My mother's side of the family is German, and our immediate ancestors are Germans from Russia. It is a very distinct culture, taking parts from both German and Russian culture. The food therefore is somewhat unique as well, also taking traditional German fare and putting a Russian/Ukranian/Tatar twist to some of it. In future episodes I'm going to talk more about some of that food, but today I'm going to tackle a very simple recipe that my mom would make often. One of my fondest food memories from growing up is from when mom would make egg noodles.
I know egg noodles doesn't sound too exotic but they are a very common and popular dish in German Russian culture. I can remember mom mixing the dough with her hands, and then spreading flour over that orange kitchen counter. She'd turn the dough and knead it until it became smooth. Then she would divide the dough into four sections and put three aside, then roll out one into a large round disk of dough. When it was of suitable size, she would crack the door of the preheated oven open with a wooden spoon, then she would put the rolled -out dough on a kitchen towel, with part of it hanging into the open oven door to dry. She would rotate it to make sure it dried evenly. She would move on to another section of dough and repeat. When the dough was dried, she would roll it up and then slice into noodles. This was my favorite part, as I would reach over and steal a noodle or two to eat right there (my dad would always do the same), and I can still hear my mom feigning anger and telling us not to eat all the noodles! As I said, this recipe isn't that different from most egg noodles recipes, but I'm sure this was passed down through my mom's side of the family at least four generations back.
You don't need any fancy equipment to make egg noodles, and once you have them made you should either use them right away, or freeze them. If you elect to freeze them, be sure to freeze them in a single layer on a metal sheet pan for about 15 minutes before transferring to a freezer bag (this will ensure they won't freeze together in one big clump).
Egg noodles go great in chicken noodle soup, so now would be a good time to talk about roasting chicken and making chicken stock. Here are a couple recipes to get you going with that:
Chicken noodle soup recipes:
If you are in need of a roasting pan, a stock pot, or pasta maker, here are some recommendations: Cuisinart Chef's Classic Stainless 16-Inch Rectangular Roaster with Rack
Marcato Atlas Wellness 150 Pasta Maker, Stainless Steel - this is the pasta machine I use--it's simple but incredible well built, and will last you a lifetime. Comes in different colors, and has many different pasta cutter attachments.
If you are interested in learning more about Germans from Russia, I would suggest visiting the Germans From Russia Heritage Society at www.grhs.org.Connect with The Kitchen Counter Podcast!
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