Five years ago, I went to Germany to visit family I had never met before. We had all sorts of traditional dishes (including a dish that I want to try to replicate once we get the ingredients in line,) but spaetzle was never on the menu. As an ode to my German heritage, I'll be serving up this tasty dish, served in a not-so traditional way.
The Recipe: Fresh Herb Spaetzle
Original Recipe Found In: www.epicurious.com
What You'll Need:
For the Spaetzle:
2 1/4 Cups All Purpose Flour
1 Teaspoon Salt
1/4 Teaspoon Ground White Pepper
1/8 Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
3 Large Eggs
3/4 Cup Whole Milk
8 Teaspoons minced assorted fresh herbs (such as parsley, thyme, rosemary, and chives), divided
For the Serving "Sauce":
4 Tablespoons Butter, divided
2 Tablespoons extra-virgin Olive Oil, divided
8 Ounces Mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 medium Onion, chopped
3/4 Cup low sodium Chicken Broth
To start, mix the dry ingredients (flour, salt, pepper, and nutmeg) in a large bowl. Slowly whisk in the eggs and milk to make a batter. The batter will be really thick, so be sure to hit the whisk on the side of the bowl to release any batter that gets stuck in the whisk. To loosen the batter, I also added a 1/4 cup of whole milk to make it not so thick. The batter will look somewhat "eggy", but this is how it's supposed to look. After the batter is thoroughly mixed, mix in half of the herbs, stirring well again to incorporate.
|Spaetzle batter...doesn't photograph well...|
While preparing the batter, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Also, prepare another large bowl with butter by rubbing a tablespoon of butter inside the bowl. This will be essential later to help keep the spaetzle "noodles" from sticking together. Once the pot of water is at a boil, start to make the spaetzle. This is a very unique process, one that I have never used before. Using small portions of the batter, press the batter through a cheese grater, strainer, or a wide ladle, anything that has 1/4 inch holes. Press the batter directly into the boiling water with a rubber spatula (or, if you don't mind getting messy, your hands can be a great tool too!) The instant the spaetzle hits the boiling water, they will begin to cook. Stir the spaetzle to separate and boil for two minutes. After they are done cooking, use a fine sieve to scoop it from the pot, drain well, and transfer to the prepared buttered bowl.
|And the finished cooked spaetzle|
Next, heat a large skillet over medium high heat and melt two tablespoons of butter and one tablespoon of oil. Add the mushrooms and sauté until they begin to soften, about four minutes. After the mushrooms cook, add the onion and sauté until become translucent, about five minutes. Add the remaining two tablespoons of butter, 1 tablespoon of oil, and the spaetzle. Saute this mixture until the spaetzle begins to brown, about 10 minutes. Make sure to stir this combination often so the spaetzle doesn't stick to the skillet. Add the chicken broth to the skillet. Simmer until the broth is absorbed by all the ingredients. Add more broth if the mixture is too dry. Mix in the remaining herbs, serve and enjoy!
The End Result:
The classic combination of sautéed mushrooms and onions never goes wrong in my book. For this to be a base for the spaetzle to cook in just added a new degree of deliciousness. The spaetzle almost formed little balls of pasta that cooked in a flash. The herbs made them very savory and very fresh, coming off the palate cleanly. Even though the recipe has simple ingredients, the method behind the spaetzle is completely unique and something completely different for me. The best part of this recipe was combining all the ingredients in at the end and made for one fantastic dish. I would definitely try this dish again.
Thanks for joining us this week. Join us next week for new culinary adventures. Until then,