G is for Germany: Sauerbraten and Spaetzle

So, I know there are no pictures here.  After about three weeks of fighting with my camera and SD card and computer, I’ve decided to cut my losses.  This will be a blind post.  You’ll have to use your imagination.  You know what beef looks like, right?  And noodles?  And a crockpot and boiling water?  Good.  See, we don’t need those stinkin’ pictures anyway.  But I digress.

I was quite excited when I got the letter G.  After France, I figured I’d end up with something like Ghana.  But nope, fortunately I was able to pull another country whose cuisine I’m familiar with.  I wanted something traditional, but also relatively simple the day of serving — the fiance and I had Pre-Cana, and I knew I wouldn’t have hours to dedicate to an intricate meal.  This crockpot sauerbraten ended up being the perfect thing!  But I couldn’t just serve meat and gravy.  So, instead, I turned to spaetzle.  Back when I was a gluten-eater, I would devour this stuff.  And yet, I hadn’t had it in three years.  My cousin sent me a gluten-free recipe for spaetzle and together with my sister and fiance managed to make a big bowl of it.  It was messy and sticky, but it turned out to be delicious.  Enjoy this brief (albeit belated and blind) trip to Germany, and prepare yourself for more regular and illustrated posts!!

Sauerbraten

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup red wine vinegar
  • ¾ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 12 cloves
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp white sugar
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 15 – 20 baby carrots
  • 3 ½ lb rump roast
  • 10 gingersnap cookies
  1. Combine first seven ingredients (red wine vinegar through sugar) in a microwave safe bowl (I used a four cup measuring cup) and whisk together.  Microwave for a minute until the mixture is heated through, and whisk again, making sure the salt and sugar are dissolved into the marinade.
  2. In a large bowl, place about half of the copped veggies on the bottom, topped with the meat, and then the rest of the vegetables.  Scatter the bay leaves in there and pour the marinade over the meat.  Cover, shake, and refrigerate for 2-3 days, turning meat over periodically.
  3. Remove the meat from the marinade (reserve the marinade!!), dry it, and brown it on all sides.  Place it in the crockpot, pour the reserved marinade over it, and set the crockpot on low for six-eight hours.
  4. Once the meat is done, remove it from the crockpot and strain the remaining marinade into a small stockpot.  Over medium heat, cook the marinade and the crushed cookies until the mixture is thickened (about ten minutes).  Slice the meat after it has rested, and serve with the gravy.

Spaetzle

Adapted from http://poorandglutenfree.blogspot.com/2012/04/gluten-free-spaetzle.html

Ingredients

  • ½ cup potato starch
  • 2 1/8 cup white rice flour
  • ½ cup sweet rice flour
  • 1 c tapioca flour
  • 1 ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • ½ cup water, plus more as needed
  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil.
  2. Sift the dry ingredients together, then mix in the eggs.
  3. Slowly add water, until the batter begins to form ribbons.  You’ll need a decent amount of water, but you don’t want it to be overly thin and runny.
  4. Using a colander (and a friend or two), press the batter into the salted boiling water (this will be sticky and messy, but trust me it’s worth it).  Be careful not to over crowd the pot.  After a minute or two, the noodles will begin to float.  At this point, rescue them from the water using a slotted spoon.  Continue this process until all of the batter has been used.
  5. Toss the warm spaetzle with some butter and/or pour some of the gravy over it.  Yes, it did have a slight gluten-free taste to it, but the texture was there and after three years it was great to have spaetzle again!!
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2 thoughts on “G is for Germany: Sauerbraten and Spaetzle

  1. Pingback: L is for Luxembourg: Coq au Riesling | Quinoa and Cookies

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