We can’t ignore Germany. They have had a real presence at the Olympics. Plus their food is good. Today we will do a twist on the traditional German meal of Kraut, Spaetzle und Saiten (Kraut, Noodles and Sausage). A little about German Olympic history first.
Including the Winter Games of 2010, German athletes have won 1618 medals : 528 gold, 542 silver and 548 bronze. Of course, there is a lot of story there. German athletes have taken part in most of the Olympic Games since the first modern Games in 1896. Germany has hosted three Olympic Games, in 1936 both the Winter and Summer Games, and the 1972 Summer Olympics. In addition, Germany had been selected to host the 1916 Summer Olympics as well as the 1940 Winter Olympics, both of which had to be cancelled due to World Wars. After these wars, Germans were banned from participating in 1920, 1924 and 1948. While the country was divided, each of the two German states boycotted the Summer Games: in 1980 West Germany was one of 65 nations which did not go to Moscow in protest at the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and in 1984 East Germany joined the Soviet Union (and several others) in the boycott of the Summer Games in Los Angeles.
Texas has a big contention of German immigrants celebrated in the Texas Hill Country, most notably in New Braunfels and Fredericksburg. Fredericksburg has some great German restaurants and sausage makers. I am going to use Opa’s Sausage today.
This is one of my favorite fall meals served with a dark rye bread and apple strudel for dessert. For an appetizer pull out a bag of thick pretzels and grainy mustard.
Braised Red Cabbage
- 1 head red cabbage thinly sliced/chopped
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 small yellow onion, finely diced
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
In a large bowl filled with cold water, immerse the sliced cabbage. Set aside.
Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté for 5 minutes. Lift the cabbage from the water and add it to the onions. Add the sliced apple, vinegar, honey, and salt; toss to combine. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover the pan and cook for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
Herb Spaetzle (adapted from AllRecipes)
- 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 cup whole milk (plus some reserve to thin if needed)
- 8 teaspoons minced assorted fresh herbs (such as parsley, thyme, rosemary, and chives), divided
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, divided
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 8 ounces mushrooms, thinly sliced
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3/4 cup (or more) low-salt chicken broth
Blend flour, salt, pepper, and nutmeg in large bowl. Whisk in eggs and milk, forming soft batter. Add more milk if necessary. The batter should be very thick but not firm. Mix in half of herbs.
Bring large pot of salted water to boil. Butter a large bowl. Working with 1/3 cup batter at a time and using rubber spatula, press batter directly into boiling water through 1/4-inch holes on coarse grater, strainer, or wide ladle. Stir spaetzle to separate and boil 2 minutes. Using fine sieve, scoop spaetzle from pot, drain well, and transfer to buttered bowl.
(Can be prepared 3 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.)
Melt 2 tablespoons butter with 1 tablespoon oil in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms; sauté until beginning to soften, about 4 minutes. Add onion; sauté until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. Add remaining 2 tablespoons butter, 1 tablespoon oil, and spaetzle. Sauté until spaetzle begin to brown, stirring often, about 10 minutes. Add 3/4 cup broth. Simmer until broth is absorbed, adding more broth if dry. Mix in remaining herbs; season with salt and pepper.
Apple Streudel (from Pepperidge Farms)
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon water
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons raisins
- 1/2 of a 17.3-ounce package Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry Sheets (1 sheet), thawed
- Confectioners’ sugar (optional)
Heat the oven to 375°. Beat the egg and water in a small bowl with a fork. Stir the granulated sugar, flour and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Add the apples and raisins and toss to coat.
Sprinkle additional flour on the work surface. Unfold the pastry sheet on the work surface. Roll the pastry sheet into a 16 x 12-inch rectangle. With the short side facing you, spoon the apple mixture onto the bottom half of the pastry sheet to within 1 inch of the edge. Roll up like a jelly roll. Place seam-side down onto a baking sheet. Tuck the ends under to seal. Brush the pastry with the egg mixture. Cut several slits in the top of the pastry.
Bake for 35 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown. Let the pastry cool on the baking sheet on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Sprinkle with the confectioners’ sugar, if desired.
*For best results, make sure to toss the apples and raisins until they’re evenly coated with the flour mixture. The flour helps to thicken the juices released by the apples as they cook.
Serve with ice cream. YUM!
Our food challenge has been a great success. So many of you have taken a look at each day’s blog. I hope you have had a chance to try some of these recipes. Are you keeping a medal count with your family? Isn’t is exciting? We are so excited to have Jen, from Juanita’s Cocina (one of my favorite foodies) to guest post tomorrow. Be sure to check in and find out what country she will highlight for our final 2012 Olympic Food Challenge.