Thursday, October 21, 2010

Hands On - Spaetzle

This post is dedicated to my brother Marty, who has lived in Germany for over a quarter century and does not own a spaetzle maker, let alone make spaetzle at home.  Marty and Ellen - go get yourself a spaetzle maker and have some fun.  Ya!

Spaetzle (spay-tsul) are really just German pasta - little chewy dumplings that can be used in soup or just as you would pasta.  Add cheese sauce or simply toss with grated cheese and a little butter.  Or serve with a tomato sauce.  Or mix in sauteed shallots and blanched swiss chard and blue cheese like I did yesterday.  Or saute some cabbage and onion in a little bacon fat and add that to the spaetzle.  Or just serve plain, with a little butter, right next to some weiner schnitzel and red cabbage.  The possibilities are endless.

Once you have a pot of water boiling, you can make spaetzle just as fast as boxed mac and cheese.  Once I remove the cooked dumplings, I still have a pot of boiling water.  That is a good opportunity to blanch a few vegetables that you might have around.  You can use those with your spaetzle or save for another dish.  Energy saver.  I like that.

You can buy a perfectly fine spaetzle maker for about ten bucks.  Here is a link if you want to look online for one.

All you need is flour (I used a white whole wheat flour today), eggs, a little salt and a little milk.  I also like to add a pinch of nutmeg.  For two cups of spaetzle you will need:
1 cup flour
2 eggs
1/4 cup milk
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. nutmeg (optional)
Beat eggs.  Add milk and salt and nutmeg if desired.  Stir in flour thoroughly.  Dough will be soft and wet.  Scrape into a spaetzle maker.  Cook spaetzle in gently boiling water.  They will rise to the top when done - I like to cook an extra minute or two afer they rise.  If you have a big pot you can cook this amount of dough at one time.  Scoop cooked dumplings out of the water with a slotted spoon or strainer.  Put spaetzle into a bowl or pan with just a teaspoon of butter or oil to prevent sticking.  Use right away or refrigerate until needed.

Here are pictures of the steps I follow:
You don't need much equipment to make spaetzle

Scraping wet dough into spaetzle maker,  It can rest on the top of the pot.

I'm only holding this high so you can see what magic happens underneath the spaetzle maker when you slide the little box back and forth

See how fast the dumplings rise to the top?

I added some blanched sliced chard leaves, sauteed shallots and some blue cheese.  This is going to be our lunch.

No comments:

Post a Comment