Far Guy and I came to a cooking agreement about 7 years ago. I had cooked for us for 35 years. I am not a good cook, I didn’t enjoy it..the only part of cooking I like is the eating part.
The agreement was Far Guy would take over for the next 35 years..I figured that would get us well into the nursing home years where meals are provided.
Far Guy does really good, we keep the list on the fridge of menu choices that he can pick and choose from. Approximately two days a week I cook, because he used to cook on his days off during the first 35 years of our life together. The girls made it through his experiments with French Meatballs, Gumbo that even our dog Snuffer wouldn’t eat and Bean Hotdish that had some kind of hot sauce in it that made the girls cry.
Last night was my night, it started off on the wrong foot..as my half hour nap turned into a three and an half hour sleep. So that is exactly how long it took me to cook supper three and a half hours..what was I cooking..well it was a cheap steak that was baked in the oven, it was to be all tender and smothered in brown gravy to be plunked on a bed of spaetzle, accompanied by mixed peas and carrots. Spaetzle is a German Noodle or Dumpling if you prefer to call it that..I call it a noodle.
The last two times I attempted Spaetzle from scratch it was a dish washing nightmare. Trica said “ Mom anyone can do spaetzle, you just mix it up and push it through a strainer into the boiling water.” Easy for her to say..I tried it..two gunked up strainers later I just threw clumps of dough into the water..it was edible. Obviously I am not just “anyone.”
Then I read that you could use a ricer to make the noodles. Now I had a ricer upstairs someplace..I located it and gave it a whirl…noodle dough just gunked up those little holes. I then stood above the water and with a spoon dropped strings of noodle dough into the water. They were edible ..but not pretty.
I went back to purchased spaetzle imported from Germany. One box was 5 dollars. It really irked me that I could not conquer those noodles. Both of my daughters make them for their families..why am I a noodle failure? What am I not getting?
A Christmas Jen brought over her spaetzle maker to make spaetzle for her Dad. It looked easy to me, she whipped those noodles up and had them in the pot in no time. They were great! “Easy peasy..even you can do it Mom.”
Far Guy and I looked for our very own spaetzle maker, we finally found one in Grand Forks at the Home of Economy…that is where Jen got hers. 10 dollars..well after two bunches of noodles I will be saving money…and dreams of being a perfect spaetzle maker are dancing in my head. I can do this..I CAN make spaetzle for Far Guy.
Spaetzle is a simple recipe, three eggs whipped till they are frothy, then add a cup of milk and then slowly add three cups of flour and a dash of salt..(Nutmeg is optional) we don’t like nutmeggy noodles. I opened the cupboard and said a “bad word”..I was out of flour.. but I did have some special blend flour half white/ half wheat for the bread maker. Wheat flour should be ok..it will just make those noodles healthier.
At 7PM Chance is beside himself..he is hungry and I am not moving supper along fast enough for him. He is underfoot and obnoxious..finally Far Guy feeds him..he refuses to eat until I say “ You better eat while you can, because I am not sure when supper will be done.” Looking guilty he wolfs down his food.
Supper was fashionably late way after 8PM, but only after I created a floury mess and was asked “Honey, what is burning?” It was spaetzle that had escaped the maker and ended up on the cook top. About that time Far Guy broke a bowl, Chance and I both in our bare feet were relegated to a small portion of the kitchen right in front of the stove that was safe from slivers of glass. After Far Guy cleaned up that mess I asked for help using the spaetzle maker.. when he got the last of the noodles pushed through. He said “Perhaps we should just go back to the old ways, I will cook and you can just tell me how to do it.”
The spaetzle was a hit, Far Guy loved it..I thought it was really good too. However I did close my eyes while eating it as it kind of looks like oatmeal..possible the whole wheat flour effect..but I can make noodles! :)