Saturday, September 3, 2011

Marillenknödel; Austrian Apricot Dumplings

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(4 - 8 dumplings)

Over the years I have come across various versions for these dumplings. Some recipes use a quark dough or yeasted dough...  in my family (both my mum and grandmother) made these with a potato dough similar to gnocchi.

My mum used to fill these dumplings with either apricots or those small Italian prune plums (Zwetschgenknödel). This year the apricots were gigantic and I didn't like the large dumplings I got as a result. I will only make these again if I can get my hands on small apricots. The portions will be more manageable that way.

1 lb starchy potatoes, russet or idaho
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2/3 cup flour, give or take
a pinch or two of salt
a pinch or two of nutmeg
4 - 8 apricots, depending on the size
4 - 8 cubes of sugar

3 tbsp butter
1/2 cup bread crumbs
2 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Wash the potatoes, cut them into a few pieces (no need to peel them) then boil them in salted water until they are tender; 10-15 minutes. Remove, drain the water.

Remove the skins when they are cool enough to handle, then press the warm potatoes through a ricer, or mash them with a potato masher.

Gently mix the egg into the potatoes, then carefully work in the flour, beginning with 1/2 a cup and the salt and nutmeg. Keep adding small amounts of flour until you have a soft smooth dough, trying not to overwork it or to get too much flour into the mixture (otherwise the dumplings might be too dense).

Cut a slit along one side of each apricot. Remove the pit and replace it with a sugar cube.

Divide the dough into 4 to 8 pieces (depending on the size of the fruit), and shape a piece into a ball, then flatten it. Place an apricot into the centre and pull the dough up the sides until the entire apricot is encased, and pinch the dough together. Do the same with the remaining dough and apricots.

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a strong simmer. Carefully drop in the dumplings, and lower the heat so that it barely simmers. Cook the dumplings for about 10-16 minutes (depending on the size of your dumplings). I like to cook them for a couple of minutes after they rise to the surface. Drain the dumplings and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp of butter in a skillet, reserving the other two tablespoons. When it's melted, add the breadcrumbs and fry them until they are golden brown. Remove from heat.

Combine the sugar and cinnamon, and toss that with the breadcrumbs. Roll the dumplings in the breadcrumb and sugar mixture until they are evenly coated.

To serve. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter until it's nicely browned, taking care it doesn't burn. Cut each dumpling in half and drizzle a bit of browned butter over each one.


Sue/the view from great island said...

I have never seen anything like these, but they do look good. I get the feeling that they would be addicting :)

Gerlinde in Washington said...

They are very good, but I only make them every two or three years... perhaps that's a good thing. ^.~

leaf (the indolent cook) said...

Apricot dumplings, how interesting! Thanks for introducing me to something new. :D

Russell at Chasing Delicious said...

Wow what an interesting recipe. I'm intrigued about how all these flavors play together. Thank you for sharing. I'm tempted to give these a try soon!

Anonymous said...

OMG, my Austrian grandmother always used to make those! They are simply delicious!

Jo@jocooks said...

These remind me of when I was a kid and my mother used to make these dumplings with plums. They were delicious.

Dina said...

i've never seen these before. they look delish!

Gerlinde in Washington said...

These are great with prune plums as well.

Wine Gift Basket said...

Great work and great ideas to learn about some delicious recipes.

granite rockville md said...

These are looking amazing Gerlinde!
Thanks for sharing recipe. I am going to try it now.

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granite richmond said...

This is one of the most informative information I've read. It really helps a lot. Thanks for sharing this and teaching some of your Idea's. and nice recipe. love it

JimJoredan said...

its delicious!
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Sue said...

Yum! This reminds me of a Hungarian version of what my mom made growing up using Italian plums.

Gerlinde in Washington said...

Yes! The ones made with plums are delicious!

Anonymous said...

I spent a few days with the Breit family in Ried, Austria, this summer. Cordula introduced me to these wonderful treats. I can hardly wait to try your recipe! Thank you!

Paul said...

My Austrian grandmother made them, she used soaked dried apricots, with a sugar cube in.
What memories, I could eat and eat them!

Tara MacDonald said...

Thanks Gerlinde! I'm a Canadian in Austria and - although an avid foodie - I'm completely new to Austrian cuisine. My Austrian boyfriend said he loves this dish and used to eat it growing up. Can't wait to try it out!

Gerlinde in Washington said...

Tara, this was also one of my favorite childhood dishes. The last time I was in Vienna, I found a coffee shop that made them. I went there nearly every afternoon for the remainder of my trip for a dumpling and a hot cup of tea with rum!

Unknown said...

Gerlinde, I was so excited to have this link sent to me by my mom! My Oma (my dad and his family were from Austria) used to make this. I just bought some apricots and called my mom to see if she had the recipe - she did not, but sent my this link. Can't wait to try it - I plan to use boxed potato dumpling mix to try to make things a bit easier (but hopefully just as tasty)!

Gerlinde in Washington said...

Jennifer, hope they work out for you!

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