Saturday, December 13, 2008

Garlic Dumplings with Emmentaler (Käsespätzle)

Spätzle means little sparrows in German.

Serves 4.

2 heads of garlic
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1⁄2 cup milk
1⁄4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf
parsley leaves
1⁄4 cup finely chopped basil leaves
6 tbsp. unsalted butter
1⁄4 tsp. kosher salt
3 eggs, beaten
2 cups flour
1 cup grated emmentaler cheese

1. Heat oven to 450°. Halve garlic crosswise with a knife and brush with olive oil; wrap with foil. Roast until soft, 1 hour. Let cool and squeeze roasted garlic cloves from their skins into a bowl; mash with a fork to a paste.

2. Melt 2 tbsp. of the butter and add to paste. Then add milk, parsley, basil, salt, and eggs; stir until smooth.

3. Put flour into a large bowl; form a well in center. Slowly pour in the garlic–milk mixture, stirring with a fork to form a smooth batter.

4. Bring a 5-qt. saucepan of salted water to a boil over high heat. Set a perforated spätzle-making disk over the pot. Working in batches, scrape batter through holes into water. Cook until dumplings rise to surface, about 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, transfer dumplings to a baking sheet.

5. Heat remaining 4 tbsp. of butter in a 12" ovenproof skillet over high heat. Add dumplings; cook, stirring, until lightly browned, 6–8 minutes. Meanwhile, heat broiler; put rack 5" from heating element. Sprinkle dumplings with cheese; broil until melted, about 2 minutes.

Personal Note: Apparently this isn't actually käsespätzle. I'm not sure I'll make my spaetzle using this recipe; I have my own, and it works pretty well. But I was interested in collecting recipes for it that include other flavors. Mine are plain, with just butter.

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