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Old 02-05-2020, 10:30 AM
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Default German Carbonara

This dish could go in several categories, so I am putting it here.



Ingredients
1/2 recipe Spaetzle (see below)
1/4 pound German/Austrian speck, cut into 1/4 inch cubes
2-1/2 to 3 cups Napa (hard stems removed) or Savoy cabbage, cut into 3/4 inch slices
2/3 cup grated Emmenthal cheese (I wanted to use Tilsit, but couldn't find locally)
3 egg yolks
2 whole eggs
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions
Make the spaetzle and set aside.

In a large skillet over medium heat, sautee the Speck until brown and crispy. Add the cabbage and cook until just wilted, adding a little salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk the eggs until well broken up, stir in the cheese, and a little salt and pepper.

Once the Speck and cabbage are ready, add in the 1/2 recipe of Spaetzle and mix well. Then, turn heat off and pour in the egg/cheese mixture. Stir until well combined and you have a silky mixture coating the Spaetzle. Serve immediately.

Spaetzle

2 eggs
2 Tbsp freshly rendered lard or schmaltz or oil
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup milk
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg (optional)

Equipment needed: Spaetzle maker of some kind or a colander with large round holes

Mix the eggs, lard/schmaltz/oil, water and milk with an electric mixer or whisk. Stir the flour together with 1/2 tsp of the salt, the baking powder, and nutmeg if using in a dry bowl. Blend this mixture into the liquid. Mix well and set aside for a moment.

Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil and add 2 tsp of salt. Using a spaetzle maker or press squeeze the dough into the boiling water. Use about 1/3 of the dough for each batch. Cook for 2-3 minutes until dumplings float to the surface and puff slightly. Remove them with a slotted spoon and place in a colander.

These can be served with a gravy of some sort, sauteed in butter with some fresh sage or other herb, sauteed in just browned butter, used to make Kasespaetzle (essentially German mac and cheese), used in soups, etc.

NOTE: If you are using a colander to make the spaetzle, you will need something to push the dough through like a large spoon or a scraper.
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Old 02-05-2020, 02:30 PM
ChowderMan ChowderMan is offline
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Default Re: German Carbonara

this is die katz's meow for making spaetzle - I've bought / used / tried everything from the slider types to the ricer types (Cusipro with three plate sizes is the best in that category.)


hard to find at retail - perhaps the German naming convention causes retailers to pause..... it's German short-hand for "assistant"
makes doing big(ger) batches a snap. spaetzle freezes extra well.

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Old 02-06-2020, 12:00 AM
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Default Re: German Carbonara

Looks luscious, med - thanks for posting the recipe!

What does Speck taste like that I would be familiar with?

Lee
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Old 02-06-2020, 06:34 AM
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Default Re: German Carbonara

The making of speck.
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Old 02-06-2020, 02:50 PM
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Default Re: German Carbonara

Ah! Okay, well it looks and sounds similar to salt pork.

I wonder if I smoked a chunk of salt pork if it would be good.

How did you guys smoke your Speck? Temp, wood, length of time?

Lee
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Old 02-07-2020, 08:53 AM
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Default Re: German Carbonara

Wood was alder in order to have just a mild smoke flavor. 200ish until internal temp was around 150.
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  #7  
Old 02-07-2020, 06:21 PM
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Default Re: German Carbonara

Quote:
Originally Posted by medtran49 View Post
Wood was alder in order to have just a mild smoke flavor. 200ish until internal temp was around 150.
Thanks, Karen!

I bought a chunk of fairly well-marbled salt pork today and tossed it in the freezer for a warmer weather smoke-a-thon.

I'm excited to try it!

Lee
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Old 02-07-2020, 09:20 PM
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Default Re: German Carbonara

like so many things, Speck is not a simple topic.

there are two varieties of "Speck" which also exist in the language on this side of the pond:
fatback ("Rückenspeck" - Rücken=back)
and
pork belly ("Bauchspeck" - Bauch=stomach area aka belly)

a third variant "Schinkenspeck" is cut from the leg/ham - most used as a "cold cut" for breakfast. it's not "ham" one would want to use for a sandwich - it's a cut/cure/slice one drapes on a unsalted buttered fresh Broetchen half . . . toothpicks at breakfast +20 required.....

here's the mega-issue: every German town has (multiple) butchers who prepare their stuff in their own manner. in USA we have 2-3 pork houses and it is "all made the same." methods for Speck include salting, drying, curing, brining, smoking. along with dozens of spicing options.
for people with European exposure, the problem becomes not only is it "authentic" but is it the flavor of what the exposed considers "authentic"

I have never found any Speck in USA from any domestic source that matches my Swabia or Bayern experiences. so, basically if making you own - do it like you find it yummy and worry not about what it's "supposed" to taste like.
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Old 02-08-2020, 12:14 AM
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Default Re: German Carbonara

Well, I've never smoked pork belly, but that sounds interesting, too.

Hey, is pork belly just unsalted salt pork???

I should probably move this Speck discussion to a thread of its own. Seems to be hijacking Medtran's beautiful carbonara post.

Lee

Lee
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Old 02-08-2020, 09:12 AM
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Default Re: German Carbonara

Pork belly is what is used to make bacon, so if you've ever made homemade bacon, you've smoked pork belly. We've done that several times. In fact, we may be making some soon, as I need to pull a slab of pork belly out of the freezer for Asian pork belly buns. Depending on how big it is, some may get made into speck or bacon, we'll see.

I believe fat back is what is used to make salt pork, at least good quality salt pork. I need to order some fat back from our heritage pig source, central Florida, because I want to make Lardo, just need to get the marble box made that I need.
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