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Whole Wheat Spaetzle With Butternut Squash

Whole Wheat Spaetzle with Butternut Squash - A wonderful, savory meatless meal!

Spaetzle are delicious, soft, noodle-like, little dumplings that are commonly found in German and Austrian cuisines. Pronounced “SHPAYT-zlee” – attempting to make homemade spaetzle has been on both Jack’s and my ‘culinary bucket list’ for a long time – so we recently gave it a try!

As we often like to do, we wanted to put our own spin on a classic recipe – so Jack came up with the idea to make a Whole Wheat Spaetzle with Butternut Squash.  We infused the whole wheat spaetzle dough with a generous amount of finely minced fresh herbs – including sage, thyme and rosemary – which gave the dumplings amazing flavor, then tossed it with chunks of roasted butternut squash in a buttery sauce infused with more fresh herbs and cheese.

Whole Wheat Spaetzle with Butternut Squash - A wonderful, savory meatless meal!

Making spaetzle is actually quite easy! You essentially push a soft, pasta-like dough through small holes of your chosen ‘spaetzle-making tool’ right into boiling water to cook.  You can buy a  specifically-designed spaetzle make (like this one).  Some people make their spaetzle using a potato ricer, a metal colander with holes, or – you can use a box grater like we did.

Whole Wheat Spaetzle with Butternut Squash - A wonderful, savory meatless meal!

We simply spooned some of the dough into the inside of the box grater, then used a rubber spatula to push the dough through the holes right into the boiling water!  The spaetzel cooks very quickly – in about three minutes – similar to other fresh pastas.

This Whole Wheat Spaetzle with Butternut Squash can be served as a delicious meatless entrée or as a side dish.  You can get creative by swapping in different types of spices and herbs, and with different sauces too.

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Whole Wheat Spaetzle With Butternut Squash

Note: Please don’t be put off by the lengthy ingredients list – this Whole Wheat Spaetzle with Butternut Squash is actually very easy to make! Many of the same ingredients are used at different stages of preparing this recipe so we list it separately for each step.

  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4-6 servings

Ingredients

Roasted squash

  • 1 pound peeled butternut squash cut into one inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh sage

Spaetzle dough

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper
  • ½ teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh sage
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter to coat cooked Spaetzle

Other ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup onion diced
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon minced fresh sage
  • ½ teaspoon minced fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
  • ½ cup chicken or vegetable stock
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Place the squash, oil, salt, pepper and sage in a small bowl and toss. Then pour out onto a small sheet pan and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
  3. While squash is roasting, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  4. In a medium bowl, combine flour, salt, pepper, nutmeg, sage, thyme, rosemary and grated cheese.
  5. In a small bowl beat milk and eggs.
  6. Add the wet to the dry and mix to form the dough.
  7. Once the water comes to a boil, take a box grater and hold over the hot water with the large holes facing down. Using a rubber spatula, scoop about a third of the dough and press it into the box grater through the large holes into the water. Cook that batch three minutes and remove to a clean bowl and drizzle with a little of the melted butter. Then pour onto a platter or large plate. Repeat for the remaining dough using one third per batch and again into the bowl with butter then onto the plate. Place the plate in the refrigerator to stop the cooking process.
  8. Once the squash is out of the oven, heat a large sauté pan or skillet over medium heat and add the three tablespoons of butter, the one tablespoon of oil and the onions. Sauté for four minutes or until translucent then add garlic. Sauté for one more minute and add sage, thyme, rosemary, chicken stock, cooked squash plus any pan drippings and cooked Spaetzle. Toss a few times and add Parmesan, salt and pepper and reduce heat to medium.
  9. Cook over medium for about 3 or 4 minutes until the liquid is absorbed.
  10. Remove from heat and serve.

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Whole Wheat Spaetzle with Butternut Squash - A wonderful, savory meatless meal!

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