I first tasted spaetzle in Munich where it was simply boiled and served with a meatloaf-like dish covered with a mushroom gravy. They’re delicious little pasta blobs that soak up flavour from any additions. I have to admit though that I didn’t think much about recreating such a dish – I’ve seen recipes for spaetzle online but I had no time to make it from scratch or at least, I preferred to use my time to make other complex dishes.
Then, last week, I found a bag of ready-made spaetzle at one of my local shops. They were already cooked and only needed a brief spell in boiling water to heat them up – a perfect base for a weekday dinner. After a friend mentioned the addition of cheese and butter, I took a look online and came up with this rendition of käsespaetzle, cheese spaetzle. It’s total comfort food – starch, cheese, butter – and would be perfect for a chilly evening.
500g bag of spaetzle
3 tbsps butter
1 cup grated cheese (gruyere preferable, but I used a mild cheddar since that was what I had in the flat)
2 onions, thinly sliced
salt and black pepper
In a pan over medium heat, heat some olive oil and then slowly fry the sliced onion – you want them slightly caramelised and a light brown. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
In the meantime, bring a pot of water to the boil. When the water’s boiling, boil the spaetzle for 2 minutes – I had to do this in a few batches. Drain and mix with the butter and most of the cheese. Pour into a buttered casserole dish. Top with the onions and the remaining cheese. Place in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the onions have gone brown.
I had it with a salad on the side. We had a little bit leftover too and it was even better the next day.