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Guest Post: The Saucy Schnitzel is Back!

a woman sitting at a table with foodHello again – I’m Linnea, one of the guides for Cincinnati Food Tours and I love to talk about and make food! I’ve also started a Facebook page called “The Saucy Schnitzel” so you can see what else I’m cooking up.

Several years ago, our friends Andrea and Scott Robbins, who I knew through working at Findlay Market’s Market Wines, announced they were starting an exciting new venture – becoming cheesemakers!  Not only that, but they were going to open a tasting room/shop in the city!  What became Urban Stead Cheese in East Walnut Hills (which just recently celebrated their third anniversary), has grown into a business that is known for well-crafted signature cheeses, beautiful charcuterie boards, and a source for locally grown and produced artisanal food products.

a cup of coffee on a tableBut to me, the biggest draw has been that they make Quark, a semi-soft cheese long used in Northern European countries as an ingredient in many recipes or just spread on good, crusty rye bread with a sprinkle of chopped chives on the top (my favorite!).  As a child, our family traveled to Germany to visit our relatives and some of my fondest memories were morning trips to the bakery to pick up fresh brötchen (breakfast rolls) that my sister and I promptly slathered with quark and Nutella…and then inhaled.

As a way to honor my parent’s memories, I have been on a mission  to learn and share some of the traditional German recipes that I grew up eating and loving.  With a ready supply of quark now available to me (seriously…this was like discovering a German unicorn), I’ve been experimenting with the many ways you can use this versatile cheese in your every day recipes.

On a recent weekend, I decided to try making quark balls – little, golf-ball sized doughnuts dredged in cinnamon and sugar or powdered sugar, that are crispy on the outside and pillowy tender on the inside.  Perfect for brunch or a little break with an afternoon cup of coffee.

a man and a woman sitting at a tableI enlisted my teenage nephews in this endeavor and they agreed this might be a fun idea.  The dough itself was quite simple – just quark, eggs, sugar, vanilla, cornstarch, baking powder and flour.  After making the dough, it cools and rests for a bit and then we formed the balls and deep-fried them in batches in an electric skillet.  Be sure to use a kitchen thermometer to keep the oil hot at a steady temperature.  Finally, we sprinkled some with powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar while they were still a little warm.  (We also sprinkled some with both because…why not?).  We all pronounced them as quite “Lecker” – which means “Very Yummy” in German.a bowl of food

A great web-site for learning about some traditional German recipes and where I got this recipe is “The Oma Way” – her directions are excellent and she includes pictures that show you step-by-step how to make these dishes.  Give some a try!