I would say, I am a good cook. A lot of people told me so and I am quite satisfied with the results of my ambitions. I think, basically everybody can learn cooking as long as you have fun doing it! And, indeed, it’s about failing and trying over and over again, but succeeding is such a wonderful feeling!
Yesterday, I had this deeply need to eat napkin or bread dumplings. In German, we say Serviettenknoedel that is just the same.
As far as I remember I always loved the bread dumpling my mother used to make as a side dish to the Sunday roast. It has always been a miracle to me, how good slushy, squishy toast can taste. There are several ways to make it, but also several ways eat it. Sweet or hearty, as a side dish or the meal itself. I think, my mother relies mostly at the Bohemian way to cook them and I would like to share it with you.
What you need
- sharp knife
- cutting board
- cloth napkin or a dish towel
- sieve or drip grid
- spoon or something like that to stir the dough
- pot with water
- 200g toast bread/white bread
- 250 ml milk
- 1 egg (size M)
- 2 spoons of butter
- salt, pepper, nutmeg, parsley
Step by step to the napkin dumpling
First, cut the bread into cubes. You can leave the crust on it as this will make the dumpling really tasty and a bit marbled. After that, put them into a pan and roast them until some of them are brownish. While doing this, heat the milk a bit up until it is tepid
Fill the cubes into a bowl and add the milk. Mix it, but carefully as we don’t want to make a smooth and dough. Some bigger pieces should survive the procedure. When the mixture is a bit colder, you can add the complete egg. It is very important that the dough is not hot, because otherwise the egg will thicken. Add some salt, pepper, nutmeg and parsley (you can also add the spices before adding the egg, so you can have a try and figure put whether you have to add more). Now, you can already put the pot with water on the oven so it can start boiling.
The dough should be sticky and look slimy, but bigger pieces should still be visible.
The next step is to prepare the napkin. Take some butter and lubricate the napkin/towel with it. I think you can somehow estimate how much space the dough will need and I usually make the place a bit bigger.
Now, you can put the dough on it, but as we want to cut it in pieces when it is done, you can really form a bread-like shape.
Now, wrap the napkin around it and close the ends of it by using yarn. An insider tip is to leave some space between the dumpling and the place you want to cord it, because the dumpling will get a bit bigger.
When the water is boiling, add some salt and then you can launch the dumpling and set a timer for 15 minute.
Turn the dumpling over, when the time is over and set another 15 minutes. After 30 minutes, you have to carefully touch the package. If it still feels very soft and liquid, it needs more time, if it feels like white bread, you can remove it using the skimmer and put the dumpling into a sieve or a grid. After it cooled down, you can cut the yarn and open the napkin. If you want, you can cut the dumpling into slices and eat them like this or as a side dish.
I like to roast them again in some butter until they are brown and have a thin crust. You can also add some herbs to the butter. If you want to make them sweet, I wouldn’t add pepper and nutmeg in the first steps…
After that, it is finished. 🙂 It tastes very well when you add some gravy or cream sauce with mushrooms.