Ok, so we’re not having a real winter here in Michigan. Hardly any snow, daytime temps in the 40’s and the plants and animals keep thinking spring is on the way. That is no reason not to love a hearty, carb-loaded dinner, is it? Herewith I present one of my all-time favorite pasta dishes: German-Austrian-Hungarian Spaetzle! It’s claimed by many cultures, and loved by all. And this recipe (courtesy of a great Austrian food blogger, Ellja of 2 steps away from paradise) is the bomb! Have to have it tonight!
The best part? It’s really easy, especially since I translated the recipe for you:
Ingredients for Spaetzle noodles:
250 g or 1 cup all-purpose Flour
1/2 Tbsp. Salt
ca. 150 ml or 1/2 Cup warm Water
Mix all ingredients together into a sticky mass. Dough should be very stiff. Put a large pot of water on to boil, adding 1 tsp of salt to the water. When the water is boiling hard, take the noodle dough over to the pot and either pinch off small pieces of dough with wet fingers (so that they don’t stick to the dough), or if you have a rigid pot scraping tool, use that to cut off small elongated pieces of dough. Wet the pot scraper in a bowl of water to prevent it sticking to the dough. Boil the spaetzle 1 – 2 minutes, or until they are floating. Strain them out into a colander, and rinse them very briefly to keep them loose from one another.
2 large onions
Couple slices of thick-cut bacon, cut into cubes
5 ounces or so of your favorite aged goat cheese, grated. I would take Raclette for this or goat Gouda if you can get it.
Mince the onions and brown them in butter and olive oil until well-caramelized. Add the bacon cubes and keep browning until they are rendered down. Now toss the Spaetzle with the onion-bacon-butter mixture, pour into a buttered casserole and top with the grated cheese. Slide into a 350 degree oven for 15 – 20 minutes. If you like the top extra-crispy, broil for the last minute or so. Top with a couple grinds of pepper. Can’t be beat!