Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Grandma Lally's Spaetzles

My daughter is 8 years old. She LOVES these little Bavarian dumplings. How could just a few simple ingredients yield such delight? I don't know. But I do know I loved these dumplings too. My mom made these as her mother did before her, and probably her mother before her. I don't think my mom even used a recipe. She just made the dough and dropped it with a spoon into boiling water. After a few minutes of boiling them, the spaetzles were drained and browned in melted butter with chopped onions. A little salt and that's all. It was truly one of my favorite childhood meals and my best childhood memories. We fought over the biggest ones. I have such happy memories of meals such as this. My recipe is a simple one. I hope you enjoy it. I use a spaetzle maker to produce the tiny, even shapes. But you can use a spoon, which I have done myself many times too. These are also great for dumplings in chicken soup. Just drop into the boiling soup and cook for a bit to make sure they are done. Delicious. 

Grandma Lally's Spaetzle
4 eggs beaten by hand
2 cups flour
1/2 cup cold water
1/2 tsp salt
dash of pepper or allspice* (which is what I use)
1 T butter
Put a large kettle of water on to boil. Salt the water. Mix eggs, flour, cold water, and seasoning. Dough is thick but soft. Drop with a spoon. (Or you can use the spaetzle maker by spooning dough into grater section and sliding it back and forth as small pieces of dough fall into the water.) Cook only a couple of minutes until the spaetzles rise to the top. Drain. Stir in 1 T. butter to keep from sticking and sprinkle with a little salt.

You may brown spaetzle in a skillet with butter. Or you can serve them with buttered onions to spoon on top:
1 stick of butter
1 large onion, chopped 
Saute onion in butter until the onion is very soft. Spoon over spaetzle when serving and salt to taste.

These go great with sauerkraut and brats or ring bologna sausage. Very simple but comforting food from my Grandma Lally.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

S'more Brownie Bars

S'mores always remind me of camping and good times with family. (And Seinfeld, remember s'mores and s'stupid?) I was noodling on a way to combine brownies and the great taste of s'mores without a campfire.Sure you could stir marshmallow and crushed graham crackers into your brownie mix, but that would be missing some pizazz. So I thought let's combine the graham crust of my favorite bars with yummy brownies. Now that sounds more like it!! I had to cook the brownies a bit longer than the box recommended so plan for 40-45 minutes, adding the marshmallows after about 35 minutes of baking. Here's the recipe I came up with, I hope you like it.

S'more Brownie Bars
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup melted butter
1/4 cup sugar
1 box of brownie mix for 9x13 pan
1 cup of chocolate bars broken into squares (about 2 regular size Hershey bars)
1 cup mini marshmallows (I use a cup of large marshmallows cut into small pieces so the graham crumbs stick to them)
1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine graham cracker crumbs, butter, sugar. Press into bottom of 9x13 greased aluminum pan. Prepare brownie mix according to directions. Spoon on top of graham crust. Bake 30 minutes. Sprinkle with chocolate, marshmallows and graham crumbs. Bake 5 minutes until marshmallows are golden and the brownies are completely cooked. Hit with the broiler for a minute or two if you like your s'mores a little burnt.