I thought of you with love today, but that is nothing new. I thought about you yesterday, and the days before that, too.
I think of you in silence. I often speak your name. All I have are your memories, and your picture in a frame.
Your memory is my keepsake, with which I’ll never part. God has you in His keeping, I have you in my heart.
My winter-escapist mind often thinks back to the lovely German summers filled with afternoons of helping my grandmother harvest fresh chives in the garden for a snack of creamy quark with chives on a nice, rustic piece of bread.
Quark is a whole topic in and of itself. It just does not exist in the United States. Sad. Fact. If I had to paint you a picture of what it is, it is a dairy product kind of like sour cream and kind of like cottage cheese, but forget about the curds.
Anyways, we will tackle quark in a later post when I attempt to make my own one day (I may have gotten a little sidetracked). Today is all about a German dish that my grandma used to prepare: Linsen mit Spätzle aka Lentils with Spätzle (you won’t be able to get away from this amazing word; those are the famous German egg noodles that I oh so love).
This meal consists of lentils that have been soaked overnight and cooked with ingredients such as bay leaf, onion, tomato paste and red wine vinegar to make them extra tender, juicy and yummy. Then they are served with freshly made egg noodles and a couple of beef franks (or turkey or pork, whichever is your preference).
Please make this for yourself:
For the lentils:
- lentils (I used a 1 pound bag of dried lentils)
- 1 large onion, finely diced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 bay leaves
- salt and pepper to taste
- red wine vinegar to taste
- 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4 inch thick round slices
- 1 bouillon cube (I used vegetable)
For the roux:
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- 2 tablespoons of flour
For the Spätzle:
- 2 cups of flour
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup of milk
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- pepper, nutmeg (1 pinch each)
- 8 of your sausages of choice
Prepare the Lentils:
- First off, start by soaking the lentils overnight.
- Drain and rinse the lentils.
- In a pot, sauté the onion and carrot in a little bit of butter.
- Add the lentils and fill the pot with water until it covers the lentils by about 1 inch.
- Add the broth cube, tomato paste and bay leaves.
- Cook for about 45 minutes.
- Make a roux and add to the lentils (find Emeril’s recipe for a roux here)
In the meantime, make the Spätzle:
- Whisk all the ingredients together.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
- Either utilize a Spätzle press (As pictured, I used my Westmark Spätzle press. It makes it so quick and easy!) or drop them in the hot water using the cutting board and knife method. (Spread the batter onto a cutting board, with a large Santoku knife, fling pieces of batter into the water at high speed. Make sure you work in batches and stir the water occasionally to avoid the noodles from clumping up)
- Let boil of about 2 minutes, then drain.
Heat up the cooked frank sausages in hot water (not boiling). Arrange everything on a plate and garnish with some chopped parsley.
Guten Appetit & Prost (have a shot of Schnaps with my grandma)! 🙂
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