Sunday, September 25, 2016

Monday, September 12, 2016

September Family Dinners

Back to school time!

Oriecchiette with roasted eggplant and summer squash (from the garden) and a little garden kale, with sauteed chicken on the side or black beans on the side.  Mozzarella melted on top, so I could peel the cheese back and avoid it.  We ate leftovers as dinner the following two days.

I made a rectangular wheat crust pizza on the Silpat, pepperoni on once side, sauteed mushrooms on the other.

We tried Archie's Grill.  Everyone liked it, but not as much as I did, yum.  We all overate and were uncomfortable.

Annual Spatzle in vegetarian gravy.  Served with slice of nitrate-free turkey from deli, as if ramen.  I served the worse green salad in the world as a side.

Spaghetti Squash with kale and onion in marinara sauce
Ground hamburger and black beans served on side as protein condiment
cheddar cheese biscuits

Greek Chicken
Roasted Cauliflower

Went to mall to look at watches, got back too late to make dinner.  Told everyone to make PB&J with the whole wheat bread I picked up at the bakery, and headed out on more errands.

Sunday, September 11, 2016


For my daughter's birthday, I'm republishing this old post on the Spaetzle we're making tonight.


Fifteen years ago, my neighbor, who was a great cook, invited me over for dinner. She had made homemade spätzle with a spätzle maker she'd found in a yard sale during a visit to her home state. The maker looked like a cheese grater with a shuttle across the top of it. I was delighted when she demonstrated it: the dough drops through the holes as the shuttle scrapes over them, dropping drippings of spatzle dough right into the boiling water. How clever; how sensible!

Spätzle fascinates me. I classify it as a homemade pasta or egg noodle, and I love that there's no running the dough through a pasta maker several times to make it smooth, and no figuring out where to hang the pasta to dry. But there's still enough effort involved that it feels like a homemade food project, a bit of an adventure, a bit celebratory.

I've been wanting to make spätzle for years since, so on my recent trip to Austria I purchased a spätzle maker of my own. It has a curved surface with holes, and a rubber scraper for pushing the dough over them. It's wide enough to rest over any of my boiling water pots. I understand you can substitute a large-holed colander for a spatzle maker, but I've never tried.

The recipe I used: 500 g flour, 6 eggs, 150ml water, teaspoon of salt. I let my stand mixer do the work.

  • 500 g flour
  • 6 eggs
  • 150ml water ( 1 2/3 cup water)
  • 1 teaspoon salt

I brought a potful of water to boil, adding salt and oil.

I put a big scoop of dough on the spätzle maker. I could tell the consistency was right because it drooped through the holes but didn't fall or run out. I scraped back and forth which forced the dough out. The spätzle that floated was done; I pulled it out with my mesh kitchen sieve.

Now, what to serve with it? Spätzle is a German food I associate with chunks of meat and gravy. Yet like egg noodles, it's good with butter and a little salt. I made a simple mushroom cream sauce by sautéing chopped onion and finely diced mushroom (used food processor to chop) and then adding some cream and cooking it a bit more. Add a side salad, and we had a delicious dinner tonight.