Tonight I was invited (along with Ian) to Kathi's parents house for käsespätzle. Käsespätzle is a Bavarian dish of doughy noodles and cheese (bacon for the meat-eaters as well.)
Not only were we invited to eat it, but also to learn how it is made and to help cook it! The dough is a basic recipe: flour, eggs, water, salt and cornmeal.
There are two different tools to form the spätzle - one looks like an oversized garlic press. That one makes longer, thinner noodles. The other looks more like an open cheese grater. It makes shorter, rounder noodles. That is the one we used.
To make the spätzle, one scrapes the dough through the "grater" into a pot of boiling water. Once the noodles float to the top then they are removed and put in a cold water bath.
Then they are washed til cool and left to sit. At this point the onions are browned and the bits of bacon are also cooked with the onions. The onions should be a deep golden brown color before they are removed from heat.
Afterwards, the spätzle is put back into the pan where the onions were cooked, and is reheated. Cheese (Bergkäse and Emmenthaler) is then melted on top until it's stringy.
Finally the meal is served - onions on a bed of spätzle! Delicious!
It's a lot of fun and one learns soo much cooking with someone from another culture. Sometimes it's the simplest trick, such as adding cold water to boiling water to keep it from boiling over!
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