plate 2 plate - kaiserschmarrn

Have you ever heard of a dish called Kaiserschmarrn? Until Juliana suggested this as our dish for July's Plate 2 Plate blog post, neither had I. This is what it looks like, made and photographed by Juliana.

From what I've read the dish was originally created for the Austrian Emperor's wife. She asked her chef to come up with a light dessert and the fluffy little dumplings he created did not fit the bill but the Emperor loved the dessert so much he ate it all by himself. This recipe for Kaiserschmarrn comes from a book by Konditorei Zauner which Juliana kindly translated from German into English for me.

I found this recipe challenging because I didn't have a reference point as I'd not seen or tasted Kaiserschmarrn before. 

I found a few recipes online and Zauner's recipe was the only one that pre-cooked the milk and flour before adding the egg whites. Most of the other recipes made a pancake like batter and after frying the pancake on one side the cooking process was completed in the oven. 

I decided to make a test batch and found the quantity of flour daunting so I halved it before cooking off the milk and flour. When I cooked the flour and milk, it just turned into Perkin's Paste (a thick paper glue from my childhood for those non Australian readers). Juliana thinks European flour is probably a little different from Australian flour because she didn't have the same problem.

The batter tasted a bit bland so I added a little knob of butter, some vanilla and a tablespoon of sugar before folding in the beaten egg whites. The end result was like a souffle omelette, lovely and pillow like in texture but it promptly deflated making it impossible to photograph. 

I returned to the drawing board, this time baking the pancake for 5 minutes before cutting the Kaiserschmarrn into pieces and gently frying the pancake pieces in butter and a little sugar. These were more sturdy and could be photographed but I actually preferred the soft pillowy ones. 

As it's winter in Sydney and apples are at their peak, I accompanied the Kaiserschmarrn with some apple I stewed with sultanas (golden raisins), also known as appletani by my friend's children. It made for a comforting winter dessert. Juliana served her kaiserschmarrn with blueberries. Her Swiss blueberries are so much more delicate than the monster blueberries we get here.

Here's the original recipe for you without any of my changes.

500 mls milk
250g flour
4 eggs, separated
1 pinch of salt
1 Tbs sugar
Butter for the skillet

Heat the milk with the flour and stir until a thick mush forms. Cool. Add the egg yolks and salt to the cooled flour mixture. Whip the egg whites with the sugar until stiff and carefully fold into the flour mixture.

Heat butter in a skillet and pour in half of the batter. Cover and cook until the underside is golden then flip and carefully tear the pancake apart with a fork. Repeat with the remaining batter. Serve warm with powdered sugar and cinnamon.

I'm a little jealous of Juliana's lovely vintage pewter plate, so here's one last photo of it.

I hope you enjoyed July's Plate 2 Plate post. Many thanks to Juliana for her lovely photos. You can read her blog post here.

See you all again next week with some more baking from my kitchen.

Bye for now,


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