As we all recover from the busy holiday season, and start looking for fun projects to fill those dark winter evenings, why not try some new side dish ideas?. While most have a pretty solid recipe for Grandmas classic stew, people often get stuck with what to put with it. If you haven’t tried the spaetzle as a starchy accompaniment you are defiantly missing out! Not only does this boiled egg noodle go great with saucy dishes like stews and goulashes, it’s also a traditional side dish for schnitzel. Some bake it, some fry it, some serve it straight out of the pot, but whatever you choose to do, spaetzle is definitely worth some attention!
Basic Spaetzle (adapted from chef Michael Smith)
1 cup all purpose flour
½ tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
1 large eggs
½ cup milk
A pinch pepper
A pinch of fresh ground nutmeg
1 tbsp butter
In a small bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. In a second bowl, whisk together the eggs and milk. Stir the two together with a wooden spoon to make a sticky batter. Let the batter rest for 15 minutes allowing the elastic gluten to relax. Ready a large pot of boiling salted water. Using spaetzle maker, or cheese grater, force the batter through the holes into the boiling water. The batter will sink, and then rise to the top when cooked through, about a minute. Remove with a strainer or slotted spoon and transfer to a frypan with melted butter. Fry until some of the spaetzle is lightly brown.
If you’re making spaetzle for a crowd, go ahead and make it the day before! Simply cook the spaetzle normally, but instead of frying in butter, toss lightly in a bit of olive oil (to prevent sticking when the spaetzle cools) and refrigerate in a tightly sealed container.
If you want to take spaetzle a step further, try tossing the cooked noodles with a bit of cream, your favourite cheese, and some caramelized onions. Bake in a greased casserole dish at 375 F until the top gets a bit brown and your cheese is melted. Look out, this is deadly delicious!
Tools to help with this recipe:
There are a few makers on the market, the most popular at the Compleat cook is the “cheese grater style” Mainly for it’s sturdy construction and ease of cleaning.