A word about and a recipe for… Nockerln
Since the launching of my website and the announcement about my book, several people have asked me about Nockerln, given the fact that the word is part of the title of my book. “What is it,” I’ve been asked. Well, it’s an Austrian dish bigger than a German spaetzle and smaller than an American dumpling and usually served with a chicken or meat dish. It’s easy to make and leftovers are great with scrambled eggs the next morning! (a favorite of my husband.) I serve mine with Chicken Paprika, an Austro-Hungarian dish I was taught to make by my Mother-in-law. She also taught me how to make Nockerln. Of course, she taught me in the old-fashion way of “a handful of this and a bit of that” but I’ve “translated” it so you can make it too. Of course, my own recipe still says a “green scoop” of flour, but only I know how much flour my green scoop holds, so I’ve translated that as well.
In the last few days of his life, Alfred wasn’t eating much and I asked him what I could cook for him. When I suggested Nockerln and scrambled eggs he lit up, “THAT would be great,” he said, so I assured him I’d go right home and make nockerln. “You’re wonderful!” said he – and those ended up being the last words he spoke to me before his death five days later. I told the nursing home staff to hold lunch, drove home, made the Nockerln, drove back, met the cook at the kitchen door (observing COVID-19 protocols) and told her to heat them up with two scrambled eggs. Hence the book title, From Schnitzel to Nockerln And Everything That Happened In Between.
And now, here’s how you too can make Nockerln:
Dump 1C flour into a bowl and add two eggs, add about ½ tsp salt mix together and enough milk to make the dough thick, but capable of being stirred.
Bring a pan of salted water to a boil. Place a bit of dough on a smooth surface and with a sharp knife, scrape about 2T at a time into the boiling water. Dip the knife into the water each time so the dough doesn’t stick. Work quickly so the Nockerln cook at about the same rate. Cook each batch about 5 minutes and set aside in a dish with ¼ pd. melted butter. If you think your Nockerln are coming up too big, push off less dough each time.
Since they go together so well, I’ll also share the recipe for Chicken Paprika.
Mutti’s Chicken Paprika
Chop up and brown two large onions
Saute 1 pd. chicken tenders with Spry and when brown
Add 2C water
Add 1 tsp marjoram, bay leaf , 2T tomato paste, 2T sweet paprika(use more or less to taste) and one chicken bouillon cube
Simmer until chicken is tender and add 1/4C sour cream just before serving. Serve with Nockerln.