I am amazed at all the wonderful creations I am receiving from fellow foodbloggers out there for our fabulous "Waiter, there's something in my..." event, now in its 6th instalment, where the theme is DUMPLINGS, of course. Here is my own contribution and, so nobody could say I had an unfair advantage, being Austrian and all, I decided to leave my comfort zone a bit with dumplings I had not tried before. But to be frank, it's not like I make our traditional Austrian dishes every day and I certainly don't have years of daily practice of dumpling rolling anyway!
Years ago I saw a mouthwatering picture of "Nougatknödel" in some magazine and stuck it in my recipe folder - no suitable occasion ever presented itself for making it, so I just knew that they were the right thing for this event. I didn't follow the recipe, mainly because I haven't yet managed to get my hands on some Nougat here, which, confusingly, is not the chewy French nougat (de Montmélimar) or Spanish turrón, stuffed with nuts and/or dried fruit that we call "Turkish honey" back home... our "Nougat", sometimes called "Viennese nougat", is basically a more solid version of a noisette (hazenut and chocolate cream) filling and is just mouth-wateringly delicious if bought at the right source. Confiseries up and down the country will sell their own, home-made version of it in all its glorious creaminess.
I had to resort to making my own - of course, there are people who will just take a chocolate truffle or a Mozartkugel for a centre (heretics!), but I was intent to make my own - grind some nuts, melt some chocolate, how hard can it be? Well, it wasn't hard, but then it didn't taste like the real thing either. Never mind, the dumplings turned out great for what they were, not a noisette centre (in hind-sight I could have scooped and frozen Nutella, maybe, but then I am not a cheat, am I?), but a fluffy dough of curd/quark/ricotta and brioche crumbs with a molten centre of good quality dark chocolate and grated pecan nuts, and some brown sugar for extra sweetness. Cooked for a mere 15 minutes in gently simmering water, then rolled in a mixture of pecans, breadcrumbs and a tad cinnamon, they were a welcome comforting dessert on a cold and dreary evening in June. And while certain people were discussing whether dumplings were summery enough a theme, I can report that we even had the heating going yesterday... so never mind a summery theme, at least nobody could say it didn't fit the weather!
Other dumpling recipes on thepassionatecook:
Spinach dumplings with blue cheese sauce (Spinatknödel mit Kaesesauce) - August 2004
Bacon-stuffed dumplings with white cabbage salad (Speckknödel mit Krautsalat) - August 2004
Yeast dumplings with plum preserve and poppyseeds (Germknödel mit Powidl und Mohn) - June 2004
Threesome of curd dumplings with rhubarb-strawberry compote (Topfenknödel mit Erdbeer-Rhabarber-Kompott) - May 2005
Truffled bread dumplings with red cabbage (Semmelknödel mit Trüffel und Rotkraut) - October 2006
Meatball dumplings with sauerkraut (Hascheeknödel mit Sauerkraut) - January 2005