An Austrian Affair

Austrian Flag

Unusual fact: The sewing machine was invented in 1818 by the Austrian Josef Madersperger

 

Well this is definitely the biggest country cook up yet with  15 people to cater for. It was Angus and Dad’s birthday celebration as they are born on the same day. We had to do a lot of cooking. For my source of inspiration and help for just about every thing to do with this dish, I went to our Austrian family friends the Schlotterbachs. Maria, who was also a guest at this dinner party was the real inspiration. Mum  and I went around to her house to decide on some dishes last week. We decided on a cheese and fruit platter for entree, potato dumplings in beef goulash and vienna schnitzel for main and the finally apple strudel (or Apfelstrudel as the Austrian locals like to call it) for dessert.

linz-01

On the cheese platter we placed pear, red seedless grapes, yellow pear and black pearl tomatoes, quince paste, cheese (brie and Galesburg) and continental meats. For the bread we bought a really good ciabatta sour dough. It had lots of nuts in it. We bought  it from a specialty bread store.  I’m sure that if you lived in Eastern Europe you would just be able to get it from the grocery store.

Yellow Pear Tomatoes
Yellow Pear Tomatoes
Black Pearl Tomatoes
Black Pearl Tomatoes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We made some decorations for the table, little Austrian Flags and some menus as well.

Menu
The Menu

All of these recipes have the amount of ingredients for 15 people, so if you’re cooking for two then either reduce  the amounts or be prepared  for eating Austrian for quite a while! The rule for the goulash is that for every kilogram of meat you need a kilogram of onions. We had two kilograms of meat so the chopping of the onions took a while. DON’T GO WITH PRE CHOPPED ONIONS. They have less of an oniony flavour and they aren’t chopped in the shape we want. We want them chopped very small and I mean extremely small as they are  to melt away into the goulash  You need to cook the onions to a caramelised consistency.  But don’t put in any sugar. You will need two types of paprika for the goulash recipe. Sweet and smoked paprika. We don’t really have a recipe for this because it comes from Maria’s head. It is a traditional authentic Austrian recipe.

Image fro, DS Lands
Image fro, DS Lands

The dumplings were very good.  There were two types: a bacon dumpling and a mushroom dumpling. The mushrooms we used were a European mushroom, chanterelle. They are very yellow and can be picked in the wild.

The veal schnitzel was an accompaniment to the goulash and dumplings. It was a  simple potato salad with the schnitzel. The schnitzel can only be called a vienna schnitzel if it is veal. If it is made with pork or chicken then it is called pork schnitzel or chicken schnitzel.

The sweet dumplings were definitely my favourite dish.  The strawberries in the  middle had cooked down into a almost sauce and were hot and sweet. The crunchy breadcrumb mixture was a perfect accompaniment; so was the berry sauce,

Finally the Apple Strudel. I had a master class of making apple strudel from Maria. When you are stretching the dough make sure that you do it quickly, because as soon as the dough cools down it doesn’t stretch nearly as well. We made two strudels, one with fresh apples and the other with canned pie. We accidentally put too much filling in the pie apple strudel and it burst. The pastry has no sugar in it but the filling has plenty!. We used vanilla sugar and  plain ground cinnamon

CHEESE PLATTER

Results:

Angus  8

Me  8

Dad  8

Mum  6

Nanyan  10

KJ  10

Matthias Snr  11

Maria  8 1/2

Matt  11

Wendy  10

Beef Goulash with dumplings

Results:

Angus  9

Me 8

Dad  9

Mum  8

Nanyan  10

KJ 8 1/2

Matthias Snr  11

Maria  7

Matt  10.25

Wendy  10

Veal Schnitzel with potato salad and green beans

Results:

Angus  8

Me  7.5

Dad  9

Mum  8

Nanyan  10

KJ 8 1/2

Matthias Snr  11

Maria  10

Matt  12.5

Wendy  10

Apple Strudel with cream and sweet dumplings

Results:

Angus  9 1/2

Me 9

Dad  10

Mum  9

Nanyan  10

KJ  10

Matthias Snr  11

Maria –

Matt  10.98

Wendy  10

CHEESE PLATTER

2 pears

1 bunch of red seedless grapes

2 types of cheese (e.g. Brie, Galesburg)

1 quince paste

1 sour dough loaf cut into slices

1 handful of yellow pear tomatoes

1 handfull of black pearl tomatoes

1 handful of olives

Continental meat

Place the bread on a wooden board. Arrange the rest of the ingredients on a nice board or platter with two cheese knifes.

Cheese Platter
Cheese Platter
Cheese Platter
Cheese Platter

GOULASH WITH DUMPLINGS

Goulash

2kg Onions

2.5kg beef chuck steak

400g diced pork

140g tomato paste

5tbs sweet paprika

2tbs smoked paprika

4cups / 1L Beef stock

Bacon Dumplings

1/2 loaf sliced white bread

4 rashers bacon

1 onion

2 cups of warm milk

2 tbs parsley

Mushroom Dumplings

1/2 loaf sliced white bread

As many chanterelle mushrooms as you wish

2 cups of milk

2 tbs parsley

1 onion

Cut meat up into 1cm pieces, brown in a pan. Remove and put to side. Chop the onions extremely fine then fry at a medium heat until soft. You need them to be almost caramelised.  Add the paprika and stir then add the meat and tomatoes. Tip into a slow cooker and add the stock. Then leave on high for 3hrs then on low over night.

To make the bacon dumplings, chop  each slice of white bread into 1cm pieces. Spread out onto a baking tray and bake in a low oven until dry and crunchy. Chop the onion the fry it off until soft. Add the bacon and cook for a few minutes. When the bread is dry and crunchy put in in a large bowl and tip the bacon, onion and parsley on top and mix. Add the warm milk and stir until the bread and onion mixture is all mixed and gluggy. Leave to rest for 20mins. Roll into golf ball sized dumplings and place on a tray. Boil a pot of water and att 1 1/2 tbs of salt. Add 6 dumplings wait until water starts boiling again, add 6 more. Do not let the water stop boiling as the dumpling will fall apart. When the dumplings start floating let them keep cooking for a few more minutes then remove them.

To make the mushroom dumplings, chop  each slice of white bread into 1cm pieces. Spread out onto a baking tray and bake in a low oven until dry and crunchy. Chop the onion the fry it off until soft. Add the mushrooms and cook for a few minutes. When the bread is dry and crunchy put in in a large bowl and tip the mushroom, onion and parsley on top and mix. Add the warm milk and stir until the bread and onion mixture is all mixed and gluggy. Leave to rest for 20mins. Roll into a large sausage and wrap in cling film so that there is no air in the wrapping. Wrap with another three layers of cling film, twisting the edges so that it looks like a wrapped lolly. Wrap in 1 layer of aluminium foil. Place in a pot of boiling water and leave to cook fir 45mins. Once  cooked chop into rounds.

To serve, spoon goulash into two large serving bowls and on one put the bacon dumplings and on the other the mushroom dumplings. Serve the desired amount fo goulash with on of each dumpling.

Goulash and bacon dumplings
Goulash and bacon dumplings
Goulash and mushroom dumplings
Goulash and mushroom dumplings
Goulash in slow cooker
Goulash in slow cooker

Vienna Schnitzel with green beens and potato salad

As many schnitzels as you would like

Egg

Bread crumbs

Lard

Peanut oil

Green beans

Lemons

5 boiled and peeled potatoes

Oil

Vinegar

1tbs chopped parsley

2 gherkins

Beat the egg and then place it in a wide bowl, pour some bread crumbs into a wide bowl. Put the schnitzel into the egg and coat then put it into the bread crumbs and repeat with each schnitzel. Melt the lard into a frying pan, then add the oil. Heat the lard oil mix then test to see if hot enough by  dipping the corner of one of schnitzel into the pan, if it bubbles then it is hot enough, if not then leave to heat up. Fry off the schnitzels for 5 mins flipping to cook the other side every minute.

To make the potato salad, slice the potatoes into rounds then in half. To make the dressing, do as much as you want but do it as 1/3 vinegar and 2/3 oil. Then add a spoonful of  wholegrain mustard, shake it up then mix it into the potatoes with the parsley. Just before serving do as much mayonaise as needed to make it the right consistency that you want. Add two chopped gherkins.

Put the green beans in boiling water and leave to boil until cooked but still a little crunchy and green.

To serve put all of the schnitzels on a plate and the potato salad in a bowl and the green beans in a bowl. Chop the lemons into eighths then each on those in half through the middle. Juice some on top of the beans and put some beside the schnitzels so that people can grab some if they want.

The beans
The beans

Apple Strudel

1kg Plain flour

2tbs Apple cider vinegar

Warm water

Pinch of salt

7 Fresh apples

1.6kg tinned apple

As many raisins as desired optional

Butter melted

100g Almond meal

Vanilla Bean Paste
Vanilla Bean Paste

2 handfuls plain flour

Vanilla sugar

Ground cinnamon

Guernsey Cream

pinch vanilla bean paste

1tsp Icing sugar

1 lemon (if using fresh apples)

Place flour in a mound on bench and add sprinkle salt on top make a well. Add the vinegar to some water and mix. Add a bit of the water mixture to the well and incorporate it into your flour a bit at a time with your hands adding more water in needed. Once all of the flour is mixed in knead the dough for 5 to 10 mins or until soft, you will feel the dough coming off you hands and the dough getting really soft and silky. Divide the dough into two pieces. Fill your sink up with hot water and put the dough into a bowl with high edges. Cover the first dough with cling wrap then put the other one, put more cling wrap over this one then a tea towel. Place it into the sink and leave for 40 to 60mins or at least 30 making sure that the water is hot the whole time. Peel and core the fresh apples making sure that all of the skin is removed as well as all of the brown bruised bits. Place them all in a big container with a lid and cover them with water and the juice from the lemon. Just before stretching the dough take them out and use a mandolin to slice them thinly.

Preheat the oven to 180˚C. You will need a big bench with nothing on it for the next bit. You will have to work quickly for the next bit because when the dough cools down it will  not stretch. Place one of the doughs on the bench and roll it out on a rolling pin until it is about 1cm thick. Then grab it at the top and work your way around it stretching it out, when it gets to big to hold the place it on the bench and grap the out side and pull out wards. You want the same thickness all the way around, if it gets too cold and the outside is still to thick then you can cut the outside edges. Get the melted butter and use a pastry brush and brush it all over in butter. Sprinkle half of the almond meal over the pastry along the whole width of the dough leaving a few cm’s at the side but only about 5cm high leaving a few centimetres at the end before you start the filling (see the below photos to see what I mean). Get the fresh or tinned apple and spread it where you sprinkled the almond meal. Sprinkle over the raisins. Then generous amounts of ground cinnamon and vinilla sugar. Get the bit of pastry you left clear at the end and start rolling it until you get to the end of the pastry then stretch over the last bits of pastry and push them in so that they don’t come off and it gives it that home made look. Twist off any over lapping edges of pastry at the side but don’t twist it off too close to the filling or all the filling will come out while it is cooking so leave a bit of pastry at the ends.

Get out a baking tray and use a pastry brush to brush it in melted butter. Quickly move the strudel to the baking tray in one quick movement trying not to break it!  Repeat for second lot of dough 3mins f dough and apples that weren’t used. Liberally brush the strudels in melted butter then place in the oven and cook for about an hour brushing in more butter half way through.

Whip cream (note it is guernsey cream so it only takes about to whip with an electric mixer) half way through add the vanilla bean paste and icing sugar and be careful not to whip it to almost butter like we did!

Serve hot strudel with cream.

This is a good video on how to stretch apple strudel dough, ignore the ingredients

Sprinkling the Almond Meal
Sprinkling the Almond Meal
Adding the filling
Adding the filling
The cooked Strudel
The cooked Strudel
Apple strudel and sweet dumplings
Apple strudel and sweet dumplings

Sweet Dumplings

I can not tell you how to make the dough for these as Maria made the dough at home, but I can tell you how to wrap them. You get a piece of the dough and flatten it out with your fingers. Get half a strawberry and put it in the middle with a teaspoon of sugar. Stretch the dough over so that you can’t see any of the strawberry anymore and that there is no holes so that water cab get in. Place them into boiling water using the same technique as with the dumplings. When they rise to the surface they are done. In a fry pan melt butter and add some cinnamon sugar and normal sugar. Add about 3/4 of a cup of bread crumbs and mix until of the butter has been soaked up.

To make the berry sauce place a packed of frozen mixed berries in a sauce pan with some sugar and water and leave to cook until all of the berries are cooked and it is hot. Leave to cool, puree the sauce with a stick mixer.

Place a dumpling in a bowl and sprinkle on top the bread crumb mixture, spoon on some of the berry sauce.

The berry sauce
The berry sauce

19 thoughts on “An Austrian Affair

  1. Guten Appetit! Great work on your blog Ellie! Webby wants to know what beverages went with the meal! Food looks fantastic! We are impressed.

  2. Elly, you are amazing. Creating this food is one thing, but then to feed everyone AND share it through your own blog. As a fellow blogger I feel so proud of you – enjoy this creative outlet you clever thing. Catherine x

  3. Elly, what a fantastic blog. Thoroughly enjoyed reading and my mouth is watering! Looking forward to your next culinary creation.

  4. That was amazing. Well done. Huge effort for cooking for 15. Love the recipes and ratings was great. I am a follower

  5. Awesome work Elly. You are obviously so passionate about your cooking and that is great. It looked like a magnificent dinner party. I cannot wait for the next destination…you are a very inspirational young lady. Think we may have Gouash for dinner 🙂

  6. I am going to make those dumplings with the goulash. Have never tried it with pork and beef (yum). I am very surprised that all Austrians are not overweight with all that carb!. Morag

  7. Elly,
    we are very proud of you and your efforts. It was lovely to be included in the part-goers. A great birthday treat for Dad and Angus. Food – great; effort – magnificent; service – wonderful; BUT Dad and Angus could have worn leather shorts and yodelled.
    NanYan & KJ

  8. Hi Elly
    Sounds to have been a great success, wish I could have been there to help [prepare and eat]!
    I can see that NanYan is a big supporter!!
    Love
    PaMac

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