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Spätzle (or Spaetzle if you don't have the umlaut) are rich fresh egg noodles and are a traditional dish of southern Germany. They make a very nice side dish and are also the main ingredient of "Käsespätzle" (a casserole of Spätzle with cheese and onions).
- 1lb 2oz / 500g flour
- 5 eggs
- 2 tsp salt
- 2/3 - 3/4 cups / 150-180ml water
- pinch of nutmeg
- Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl, start with 2/3 cups / 150ml of water.
- Beat well with a dough hook until the dough becomes smooth and elastic. Add water as needed. The dough should as soft as possible but firm enough to stick to a spoon.
- In a large pot (at least 4 quart / 4l) bring water to a boil. Salt lightly (ca. 2-3 tsp salt).
- There are multiple methods to make the Spätzle, just choose one of the following:
- The traditional method of scraping the dough off a cutting board: With a spatula spread out a ½in / 1cm thick layer of dough on a small cutting board. Then scrape off small strings of dough right into the boiling water. Make sure to keep your equipment wet.
- Push through a colander: Put some dough in a colander. Set above the boiling water and use a spoon to push the dough through the holes.
- Using a "Spätzle-Press", a kind of sturdy potato ricer: Fill the press, press short strands of dough into the boiling water.
- Boil until the Spätzle float (ca. 1 minute) then for an additional minute or two. Skim off with a slotted spoon and place them in a colander. Rinse with warm water so that the Spätzle don't become a sticky mess.
- Repeat previous steps until no dough is left.
- Spätzle can be prepared in advance and heated up just before serving: Make sure you rinsed them well after cooking. Then place in a buttered pot or bowl, top with butter, cover and refrigerate. Reheat on the stovetop over low heat or in the microwave oven.
- The Spätzle in the photo are topped with breadcrumbs browned in butter.
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