Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Hasselback potatoes and Ofenschlupfer...

Today we are touching a bit of a "food history" from Sweden and Germany. History because these classical dishes accompanied us for many years, made us happy and are still giving us a certain comfort every time I am preparing them. Both dishes are humble and simple, exactly how the old fashioned homemade food should be. 

Starting with the hasselback potatoes "Swedish roasted potatoes", something my husband already loved as a kid. I have to say, my husband is not much of a potato eater, similar to me, however if potatoes are prepared this ways, we both cannot resist. Usually it would be his mom preparing this dish for us and I remember the first time I have tried them, I surprisingly discovered that I actually do like potatoes and that potatoes are not as boring as I thought before...this silky buttery taste makes you eat one piece after another and you will see that all of sudden the meat is not the star on the plate anymore....


Hasselback potatoes
  • 4-5 middle size potatoes (make sure they are more or less all the same size)
  • 1-2 tablespoons bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • salt and pepper
  • olive oil
Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease your baking dish with olive oil. Peel the potatoes and cut in slices stopping right before you are cutting through, so the slices stay connected on the bottom of the potato. Brush the potatoes with melted butter (be generous) season with salt and pepper. Finally sprinkle the bread crumbs all over the potatoes and bake for 40 minutes (or golden brown and the fork goes easy through)..This side dish can be served to meat, chicken or fish or even with some other vegetable if you like.

What I personally like about this dish most are the nice memories of my husband, he would always mentioned eating the potatoes. Our son Pablo like them too, I am not quite sure he understand already that this dish is quite dear to us, but maybe one day he will remember the stories his daddy was telling, having his special memories connected to this dish too.

Now coming to my favorite "old fashioned" dish, which is meanwhile our family favorite dessert. Ofenschlupfer "Swabian bread pudding". It was not in my childhood I tried it the first, more in my younger years when I moved from North Germany to South of Germany, to be more specific to Stuttgart area in Swabia, where Ofenschlupfer is coming from. There are many different ways to prepare a bread pudding all over Germany, but this dish is a bit different in the preparation and definitely my favorite when in comes to bread pudding. I fell in love with Swabia pretty quick, I love the modest way people are living there, they have their certain ways of doing things for sure and sometimes you would not understand what they are saying, but exactly these special characteristic are so charming and irresistible. Most of the swabian people don´t like waste...wste of money, food, time etc. and to me Ofenschlupfer represents all the characteristics of swabian people..humble, simple, homey and still somehow special....


Ofenschlupfer
  • white bread / baguette from the day before (about 2/3 of a baguette)
  • 350 ml milk hot
  • 50 g butter room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 60 g sugar
  • 2 apples
  • cinnamon / or vanilla sugar
Preheat the oven to 180C and grease your baking dish with butter. Cut the baguette in big chunks, put it in a bigger bowl and pour over the hot milk, put it aside. Meanwhile in a smaller bowl, crag the eggs, add sugar and cinnamon (or vanilla) mix till combined. Peel the apples and cut them in small pieces. Add the apples, egg mixture and the butter to the bread soaked in milk and mix everything together....with your hands! Don´t over mix it, you should still see some chunk of bread in your dough muxture. Pour the mixture into the baking dish and bake for 40 minutes or till golden brown.
Serve hot with vanilla sauce (they way it is done in Swabia) or vanilla ice cream.

Enjoy!



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