Friday, January 14, 2011

The Food Desert Project - Knoephla Soup (Cream of Potato Soup with Dumplings)


It's sometimes surprising when a food-desert-worthy recipe will pop up.  Just this morning, I saw an interesting link on my Serious Eats FB page: nom.icanhascheezburger posted this very interesting map of "food by state."

funny food photos - Food Map
see more My Food Looks Funny

Now, I pride myself on having a widely diverse palate, and I've sampled most of the delicacies posted therein...but I had never heard of either of the foods listed for the Dakotas.  After a bit of googling, I discovered that Knoephla Soup was something to explore for this project.  Knoephla (apparently pronounced nip-fla) is a diminutive of the German word knopf, or button, and is a type of blob or button-shaped spaetzle.  The dish originates with the Russian/German settlers in the Northern US.

Knoephla Dough

1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 egg, beaten
6 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tsp black pepper

Soup base:

2 tbsp minced dried onions
1 tbsp dried parsley
2 -3 tbsp white wine
1 tbsp butter
3 cups chicken (or vegetable) broth
1 small can of carrots, drained and diced

2 cups instant mashed potato flakes
3 cups milk
Salt and pepper to taste.

First, begin by rehydrating your aromatics: put the onion and parsley into your soup pot and pour over the wine.  Bring to a boil and then turn off the heat.  Add the butter and allow to sit while you make the knoephla.


Beat the egg with 5 tbsp of milk until frothy.  Add the flour and mix well; you will have a very stiff dough.  Roll the dough into a long snake and cut into button-size chunks.

 Add the chicken broth and carrots to the aromatics and bring to a boil, and then drop the knoephla in a few at a time, stirring lightly between each addition.

When the knoephla rise to the surface, add the potato flakes, milk, and season to taste with salt and pepper.  It isn't traditional as far as I know, but we garnished our soup with some shredded cheddar cheese - and liked it!

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