This past Wednesday, we had Austria Night. We have previously “visited” 26 countries – at least one per continent, not including Antarctica.
To find out what Austrian fare was like, I used the powers of the Internet. This is what I found.
Apparently, Austria is a very meaty place. Finding recipes took me a little longer than it does with other countries. I ended up settling on a menu of Cherry Soup, Cabbage and Apple Saute, Kase Spaetzel, and Sacher Torte.
The cherry soup did not really specify as to whether it was to be served cold or hot. I made it the night before and tried it hot – it tasted like pie filling. Which is delicious, don’t get me wrong, but pretty weird for a soup. So, I decided to serve it cold. It was a good choice.
The cherry soup was three for four. My husband didn’t care for it, but my mom, grandma, and I thought it was delicious. It still had a taste reminiscent of pie filling, but it was more refreshing cold. I used this recipe for the soup:
I added about 2 tablespoons of lemon juice to the water to give the soup more of a kick. For the wine, I used Chianti. I served it out in scant 1 cup servings. It looked like there were about 6-8 servings.
The cabbage-apple saute felt like a healthy version of halushki. Everyone liked this dish. However, the recipe I used must have assumed that you were eating a ton of the stuff. It said it only made 6 servings, but it really made about twelve 1.5 cup servings.
Here is the recipe I used:
1/4 cup of olive oil sounded a bit too decadent for my tastes, so I just used about 2 tablespoons. Also, I used the whole cabbage (except for the hard core), but the white parts of the cabbage didn’t really get soft enough, so next time, I’m going to either shred the white parts, or just not use them in this dish.
Our main dish, which was my favorite, was kase spaetzel. It tasted a lot like home made pierogies without the potatoes. The recipe I used said it was two servings, but I got four servings out of it easily. Each serving ended up being about one cup.
I used this recipe
The dough was very difficult to work with. I ended up using about an extra half cup to a cup of flour just to get the dough to the point where it didn’t stick to everything it touched. I also don’t really see how the colander idea could work out, so I do not recommend that you try. I patted the dough out into a big rectangle on a floured cutting board, and cut the dough into strips that were about 1 inch long and half an inch thick. I then dropped the dough into the boiling water as directed and pulled them out when they floated (this took about 1 minute). I drained the pan, put the butter in as directed, and tossed the noodles with the butter. I chose to add the cheese after the noodles were in the serving dishes to prevent making a mess out of my pan and to prevent wasting my delicious Gruyere.
I served all of this with a deliciously crisp Austrian Riesling that was kindly recommended by the Wines and Spirits employees at Camp Horne Giant Eagle.
To finish off the dinner (and to use some of my 10 pound bar of chocolate), I made a Sacher Torte. I used a recipe from The Chocolate and Coffee Bible”.
Basically, you beat together butter and sugar till they are light and fluffy, then you add egg yolks one at a time, followed by flour, and melted bittersweet chocolate. You then add beaten egg whites and bake the cake. After the cake is baked and cooled, you glaze with an apricot glaze, and then you cover the cake with chocolate ganache.
By themselves, these recipes are all pretty fast. If you serve it as one big meal, I would highly recommend making the cake and soup the day before, and then the other two dishes the day of the meal. Happy cooking!