German Kasseler: A Cured and Smoked Pork Loin

German Kasseler: A Cured and Smoked Pork Loin

Cured and smoked meat is a tradition in German cuisine and is often served with sauerkraut and kale. Make Kasseler, or smoked pork, with this recipe.
  • Preparation:
  • Cooking:
  • Total:
  • Serves: 8 persons



  1. Step 1

    Gather the ingredients.
  2. Step 2

    Stir together the ingredients for the brine and heat to a simmer to dissolve all the salt and sugar. Refrigerate until completely cold.
  3. Step 3

    Prepare the loin by removing all but a thin layer of fat. We recommend a loin , not a rib roast (back ribs attached — common in commercial "Kasseler") for home processing.
  4. Step 4

    Place the loin in the brine and weight it down with a plate or other object to keep it submerged.
  5. Step 5

    Refrigerate for 48 hours.
  6. Step 6

    Remove the loin from the brine. Discard brine.
  7. Step 7

    Wash off the pork with cold water and pat dry. You may dry it in the refrigerator for up to a day (do not cover with any wrap).
  8. Step 8

    Prepare your smoker: Start your charcoal fire in the bottom of the smoker an hour before you want to smoke the meat.
  9. Step 9

    Soak 2 cups (or so) wood chips (preferably alder for this project) in some water.
  10. Step 10

    Place your smoking tray (or aluminum foil tray) on top of the charcoal and add 1/2 cup wet wood chips. Place the grill about a foot above that.
  11. Step 11

    Place the meat on the grill, cover and smoke 2 to 3 hours, until the internal temperature is 150 F or above. Add more wet chips as needed to keep the smoke up.
  12. Step 12

    You may choose to roast the brined meat instead, or if you are having trouble with the smoker just bring it inside and finish the cooking process in the oven. Heat the oven to 450 F and cook the meat for 10 minutes. Lower the temperature to 250 F and roast the meat for 2 to 3 hours, until the internal temperature reaches 150 F.
  13. Step 13

    Eat warm or cut and wrap. Refrigerate to 4 days or freeze for 2 to 3 months.