Sunday, April 19, 2009

Rindsrouladen (Beef roll ups)

Rindsrouladen are a german treat that you absolutely should try to make. I think they're fairly foolproof, the trickiest part is to find beef that is sliced thin enough. I bought some sort of thinly cut steaks, that I pounded with a meat pounder until less than 5 mm thick (ideally even thinner).

8 slices of thin steak
8-16 slices of bacon
8-16 pickles
onion, carrots, celery
bay leaf
pepper, salt, broth concentrate

Pound the meat if needed. Spread mustard thinly on each slice of meat, layer one or two slices of bacon on top, add a pickle, and roll up. Tie with kitchen thread.

Turn the rolls in flour and brown on high heat in your dutch oven or similar heavy pot. When all sides are brown, remove meat and add chopped onion, celery and carrots to the pot, an stir until the bottom of the pot is clean. Put the meat back in, cover with liquid so that the rolls are half covered. Simmer for 1 hour or more, until meat is very tender and delishious.
Then, remove the meat and keep warm. Use immersion blender to blend the vegetables and broth into a gravy. You shouldn't need to add starch since the flour from the meat rolls will bind the gravy.

Serve with dumplings of some sort, and a vegetable side. I served with 'Schupfnudeln' (Bubaspitzla) but I didn't like the way they came out so that recipe will have to wait for another post. Enjoy!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Corn-syrup free Easter Treats

As I mentioned before, my older daughter can't have anything that has corn or corn syrup in it. (Well, I guess my younger one can't, either LOL). So in search of an easter treat for her, I came across a recipe for homemade Peeps:

  • 1 envelope unflavored gelatin (2 1/2 teaspoons)
  • 1/3 cup cold water, for gelatin (I added a couple of drops of lemon extract and I think vanilla would be good, too).
  • 1/4 cup water for syrup
  • 1 cup sugar
  1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, sprinkle gelatin over 1/3 cup cold water. Allow gelatin to soften, about 5 minutes.
  2. In a small saucepan, combine 1/4 cup water and sugar, and stir over medium-high heat until sugar is dissolved. Stop stirring, and place a candy thermometer into sugar water; wipe sides of pan with a wet brush if sugar crystals have splattered up. Boil sugar until temperature reaches the soft-ball stage (238F). Remove syrup from heat; add to softened gelatin. Using the whisk attachment of an electric mixer, hand-stir the mixture a few minutes to cool; place bowl on the mixer stand. Beat on medium high with the whisk attachment until soft peaks form and the marshmallow mixture holds shape, 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. Transfer marshmallow mixture to a large (14-inch) pastry bag fitted with a 1/2 inch (No. 11 Ateco) tip, and use immediately. I didn't hve a pastry bag with a large enough tip, so I just used a large zip-loc bag and cut off the corner.
Then you make them into peeps - I basically followed this set of instructions. Here are some results. It wasn't too hard to do and I think with a proper pastry bag it would have been awesome. My peeps and bunnies have no eyes yet because I haven't gotten around to putting them on, and they're sitting on corn-starch free powdered sugar to set.
For next time, when it isn't easter, I think I will try this recipe:

Homemade Marshmallows

2 env. (2 tbs.) unflavored gelatin
1 1/4 c. water
2 c. sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. powdered sugar

Soften gelatin in 3/4 cup of water and set aside. Place remaining 1/2 cup water and granulated sugar in medium sized saucepan. Cook until small amount dropped in cold water forms soft ball (240 degrees F). Remove syrup from heat, add softened gelatin and stir until almost cold. Add salt and flavoring. Beat until syrup is white and thick (8 minutes with an electric beater). Pour to 1 inch thickness in two 8 inch square pans that have been greased and dusted with powdered sugar. Let set in cool place about an hour -- do not place in refrigerator. Turn out on board that has been well dusted with powdered sugar. Cut into 1 inch cubes.