Thursday, September 1, 2011

Gesundheit and Spaetzle! Look how German I am...

You ever get in a spaetzle-type mood? The kinda mood where nothing will satisfy but a nice plate of spaetzle?! Well, neither have I. I didn't even really know what it was until I ran into a recipe by Guy Fieri on the other day. Naturally, I proceeded overwhelm myself with spazt-y info. Turns out-for those who are not enlightened in the Deutschland way of doing things-spaetzle is a dish of very simple egg noodles. They're served countless ways and can be thin noodles, or thicker dumplings. The noodles are easiest to make with a "spaetzle-maker" that presses the dough through narrow holes into the boiling water-resulting in a thin noodle after they're boiled. Well of course everyone shooould have a spaetzle-maker..? Unfortunately, I couldn't seem to find mine...So I went with the dumpling method! I McGrubered a pastry bag out of a ziplock bag, by cutting a hole in the corner of the bag-then put the batter in the bag and squeezed it out a little at a time into the boiling water. This is great as a side dish and would really complement red meat. I ate it as a main dish, next time I'll want to add some caramelized onions, but it was very tasty! Anyway...down to the nitty gritty...

Givin' Spaetzle a Go... 
4 servings as a side, 2 as a main dish

       1 1/2c All Purpose Flour
      5 large eggs
      1/4c milk
      1/2 tsp cumin
      2c chicken broth
      2 Tbsp butter
      1 clove garlic, minced
      1c shredded parmesan cheese
      freshly ground black pepper 

In a medium bowl, combine flour, 3 eggs (beaten), milk, and cumin to make a thick batter. Place about 1/2c of batter into ziploc bag and snip off a corner, or use a pastry bag.

Prepare a medium bowl full of ice water to hold dumplings after they have cooked.

Bring chicken broth and 2c water to a boil in saucepan over high heat. When boiling, begin dropping batter into the hot water-each dumpling should be about 1" long. Cook each batch of dumplings for 2-3 min, until the spaetzle are floating. After they are cooked, transfer the dumplings to the ice water bath.

Heat butter in large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the spaetzle and cook, stirring occasionally until they begin to brown, 3-5 min. Reduce heat to low. Beat the remaining two eggs and add them to the spaetzle along with the Parmesan cheese. Stir and heat until the eggs are set, 2-3 min. Season with pepper. Serve immediately.

A simple saute of egg dumplings, butter, garlic, and Parmesan cheese - I'd call it comfort food in any language!