Thursday, June 20, 2013

Jetzt geht's los, Spätzle mit Sooooß'!

So before I go on with another weekend trip of mine, let’s have another episode of “Caro eats her weight in delicious Uruguayan food”.  Oh wait! Not only Uruguayan, but also GERMAN! Yes, that’s right. Since my mom sent me the wonderful kitchen tool called “Spätzlehobel” I was itching to make some “Kässpätzle”. Kind of hard to explain what that is to non-Germans but for starters let me tell you that there’s looooots of cheese and onions involved. Except when your name is Lucía. But more about that later on.

First up I was very excited when I got mail from Germany. From my family to be exact, who among other things sent me loots of German goodies. Well, most of it was chocolate. But there was also one of my favorite kitchen appliances in the mail: a “Spätzlehobel”. Of course I had to try it out ASAP.

Danke, Mama!

And since it’s way more fun to cook with and for other people and because I like introducing non-Germans to the very delicious meal called “Kässpätzle”, I of course couldn’t just make some for myself. So I asked myself: “Who should be my guinea pigs?” [insert evil laugh here]

And I selecteeeed… [drumroll here]… the Maceiras family. Well.. and whatever else their last names are. I’m still confused about the whole “not-all-family-members-having-the-same-last-name”-thing. Anyway. That means Pablo’s family. Though really they had nothing to fear since by now I am an expert on Spätzle-making. And I have plenty of references.

So last Saturday was the day of choice for good food. And I mean the whole day because in the evening we ate an incredibly great chicken dish that Pablo’s dad made and together with the “Kässpätzle” we also had the world’s best rice pudding a.k.a. “Milchreis” a.k.a. ”arroz con leche” for dessert. And since my dear friend Desi and I have a special history with that dessert, I of course had to learn how to make it, so I can let her try it as well once we are united again in Germany.

No need to deny it. I eat way too much and way too good here in Uruguay. Maybe my parents should get one of those softwares where you can morph a picture of a person into a fattie so they know who to look for when they are picking me up at the airport. Kidding. I skype with them all the time. They will recognize me. Hopefully…

Anyway, for lunch we had “Kässpätzle”. First things first, there really isn’t a recipe for it. I know how to make it so I make the dough by rule of thumb. And I was quite challenged when Pablo’s family told me they don’t eat that many eggs there. Well.. I reduced the amount of eggs. And I negotiated a bit. And ultimately I got them to agree to five eggs. And it turned out great so everybody’s happy. 

 So anyhow I prepared the dough and had Pablo, Lucía and their mom Brenda do the minion jobs. Cutting and frying onions and grating cheese that is.  And eventually everything was ready for me to show them  some Spätzle-making magic. I’m not gonna explain how it works here. Either you are familiar with it, or you can hit me up and I will prepare it for you. Of course you will have to cover for any travel expenses that might incur.

Me and my kitchen-minion

Pablo being all skeptical

So eventually the Spätzle were done and ready to be covered with onions. 

Wait.. STOP!! No onions!!


Because Lucía hates onions. Not sure how the poor little onions deserve that hatred but since I have a little brother who is also a little particular about food, I of course knew what had to be done. Take some Spätzle out for Lucía and then go on with the process. And that includes lots of fried onions on top of the Kässpätzle. Et voilà! Lunch is ready. And I think now it is officially Uruguay-approved.

Lucía doesn't know what she is missing out on... 
...more onions for the rest of us!

The sweet smell of onions and cheese

Handsome cooks, delicious food

And since you can’t ever eat too much Spätzle, my friend Johanna and I decided to cook some together this Wednesday as we had a free day due to Artigas’ birthday. No if you are wondering who Artigas is… He’s Uruguay’s national hero and there are about a gazillion statues of him on his horse around Montevideo/Uruguay.

Anyway we had a free day and “ganas de cocinar” (= we really wanted to cook something spectacularly and fantastically delicious). So we invited some friends and decided to cook Spätzle with “Blaukraut” (=red cabbage) and “Schweinebraten” (=pork roast). That was quite the ambitious goal as the Schweinebraten itself takes about 2 hours to prepare. Actually, the hardest part was finding the right piece of meat in Spanish. But with the help of my friend Anna and some gesturing I eventually ended up with a piece from a pig’s shoulder (or at least that’s what I think). And with the great instructions my mom had given me before and Johanna’s knowledge about pork roast, we ended up with hands down the most delicious meal I have ever made.

So altogether it was Johanna and I, our two German friends Julia and Sebastian H. and Pablo who came over for his (extended) lunch break. And while us girlies were cooking, we handed over the  simple task of opening a bottle of red wine to the guys. They eventually got help from my roommate Fanny and her boyfriend Sebastian and with joint efforts and by completely destroying the cork they somehow opened the bottle. Don’t ask how long it took them… but to be honest it was one of those very sh*tty plastic corks.

Sebastian and the cork

The guys and their only responsibility: a very stubborn bottle of wine

Pretty cooks

But it didn’t matter anyway because we had food. Incredibly delicious food. German food. That tasted like a Sunday meal. And home. It definitely tasted like home.

¡Buen Provecho!

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