Friday, February 19, 2010

Let’s Dish German

Today's blog entry is a request. Rachel wanted to hear more about Germany and suggested a German recipe. So today we're going to talk about Rouladen (pronounced rue-lah-den). It is my second favorite German dish (I couldn't find the recipe for my favorite but I'll ask my neighbor and post it soon). 

This dish is a treat, usually reserved for birthdays and holidays but it is so good. I'm sure the side dishes vary from area to area here. My neighbors, for example, serve it with potato dumplings the size of baseballs. When I had it at a Christmas party a couple of months ago, it was served with spaetzle (German noodles). I'm not a huge fan of the dumplings so I prefer the spaetzle. Here's the recipe for both rouladen and spaetzle.

Rouladen ingredients:

  • 6 slices of top round – have the butcher cut it into thin slices about 3/8 inch thick and at least 6 inches by 4 inches. Pound it until it is about 1/8 – 1/4 inch thick, careful not to put holes in it.
  • 3 slices of bacon
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 3 garlic dill pickles, sliced
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • Mustard, salt, pepper, cornstarch
  • 1-2 cups water


  • Season beef slices with salt and pepper. Thinly spread mustard on top of each slice.
  • Divide bacon, pickle and onion slices on one end of each slice.
  • Roll up slices, tucking the ends in and securing with skewers, wooden cocktail picks, or thread.
  • Heat butter in a skillet. Brown rouladen well on all sides. Do not crowd them in the skillet or they won't brown nicely. Add extra butter as needed. Remove rouladen.
  • Once all rouladen are browned, add 1-2 cups of hot water, gently stirring up browned bits. Return all rouladen and any accumulated juices to the skillet. Bring to a simmer and cover, allowing to simmer for about 1 1/2 hours.
  • Remove rouladen. To thicken gravy, combine about 1-2 tbsp. corn starch in a little cold water and stir gently into cooking liquid until slightly thickened.
  • Season gravy to taste with salt and pepper. You can add sour cream if you wish.
  • Remove skewers (or picks or thread) and serve rouladen with its gravy.

Spaetzle ingredients:

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 eggs
  • About 1/2 cup water


  • Mix flour and salt in a bowl.
  • Add eggs and mix well.
  • Gradually add just enough water to make a smooth, light, and firm dough.
  • Let dough stand for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to boil.
  • Push dough through the largest holes of a grater or metal colander directly into the boiling water.
  • Noodles will float when they are done. Remove with a slotted spoon.

You can eat them with gravy or buttered.

Have you either of these dishes? How did you like it? What's your favorite German dish?



Shayla Kersten said...

I've had both and they are excellent. Although my favorite German food played into my fast food addiction. LOL Imbissstands! I was addicted to currywurst! And pommes frites mit mayo.

I love the internet. I googled the phrase and look what I found!

Riley Quinn said...

Yes, I love currywurst too! I've found little packets of curry sauce powder in the Rewe markets so it's easy to make your own. I can send you a few if you're interested.

GPS said...

I've had spaetzle and I like it a lot. The Rouladen looks yummy. My husband is the cook, I'm saving these recipes for him. I also like warm German potato salad, Wienerschnitzel and red cabbage. I like everything that' why I need to lose twenty pounds.

Jae Lynne Davies said...

Wow, this looks delicious! My husband will love Rouladen and I'll have to make it over the next week. He'll be so excited!

Thanks for sharing,

Jae Lynne

Rachel Lynne said...

Yummy, pickles in beef sounds interesting. Here in the south they batter and deep fry pickles, course in the south they deep fry everything! I'll have to try this soon. I am particularly intrigued by the spaetzle.
My favorite German food is Sauerkraut and my husband says to add his: BEER!

Riley Quinn said...

Yes, the pickles are pretty unique but they add a great flavor.

I'm so glad everyone had enjoyed the recipes. I'll try to post one on a regular basis. Maybe every month or two weeks or something.

Gretchen said...

This is something my mother always made when I was growing up. In fact there's some leftovers in the fridge right now. You can have the butcher run the meat through a tenderizer too and save your countertops. I usually save the leftover flour and spices mixture that I dredged the beef in while I was pounding it to make the gravy with. Sometimes I throw some extra onions in or a bit of onion soup mix though that can make it a little salty.

I didn't like the pickles so much when I was a kid but now it's part of the flavor. The worst part is the string. I used a bunch of toothpicks last time and it made it a bit hard to brown but otherwise put me firmly in "the way back machine."

Jana Richards said...

My daughter who has visited Germany a few times has made rouladen for us. I'm going to send her your recipe. I'm sure she'll love it.


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