Light potato dumplings with buttery croutons Germany
While I had been on somewhat of a dumpling making hiatus in the beginning of the new year, a couple of weeks ago I made a dumpling variation from a new country-Germany. The boiled potato dumplings (is it just me, or does the sound of boiled anything conjure up images of unappetizing food from the 1950s?) turned out to be phenomenal. And I don’t know how I lived almost 31 years without making my own croutons. They were so simple to make and tasted delicious (seriously, I could have had a meal of just croutons and a green vegetable-to offset all of the butter needed for the former).
Even though I would make my own mashed potatoes last weekend when making the Irish dish of colcannon, for the potato dumplings I took a much simpler route (and hope you will too) by using instant mashed potatoes. It saved infinite amounts of time and really made making the dumplings almost effortless.
The dumplings were delicious and the fact that there was a buttery crouton in the middle of them was an added treat (somewhat like unwrapping a Christmas present). They’re terrific for a meatless meal; I served them with some leftover Swedish meatballs.
The Red Headed Traveler’s cooking tips:
-Be sure to use a lot of flour when shaping the dumplings (the dough will stick to your hands otherwise)
-The original recipe called for semolina. I didn’t have any so just used more all-purpose flour but if you have some on hand, feel free.
-The dumplings will take less time to cook (and float to the top) than the recipe said. Just watch accordingly.
Light potato dumplings with buttery croutons
(Lockere KartoffelkloBe mit Croutons)
Recipe adapted from Modern German Food by Roz Denny
1 thick slice white bread
1 oz butter
5 oz plain flour
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly grated nutmeg
2 medium free-range eggs, beaten
Freshly ground black pepper
Cut the crusts from the bread, then cut into 12 ¾ inch squares. Heat the butter in a frying pan and toss in the bread. Fry until golden on all sides, then drain on paper towels.
Make mashed potatoes, cool to room temperature.
In a large bowl mix together the flour, salt, nutmeg, and some pepper. Mix in the potato then gradually work in the beaten egg until you have a firm but just soft dough. Add the egg cautiously towards the end in case you make the mixture too soft.
Bring a large pan of salted water to boil. Using floury hands, scoop up a tablespoon of mixture and shape into a smooth ball. Press a buttery crouton in the center and reshape. Repeat with all the mixture. Drop the dough balls into boiling water and turn the heat to medium. Cook uncovered for about 12-15 minutes (it may be less time). Once the balls rise to the surface allow a couple minutes more to cook, then remove with a slotted spoon. Don’t drain the pan into a colander or you will squash the light texture of the dumplings.
Drizzle with melted butter if you like, and serve.
You can make larger dumplings filled with several croutons if desired.