Kramarczuk's gummi bear brats: the taste test
After hearing about a Hugo, Minnesota, meat market that started making gummi bear bratwurst, Orest Kramarczuk decided to make a 25-pound test batch at his own sausage shop, Kramarczuk's in NE Minneapolis.
The Hot Dish picked one up for a taste test. Check out what it looks like:
Where there used to be gummi bears, now there are just sticky splotches.
It was raining outside, so we decided to brown the pre-cooked wurst on the stove (along with several "original" brats, as backup). The trouble with pan cooking the curved tubesteaks is that it's tough to get the concave and convex sides to get any Maillard reaction action. We tried the half-catamaran technique pictured above--anybody have a method that cooks all sides evenly?
We anticipated the bears might stay chewy through the cooking process, but the heat melted them to liquid (one leaked sugary goo that burned to the pan). Our gummi brat contained the remains of three bears--three synthetic sweet splotches.
Bits of real cherry in bratwurst might be good, but this was fake-tasting, Kool-Aid burst ... and not in a good way. We quickly abandoned the gummi brat in favor of the traditional ones. On the plus side, we finally learned the flavor of "clear" gummi bears. Something tropical ... was it coconut, aloe? Aha, pineapple!
If you want to try the gummi brats, act fast. Last we checked, there were only a few pounds left, and the Kramarczuk's staff indicated it was unlikely they'd make more.
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