When you look up the word "mushroom" in an English-German dictionary you will find the word "Pilz". I have already told about slight differences in the German language spoken by Germans and Austrians, especially food-wise. See "Aprikose" and "Marille" (the latter will be the topic of quite a few posts to come soon, referring to the storm we are cooking up using the rich bounty of our old tree). However, when it comes to mushrooms the Austrians usually say "Schwammerl". Did I already mention that we Austrians love to use diminutives ? Well, "Schwamm" is "sponge". And "Schwammerl" is something like a small sponge. Knowing how much water mushrooms can absorb (and therefore should be cleaned but never washed under running water) and on the other hand they only grow when there is enough rainfall that's not a bad allegory. Well, there were lots of rain in May and the beginning of June this year, to everybody's surprise (and unlike the two past years) followed by weeks of warmth if not heat and lots of sunshine. Perfect conditions for "Eierschwammerl". Now, what's that ? "Ei" = "Egg", and you already know "Schwammerl" = "(little) mushroom". Eggmushroom ? Yellow mushrooms ! Cantharellus cibarius ! - Chanterelles ! By the way, they are called "Pfifferlinge" in "high" German. This time I want to present two true Austrian classics featuring Eierschwammerl to you, the second one even has to do with eggs literally. Enjoy !
- 3-5 shallots, finely diced
- 1 handful fresh thyme, optional
- 1 tbsp butter
- 500 g chanterelles, cleaned, bigger ones halved or quartered
- 250 ml sour cream
- 1 tsp starch flour ("Maizena")
- 1 tbsp sweet ground paprika ("Delikatesspaprika")
- 1/2 tsp hot ground paprika
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
In a wide pan melt the butter and first sauté the shallots until softened, then add the chanterelle mushrooms until golden brown and all the liquid has evaporated. Add salt and pepper to taste. Take the pan away from the stove top for a moment, sprinkle with the paprikas and stir them in (this should never be done when boiling since the paprika would get bitter). Return the pan to the stove. Thoroughly combine sour cream and starch flour and quickly add to the chanterelle mixture. Stir for another one or two minutes until the mixture has thickened and serve immediately.
Instead of traditional bread dumplings (Semmelknödel) I served the Eierschwammerlgulasch with the fantastic "Bread-Mushroom-Tartlets", but leaving out the mushrooms of course. Since the Eierschwammerlgulasch is cooked within some minutes the tartlets should be prepared ahead. Highly recommended !
("g'röste" is a dialect word for "geröstete" which can be translated by "roasted", "toasted" or "sautéd", depending on the featured ingredient; but I think the best description of this dish would be "Chanterelles with scrambled eggs". Ei-Eierschwammerl so-to-say ! ;-)
Serves 3-4 as a light meal or snack.
Start like in the recipe above (make sure to use a non-stick pan) until the chanterelles are golden-brown. Beat the eggs, season to taste and pour them over the sautèd mushrooms. Stir until the mixture is firm but still creamy. Serve on some toasted bread and decorate with chives. Enjoy !
Speaking about "G'röste" here goes another little recipe (belonging to Austrian everyday's home cooking). When you have some left over bread tartlets (see recipe on top) you can make "G'röste Knödel" (toasted - or roasted ? - or sautèd ? - dumplings). Sauté the slices in some butter until golden brown and crispy and then pour beaten eggs over them. Shake the pan until the eggs have got solid but still creamy. Don't talk about calories and cholesterol but enjoy (with a salad aside).
Have fun with (sometimes) featuring traditional (Austrian) recipes !