This is our 4th post as a part of the “Around the World in 12 Dishes” series! This month we visit Austria! Can you find Austria on a map? In which continent is it located? What language do they speak? (hint: it’s not “Austrian!”) What is the name of the majestic mountains that traverse the country?
When my husband and I were first married, we spent a couple of weeks in Salzburg and Vienna, Austria (he on business, me as tourist:). My sister happened to be studying in Italy, and came up to visit us in Vienna- the capital and largest city in Austria- for the week. We waltzed our way through Baroque and Gothic palaces and cathedrals, museums and open air cafes, and watched performances at the Opera House, the theatre, and listened to a Mozart performance. Mozart is not the only famous Austrian: in addition, Vienna was the home of Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert, Johann Strauss and Mahler over a period of 150 years!
Because of Austria’s history and location, it is a crossroads of multicultural cuisines, influenced by its neighbors and sometimes invadors: from Germany, sausages, roasts, and pastries; unique crepes and Gulasch from Hungary; a coffee culture from Turkey; Weiner Schnitzel from Milan. Yet Austrian food evolved to include the crops the grow best in the beautiful mountains and forests: dairy, grains such as wheat, pigs, etc.
Kaiserschmarrn: “Emperor’s Nonsense”
One part of the meal that really stood out to us were the desserts: frequently a variation of the pancake, with some sort of fruit. We asked some European friends for their favorite Austrian dessert, and they (almost unanimously) declared that we should make Kaiserschmarrn. The name itself it’s quite funny: “Kaiser” meaning “emperor,” and “Schmarrn,” meaning “nonsense” or “smear.” People say that it was made during the reign of Austrian Emperor Francis Joseph I (1830–1916), though no one is sure of the exact origins.
We chose to use this recipe from Bavarian Kitchen. Ricky got to use the mixer to beat the egg whites, and then he happily stirred together the other ingredients.
After all of it was mixed, I folded the whites into the other ingredients, and then we made our fluffy pancake. I’m going to be honest:)- I could not flip it over! It broke into several pieces, which fortunately did not affect the taste at all. Once it cooks through, you tear it to pieces and fry it in a bit of butter. Finally, dousing it with powdered sugar (Ricky prefers to do this while singing “It’s snowing!!!”).
We had this for an after-school snack, but I imagine making it for Sunday breakfast, or even a “breakfast for dinner.” It usually is served with a fruit sauce such as berries or applesauce. The light, spongy texture is amazing, and the eggs give it a boost of protein to fill you up. My kids were so excited to have this instead of their regular snacks:). Now it’s your turn!
Other Austrian Dishes
Visit Adventures In Mommydom, Creative Family Fun, Domestic Goddesque, Glittering Muffins, Here Come The Girls, Juggling with Kids, Kid World Citizen (me!), Kitchen Counter Chronicles, Mermaids’ Makings, Montessori Tidbits, Mummymummymum and The Educators’ Spin On It to get inspired! They will each help you on your food journey by cooking Austrian food with their children and posting about it. Then go out there, cook, blog, and join in the linky fun.
If you do this, we’d LOVE to see a photo of it. Email it to us or post it on our Facebook page. We’d love to do a Facebook album, a Pinterest board and a page of your creations .
Please link up your Austrian dish and/or craft in our linky below, we would love to see it!