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February 25, 2009

Sauerkraut: Intelligent Life on Earth


There are people whose first thought about sauerkraut is this: “Can it be considered life?”


The answer is: “Yes, there can be no denying that sauerkraut is its own form of life.” The reasons are fairly straightforward. When you try to take your first bite of sauerkraut, you will learn that it will try to bite you back. If this doesn’t describe life, then all definitions of life are without meaning.


How this form of life came into existence is perhaps something best left to other authorities.


It is also true that kielbasa is also life. The reason for this is that there is at work in kielbasa a very easily recognizable intelligence. If you look at a kielbasa and this intelligence is not evident then the problem is yours. Do not blame your own shortcomings on intelligent processed meat.


The two – kielbasa and sauerkraut – have a symbiotic relationship. Each gains from the other. That is why you find them so often together. They are as closely linked as Fred and Ginger, or even Bert and Ernie.


What the two get from each other is a matter of long conjecture. Questions have been asked, but both food items have so far proven smart enough to keep their motivations to themselves. You can try this out at home by posing the questions yourself. Ask, and there will be silence. Ask again, and you will again be greeted by silence. Ask a third time, and you begin to feel outmatched by food. If this is not a sign of advanced intelligence, then how we determine evidence is today deeply flawed.


Begin the union of the two by cutting the kielbasa into half-inch chunks. Do not worry about destroying an intelligence that we do not understand. It is presumed that the kielbasa’s intelligence is so advanced that it is decentralized throughout its body. Besides, it is a well-established fact that a chopped-apart kielbasa will spawn new kielbasas from the requisite chunks. Were it not such a tasty food, you could open a kielbasa ranch.


Throw these into some heated oil with some garlic, onion and green pepper. If you have the top – the scape – use this, for it will add some flavor. Cook these, and the kielbasa will release some of the stored fats and juices into the bottom of the pan.


When those are soft, add a bag’s worth of sauerkraut, diced potatoes and sliced up carrots and celery. Top with enough chicken broth or water to cover things.


Now comes the hard part, which is waiting for the water to cook down and the potatoes to soften. Go read a book. Take a nap. Learn to speak a different language. Self improvement is the hardest work of all.


Return to your stew. It should be thick, and the vegetables mostly tender. It is ready to eat.


Perhaps you now feel like asking sauerkraut and kielbasa how both have advanced so far. Listen. You will hear only the sound of silence. Smart foods, they.


© 2009 North Star Writers Group. May not be republished without permission.


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