Semmelknödel are round bread dumplings from Austria and South Germany.
Prepare your own semmelknoedel and serve with Sauerkraut, ribs and Sausages or Sauerbraten.
I talked about Semmeknödel years ago where I showed you how to cook homemade fermented Sauerkraut.
What are Semmelknödel?
Semmelknödel are dumplings prepared with dried pieces of stale bread.
Authentic Semmelknödel are made with Semmel or so-called Kaisersemmel, which are bread rolls from Austria and Bavaria.
However, Semmelknödel can be prepare with any other white bread roll too, as long as the bread is dried stale.
The stale bread pieces are then mixed with egg, sauteed onion, and seasonings before they are shaped into equal sized round dumplings.
These are then boiled and served as a side dish with pork meat and cabbage or other local specialties such as wild game and red cabbage.
The ingredients for the homemade authentic bread dumplings are straightforward.
You can use stale bread at home and cut or break it into the size of a dice.
The bread has to be white bread and needs to be properly stale and dried or else it won't be able to suck in the flavors and seasoning.
Wet bread results in soggy dumplings, who will fall apart during the cooking process.
So that the dumplings hold together you will need an egg, milk and some white flour.
That way the dumplings will turn out soft without falling apart and the seasoning will be equally spread out.
Seasoning & flavor giving ingredients
Onions are an imporant ingredients in the Semmeknoedel.
The onion slices are however first sauteed in some butter to bring out the sharp flavors.
The dumplings are further enhanced with the addition of salt, black pepper, a pinch of nutmeg and freshly chopped parsley.
How to make it?
To prepare the Semmelknödel from scratch you will need to follow these simple steps.
All ingredients are added to a large bowl and mixed together.
Use your hands or a kitchen machine to blend and mash the ingredients properly.
Bring a pot of water with salt to boil.
The dumplings are shaped into balls and dropped into the boiling water.
The Knödel dumplings cook in the boiling water and are taken out once they swim on the surface.
Drip off excess water and serve with various local meals
- with cooked Sauerkraut Sausages or Ribs
- with coleslaw and vinegar dressing
- with Bavarian potato salad and Sauerbraten
- with red cabbage and wild game and mushrooms
- in clear soup and a green salad
- with Hunter's Schnitzel and Chanterelle Mushrooms
Other local dumpling varieties
- Serviettenknödel (similar to Semmelknödel)
- Bratknödel (with beef)
- Speckknödel (with lard/bacon)
- Pressknödel (cheesy press dumplings)
- Potato dumplings
- Biskuitschöberl - Diamond-shaped herb biscuit dumplings
- Marillenknödel (sweet dessert apricot dumplings)
Dear reader, how did you serve up your Semmelknödel?
For the dumpling mass
To cook dumplings
- Heat up a pan with the butter and cook the chopped onion until translucent and soft.
- Grab a large mixing bowl and add in the sautéed chopped onion, bread pieces, milk, egg, all purpose flour, salt, black pepper, nutmeg and parsley.
- Mix everything together and mash together with your hands until all ingredients are well incorporated.
- Leave the bread dumpling mass to rest for about 15 minutes.
- Prepare a large pot with water and salt and bring to a boil.
- Shape your dumplings into equal sized balls.
- Drop the semmelknödel dumplings into the cooking water. Reduce the heat of the water so that the water won't boil up too much or else the movement can open up the dumplings. The water should be cooking but not vigorously.
- Cook the dumplings for about 8-10 minutes. They will swim on top.
- Take out the knödel from the cooking water and strain.
- Serve still hot as a side dish with other local meals.