As the weather turns cooler, I’ve been craving comfort food: goulash with smokey paprika sauce, hearty bean soups, spaetzle…the list could continue. Not having made spaetzle since I moved into my current abode, I figured it was time break out the ole spaetzle maker, whip up a batter, and boil some water. That’s not the whole truth, of course. The whole truth starts with a sale at the local grocery: cabbage for 39 cents per pound. My bargain loving heart could little resist. I thought: what better combination on a cool day than spaetzle, schnitzel, and cabbage?
Parker couldn’t agree more, although Parker agrees to most things when treats are involved.
1 head of cabbage, cleaned
1/3 cup Apple Cider Vineagar
This is pretty much as easy as 1-2-3. 1) Slice the cabbage into thin strips. 2) Place sliced cabbage into deep saute pan on medium heat. 3) Add Apple Cider Vinegar and a dash of salt. Cook the cabbage until soft, about 20-30 minutes
4 thin cut pork chops
1 and 1/2 cups Panko bread crumbs
2 tablespoons paprika
1 teaspoon pepper
dash of cumin
1 egg, beaten for the egg wash
Heat the oven to 350 degrees
Rub olive oil over a glass or metal baking dish (cooking spray works here as well)
I’ll start off by stating in full disclosure that is a non-traditional schnitzel. I use Panko because I like the way it is both crispy and soft when baked in the oven. To begin, mix together the bread crumbs, pepper, paprika, cumin, and dash of salt. Set the mixture close to the bowl containing the beaten egg. Individually douse each pork chop in the egg, then coat with the bread crumb mixture. Place the pork chop in the baking pan. Repeat with all pork chops.
Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, until the breadcrumbs turn golden and crispy around the edge.
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 to 5 tablespoons low fat milk
2 large eggs
Generous handful freshly chopping parsley
2 quarters of boiling water
Here’s where the meal gets tricky. Without a spaetzle maker, a handy bit of improvisation is necessary. Use a colander and press about 1/2 the dough through the colander’s holes with a rubber spatula. The dough droplets will form the spaetzle. Let the spaetzle cook (2 to 3 minutes…they will float to the top when cooked) and remove using a slotted spoon. Repeat the process with the remaining dough.
To make the dough:
1. Mix together flour and sale. Stir together the milk and eggs and add to flour mixture. Let stand about 10 minutes.
2. Bring the water to a boil, if it isn’t already. Use the procedure mentioned above it you do not have a spaetzle maker. If the dough becomes too sticky, add milk one tablespoon at a time to the dough.
3. While the spaetzle are cooking, brown some butter over low to medium heat. Add spaetzle to the brown butter and stir together. Serve with a little coarse ground pepper and fresh parsley sprinkled over the top.
Any of these items can be prepared separately or together.