Yep, spaetzle. A soft egg noodle/dumpling kinda thing that is really dead simple to toss together and really very, very tasty.
I saw Anne Burrell make a batch earlier this fall on a cooking show and it looked like a fun thing to try, so I added a spaetzle maker to my wish list, and my very favorite sister thoughtfully go it for me for my birthday. For the record, though, you don’t need a spaetzel maker to make spaetzel.
You could just use a metal colander and push the dough through the holes into boiling water or stock.
But, where’s the fun of that?
Really, the spaetzle maker is pretty inexpensive, dishwasher safe, and works a treat, so why not get one?
This recipe, with a mustard cream sauce and ham steak, is from Emeril.
•1 cup milk
•1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
•Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper
•3 cups all-purpose flour, or as needed
•2 tbsp butter
•1 (1 1/2-pound) ham steak
•1-1/2 cup heavy cream
•2 tbsp whole-grain mustard
For the the spaetzle; whisk the eggs together with the milk, nutmeg, salt, and pepper in a mixing bowl.
Gradually stir in enough flour to make a thick batter. More than likely, you won’t need all three cups; my batter was nice after 2-3/4 cups.
Set your spaetzle maker or metal colander over a pot of boiling, salted water (stock would work, too) and press the spaetzle batter directly into water.
Emeril noted that the spaetzle will float to the surface of the pot when cooked through, after about five minutes. Mine felt like they cooked a lot faster than that, and I was concerned I was pulling ’em out of the water too soon, but they turned out perfect. Scoop up with a slotted spoon and drain well as the spaetzle rise to the top.
I kept mine in a colander as I prepared the ham and the mustard cream sauce.
Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
Sauté the ham steak until heated through and browned, three minutes per side. Transfer to a platter and keep warm in a 200º oven while you make the sauce.
Add heavy cream to the pan (still over medium heat) and cook for three minutes, until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
Stir in the mustard and simmer for one minute more.
Reduce the heat to low, and the cooked spaetzle to the pot, and toss to coat in the mustard sauce. Keep over low heat, stirring often, just until heated through.
Serve the spaetzle over the ham steak with some freshly chopped parsley scattered over the top.
I added a tossed salad on the side and we were both well pleased with dinner.
I just need to find some more spaetzle recipes to try out…