I wanted to sample the Schinkennudeln (Pasta Gratin with Ham & Cheese) – Nick didn’t have this as a “must have” on his list…
a digression, not to be confused with digestion
By the way… Have you heard of the new cookbook that’s all over the blogosphere the last few weeks? It’s “Melt: The Art of Macaroni and Cheese” by Stephanie Stiavetti & Garret McCord…
This is the sort of cookbook that I would have bought immediately back in the days when I cooked all the time and when our combined weight was about 150 pounds heavier than today. Back then, I had a couple of go to from-scratch mac-n-cheese staples…
The first was from Fannie Farmer (another really great cookbook, I’ve been giving it as wedding gifts for the last 30 years)… Simply put… boil your pasta til al dente, make a béchamel sauce, add good cheese to sauce and melt it down, stir in drained pasta, eat… of course, you can put into a baking pan and top with more cheese and bake it… We usually just ate it immediately without baking.
The second came from my mom’s next-door neighbor Cathy… I tweaked it bit to suit our tastes…
2 cups uncooked pasta – cook it, drain it, put it back in the pot
1/2 stick butter or margarine – add to hot pasta in the pot and stir it around until it melts
2 cups shredded cheese, preferably cheddar – add to pot, and stir gently
in a separate bowl, whisk together the following ingredients:
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup milk
- a dash of hot sauce
- a pinch of dry mustard
put the pasta mixture into a greased baking pan, pour liquid mixture over it, top with 1/2 cup more cheese and buttered bread crumbs or crushed saltine crackers
bake until bubbly and golden
So, why am I talking about macaroni and cheese so much? Because schinkennudeln is macaroni and cheese (with some ham and onions thrown in…) To be more precise, it’s like that recipe above…
However, although this was tasty, it needed salt and the ham was virtually non-existent. Not that mac-n-cheese NEEDS ham, but if a dish is billed as having ham in it, I should be able to find the ham and taste the ham. Basically, this was a good pasta and cheese gratin.
The featured pairing at the Germany Marketplace paired this dish with the J&H Selbach Berkasteler Kurfurstlay Riesling Kabinett (all you need to remember from all that is “riesling kabinett” = delicate sweetness and mild acidity). I really liked the pairing and nick thought they went well together, although he thought the riesling was a bit too sweet on its own.
We still think that my rendition of this dish would be better. What can I say? I already told you that we used to weigh 150 pounds (combined) more than we do now, I’m a pretty good cook
UPDATE: On November 5th, AJ over at The Disney Food Blog posted a recipe for “Nudel Gratin” from Epcot’s Germany Pavilion, this is very much in line with my recipe above… so, I’m right
FURTHER UPDATE: I have since discovered that “Schinkennudlen” means “ham noodles” – the difference that I’ve seen on recipes is that it contains Swiss or Emmentaler cheese and sour cream instead of milk or heavy cream…