Goodcookbecky's Blog

Letting the juices of life (or food) drip from my chin!


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Marillenknödel – Austrian Apricot Dumplings

My folks are in town for a few weeks.  We wanted to make some German/Austrian food while they were visiting.  Today we made Marillenknödel (German for Apricot Dumplings) for lunch.  They are apricots wrapped in a cheese dough, then cooked in simmering water for 15 minutes.  Then you roll the dumplings in toasted breadcrumbs and coconut flakes.  Sprinkle each crumb coated dumpling with a little sugar and extra breading on the side and enjoy.  It was nice to work with my mother to make these. One word of caution though, if the fruit is very juicy you need to take care or it could squirt hot fruit juice.  You could easily swap out the fruit with plums (but they would be called “Zwetschkenknödel”in German).

The dough our family used most was called Topfenteig (the closest ingredient to that is cream cheese, though not the perfect substitute it works!) Other doughs used can be Kartoffelteig (Potato dough) or Brandteig (similar to the dough you use in creating cream puffs). Here is our family’s rendition:

Marillenknödel- Austrian Apricot Dumplings

adapted from a traditional recipe used in Austria

Serves 6

Dough:

  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 6 Tbsp flour (plus more if needed)

Breadcrumb coating:

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup dry plain breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut

6 apricots (or plums- or even large strawberries)

Instructions:

Mix cream cheese, egg and salt together.  Gradually add flour – enough to make the dough  not overly sticky and easy to handle, but soft and pliable.  Split the dough into 6 equal size balls.  Flour a pastry board and us a rolling pin to gently make small discs of dough.  Roll the apricots in flour and place in center of the dough rounds.  Gently wrap the dough around the fruit and seal the seams.  Repeat with remaining dough and fruit.  The process of wrapping the dough takes some patience, but it is well worth the effort.

Allow the dumplings to rest (at room temperature) while you get a large pot of water to the boiling point.  When it is at a full boil, lower the dumplings carefully into the hot water.  They may sink to the bottom while others may float.  Lower the heat so it is still simmering, but not a full boil while the dumplings are in the water.  Gently stir the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon to loosen any dumplings that may stick to the bottom, but this is usually not a problem.  Cook for about 15 minutes.

In a large non stick skillet, over medium heat, melt butter.  Add the dry breadcrumbs (Progresso is fine) and coconut flakes and stir to toast the crumbs.  Remove the dumplings with a slotted spoon and place in the crumb mixture, carefully roll and spoon the crumbs over the dumplings.  Place on a serving platter.

To serve, sprinkle each dumpling with about 1/2 tsp of sugar and enjoy.  This makes a great breakfast, lunch or dessert.

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Pictures:

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All-American Flag Jello Mold

My 14 year old daughter likes to cook too.  She took it upon herself to make a red white and blue jello flag mold.  It had some imperfections, but tasted really yummy.  We especially enjoyed the lemon mixed with cool whip layer.  You can find the recipe here.  We decorated the red stripes with fresh raspberries, but that is the only change we made to the recipe.  We will look forward to making it again.


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Strawberries and cream

This festive looking dessert is in the theme of red, white, and blue.

I cut the tops of the strawberries off and used canned whipped cream to decorate the cut tops.  Next, I dotted them with blueberries and carefully arranged them in dessert bowls.  It is a great and easy to make dessert (even kids could make).

Then the kids had a little fun with the remaining strawberries.  They made strawberry creatures… I am not sure if it looks like a dinosaur or not. You decide.  They cut a little mouth in the tip of the strawberry and then made small holes for the eyes and placed blueberries into the holes.  I thought it was cute enough to share!


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Turkey for Dessert!

No, I did not make turkey ice cream — you will need to watch Iron Chef to see that happen!  My kids got crafty and used Fudge covered grahams, shortbread cookies, Reese’s peanut butter cups (mini), Rolo Chocolate Caramel candies and candy corn and melted chocolate to make these cute little creations.  I found the idea in a Pillsbury booklet.


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Chocolate Chip Cookies

My kids have been clamoring for freshly baked Chocolate Chip Cookies.  My sweet-tooth of a daughter would settle for the cookie dough that comes ready to bake, but this is my favorite from scratch recipe.  I like to use the Ghirardelli brand semi sweet chocolate chips, because I am a chocolate snob.  Feel free to use any other brand though if you are less picky.

I also use the recipe on the back of the bag of Ghirardelli (link)

Chocolate Chip Cookies – adapted from Ghirardelli

Yield: 4 dozen

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened (2 sticks)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract (original 2 tsp)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips (Ghirardelli brand are a terrific product)
  • 1 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Directions:

  1. Place the flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl and stir to combine.  Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Mix the butter, eggs, vanilla, brown and white sugar in a large mixing bowl until well combined and creamy.  Add 1/3 of the flour mixture at at time and start to mix on low (or it will coat your kitchen with a nice coating of flour-it may look like snow, but trust me it’s not nearly as pretty as it sounds!)  Increase the speed of the mixer to medium and make sure it is nicely combined, but you don’t need to over-beat it.
  3. Add chocolate chips and chopped pecans and mix just until combined.
  4. Drop the dough with a teaspoon on a baking sheet.  Depending on the size of the pan, you should fit 12-15 cookies per pan.  Bake at 375 F for 9-11 minutes or until golden brown.
  5. When the cookies are done, take them from the oven, but do not immediately remove them from the sheet pan.  Let them sit for a few minutes so they firm up a little before you remove them to cool on a wire rack completely.  Store them in an air tight container if they make it to storage at all! 🙂  Best served with a tall glass of cold milk.

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Angels on Horseback

My husband grew up with this  sandwich and now it is one of my family’s favorite sandwiches as well.  It consists of toast, topped with American  Cheese slices, sliced tomato, and cooked bacon which is then broiled  for a few minutes until  the  cheese is melted.  We made this while we were vacationing in NJ on the shore and wanted something easy to make that did not take long.  Clean up is easy if you use those convenient (all be it expensive) Microwavable bacon.

Angels on Horseback

Serves 4

  • 8 slices white bread, toasted
  • 8 slices american  cheese
  • 8 slices tomatoes
  • 8 slices bacon

Toast the bread and top with American  cheese slices, tomatoes, and bacon.  Broil under a watch full eye.  Once the cheese melts and  bacon bubbles it is ready to eat.

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