Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Spaetzle Baked with Ham and Gruyere

Spaetzle counts as pasta, right? I sure hope so, because this tasty comforting dinner is my entry to this week's Presto Pasta Night, hosted by the lovely Ruth!!

I had ripped this out of a Cooking Light magazine from 2004! I have been going through my stack of saved recipes and either making them or tossing them. I'm glad that this one made the cut!

I always enjoy spaetzle in restaurants, but I'd never made it at home. Wasn't too tricky, but boy, is it one sloppy process! I spilled the dough all over the place! I used a pasta insert in place of the colander, and it was a touch bigger than my pan, so yah, messy messy.

However, messy messy = tasty tasty! The dainty, soft spaetzle was so nice with the ham and cheese. The ham was cut into a fine dice, so it was really easy to get some ham, onion, and spaetzle with each spoonful. The gruyere was a great choice, it melted beautifully and bound it all together. I would maybe include a little extra cheese in the milk mixture, but only because I like it. :)

Pop on over to Ruth's blog, Once Upon A Feast Friday for the round-up!

Spaetzle Baked with Ham and Gruyere
c/o Cooking Light magazine, April 2004

1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
2 1/4 cups 1% low-fat milk, divided
4 large eggs, divided
2 quarts water
Cooking spray
1 cup finely chopped onion
3/4 cup finely diced ham (about 4 ounces)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3/4 cup (3 ounces) shredded Gruyère cheese

Preheat oven to 375°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Sift together 1 2/3 cups flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and baking powder. Combine 3/4 cup milk and 2 eggs, stirring with a whisk. Add milk mixture to flour mixture, stirring with a whisk until combined. Let stand 10 minutes.

Bring 2 quarts water to a boil in a large saucepan. Hold a colander with large holes (about 1/4-inch in diameter) over boiling water; spoon about 1/2 cup dough into colander. Press the dough through holes with a rubber spatula (droplets will form spaetzle); set colander aside. Cook 3 minutes or until done (spaetzle will rise to surface). Remove with a slotted spoon; drain in a strainer (spaetzle will stick to a paper towel). Repeat procedure with remaining dough.

Heat a medium nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium heat. Add onion; cook 5 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring frequently. Remove from heat; stir in ham. Combine spaetzle and onion mixture in a 2-quart baking dish coated with cooking spray, tossing gently.

Combine remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 1/2 cups milk, 2 eggs, 2 tablespoons flour, and pepper, stirring with a whisk. Pour milk mixture over spaetzle mixture. Sprinkle evenly with cheese. Bake at 375° for 35 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned.

Yield: 6 servings (serving size: about 1 cup)

Nutritional info: cals 310, fat 9.6g, sat fat 4.4g, protein 18.8g, cholesterol 165mg, calcium 288mg, sodium 786mg, fiber 1.5g, iron 2.4mg, carbs 35.7g


chou said...

I love cooking light. :) Do you think the recipe would be good if I swapped in some whole wheat flour?

Deborah said...

I always thought you had to have a special tool to make spaetzle - I never knew you could do it with a colander! I really want to try this one!

Katie B. said...

Chou - totally! I only recently switched back from white whole wheat, so odds are, that's what I made these with!

Deborah - I know! I had no idea it would be so easy to make!

Vicki said...

Great-looking recipe!
A large-holed cheese grater works well for spaetzle too, as long as it's not the box kind.

Ruth Daniels said...

Great dish and - of course spaetzle counts as pasta! Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Nights.

Anna said...

i love central european style dishes. they're so rich and hearty.
this looks like a perfect dish for cool weather.

myriam said...

hi love. i am a strong believer in the colander when my spaetzlemaker is not available. i love how cheesy this one is. you know i would eat just about anything with gruyere cheese. yum!