a coarse colander into boiling water, and then either drained and mixed in butter, lightly pan-fried, or added to sauces, stews, etc.....based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2009.

Amazon sells a spaetzle maker (see sidebar)

2 cups flour

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

2/3 cup milk

4 eggs

1/2 cup chopped onions

1/2 cup butter

Combine flour, salt, milk and eggs. Beat until bubbles form. Pour mixture slowly through a colander, held over a 4 quart saucepan of boiling salted water. Boil the spaetzle for 8 minutes.
Drain and rinse with cold water.

Brown onions in butter in a large skillet. Add spaetzle and stir until hot and mixed. Makes 8-10 servings.


2 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon cloves

1 teaspoon ginger

1/2 cup shortening

1/2 cup sugar

2 eggs, unbeaten

1 cup water

1 cup molasses

Maple Topping (recipe follows)

Combine flour, baking powder, salt, soda and spices. Cream shortening and sugar together until well-blended. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each.

Combine water and molasses. Add dry ingredients to the shortening mixture, alternately with the molasses mixture. Beat thoroughly. (It may not be smooth.)

Pour batter into greased 8 or 9 inch square pan. Bake 350 degrees F 35-45 minutes, or until done. Cool slightly Serve warm with Maple Topping.

Maple Topping

1 1/2 cups sour cream

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup maple syrup

Combine all ingredients, Chill. Serve as a sauce for gingerbread. Sprinkle with nutmeg.


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    • judydianne profile image

      judydianne 7 years ago from Palm Harbor, FL

      Papernotes, thank you so much. Hope you enjoy!!

    • PaperNotes profile image

      PaperNotes 7 years ago

      This is one delicious hub! I hope they would add another tab for delicious.

    • judydianne profile image

      judydianne 8 years ago from Palm Harbor, FL

      I know what you mean, rm. It's still hot in Florida, too. Can't wait for cooler weather.

    • rmcrayne profile image

      rmcrayne 8 years ago from San Antonio Texas

      I'd like to try the oven. It's coming up on the few months here in San Antonio where it's not blazing hot and oven use is feasible!

    • judydianne profile image

      judydianne 8 years ago from Palm Harbor, FL

      I have done ribs in the slow cooker, but I prefer the oven. This recipe is pretty foolproof and easy. The hardest part is turning them at intervals, which is pretty easy! Thanks RM for the comment.

    • rmcrayne profile image

      rmcrayne 8 years ago from San Antonio Texas

      I never tried to cook ribs of any kind. Just seemed too complicated. Yours don't sound too scary. I've only bought German Kraut since living there. The texture is superior, and it's a good value because the jars are tightly packed, so it goes further than you'd think.

    • maven101 profile image

      maven101 8 years ago from Northern Arizona


    • judydianne profile image

      judydianne 8 years ago from Palm Harbor, FL

      Thanks, Larry. I tried to find a video with a polka dance on it and the ones I found were unusual. My dad and I used to polka when he was younger. Your recipe sounds yummy! Auf Wiedersehen!.....Judy

    • maven101 profile image

      maven101 8 years ago from Northern Arizona

      Very interesting Hub...I love the dancing during polkas, waltzes, and communal singing...I make the cabbage with bacon and chix stock, and all the other ingredients...thanks for the history lesson...again, my two favorite subjects,; history and food!!

      Hinunter Schlingen...Larry