I grew up in England and my earliest memories are of sitting on the worktop, watching and tasting everything my German mother cooked. We frequently went to Germany to visit relatives, when I would learn from my grandmother also. I still visit Germany as often as I can, always with a list of dishes that I have to eat while I’m there, and Maultaschen, Kartoffelsalat, and Pilz Knödel are permanent fixtures. I’m always on a quest to recreate these dishes; simple rich maultaschen dumplings swimming in beef broth, the perfect kartoffelsalat, and the staple of Stuttgart, spätzle, which is so beloved it has its own festival in the Alps.
– Mark Southon
Maultaschen (German-style Ravioli)
For the broth:
- 1kg beef knuckle
- 1 onion, peeled and halved
- 1 garlic clove, peeled
- 2 tbsp finely sliced chives, to garnish
For the pasta dough:
- 400g plain flour
- Pinch of salt
- 3 large eggs
- Approximately 3 tsp water
For the filling:
- 2 stale baps or 3 slices white bread, diced
- Splash of milk
- 300g beef mince
- 250g pork mince
- 2 large onions, finely chopped
- 1 large handful parsley, chopped
- Salt and pepper
- 1/2 a nutmeg, freshly grated
- 4 eggs
- Small splash of oil
- Kartoffelsalat (Potato Salad)
Prepare the broth:
Place bones in a large pot for which you have a lid and pour in at least 4 litres water, plus more as needed to cover the bones by 5cm. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes, skimming off any foam that rises to the top. Add onion and garlic, place the lid on, and simmer for 3-4 hours until very flavoursome. Strain and reserve until needed. You will need 1 1/2 litres of broth for this recipe (plus 4-5 teaspoons for the Kartoffelsalat); leftover broth can be refrigerated or frozen for another use.
Prepare the pasta dough:
Sift flour and salt together onto a clean working bench. Use your hands to pat into a round and make a well in the centre. Crack the eggs into the centre, break the yolks, and use the tips of your fingers to gently draw the flour into the eggs, mixing until the flour and eggs have been incorporated. Add a little water as needed to form a slightly soft but not sticky dough. Knead dough for about 10 minutes until smooth and elastic. Pat into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes before using.
Prepare the filling:
Place bread into a small bowl and add milk to slightly soften.
Mix both minces, onion, and parsley in a bowl and season generously with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Stir in eggs one by one until well mixed. Stir in bread.
Heat oil in a small pan on a medium heat. Add a teaspoon of filling and cook for a minute, then taste. Adjust seasoning as needed.
Roll pasta dough on a lightly floured work surface into a large rectangle 2mm thick. Cut into smaller strips 30cm x 20cm. Divide the filling between the strips, laying it out in a thin sausage along the length of the dough, a bit lower than halfway down. Fold the uncovered half of the dough down over the filling. Push on the dough at 10cm intervals to separate the filling inside into mounds. Gently press the dough around the mounds and on the edges to seal the dough around the filling. Cut between each mound to create sealed square parcels of filled dough.
Heat 1 1/2 litres broth in a large pan until simmering. Add filled maultaschen parcels and gently simmer in the broth for 10-15 minutes until pasta is tender and filling inside is piping hot and cooked through. Divide broth and maultaschen between individual bowls, sprinkle with chives, and serve with potato salad on the side.
- The broth can be made ahead of time, and in larger batches, then refrigerated or frozen. This will make the dish faster and easier to assemble