July 8, 2014

My grandfather used to disappear into the woods for hours at a time and turned up with the most colorful and strange looking mushrooms he could find. My grandmother would always refuse to prepare them for him but he ate them anyway – and survived them all. One of my few memories I have of him is that I was allowed to join him on his hunt for mushrooms once. It turned out that a few hundred meters into the woods there was a skittle alley where he would always meet up with his friends. All the crazy mushrooms we collected on the way there and back. Nonetheless I had a great time and to the day I’m impressed that he could distinguish between poisonous and eatable mushrooms. Chanterelles – the mushrooms I used below – are about the only ones I dare to collect. I have to admit that I didn’t collect them myself. I usually only find some the size of my thumb nail.

The recipe is an Austrian classic. Traditionally the dumplings were made to use up old bread that got too dry. To get the dumplings with chanterelle sauce is quite rare since they have a very short season and are hard to get. But they are yummy with all kind of mushroom sauces or some Gulasch. As all things Austrian – it’s super filling. You won’t need to eat for hours and can do plenty of heavy lifting.

Down below I describe two versions on how you can make the dumplings. The ‘sissy’ version and the not quite so sissy ‘I’m feeling cocky today and try tiny little dumplings’ version. The dumplings are prepared in cooking water and the masters of dumpling making – my aunt – manages to make huge dumplings without them falling apart. The beginners – me – use the fool-proof way and wrap the dumplings in kitchen cloth. But just to be fair it’s also the way it was used to be made. The Austrian name ‘Serviettenknödel’ literally means napkin-dumplings. When napkins were still made out of fabric they were used to tightly wrap the dumplings and cook them in it.



  • 200g dry white bread cubes
  • 150ml milk
  • 3 stems flat parsley
  • 1 egg
  • 0.5 teaspoons salt
  • 0.5 teaspoons pepper
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 1 onion
  • 30+30g butter
  • cubed bacon [optional]


_ finely dice onions and sauté [together with the bacon] in 30g butter until lightly browned

_ heat milk [don’t let it boil] and pour over bread cubes

_ add onions, egg, finely chopped parsley, salt, pepper and nutmeg

_ combine well and let soak for 30 minutes


version 1:

_ form 8-12 small balls [press them tight]

_ let sit for a few more minutes

_ bring water to a boil [with a pinch salt]

_ add dumplings

_ once it boils again reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes

_ remove from water and let drip down


version 2:

_ wet a kitchen cloth

_ form the bread mixture to a 4-5 cm thick roll

_ wrap the kitchen cloth tightly around it and tie the ends with a string

_ bring water to a boil in a large pot [with a pinch salt]

_ add dumpling-cloth-sausage and bring to a boil

_ simmer for 10 minutes [no problem if this cooks a bit longer – the cloth keeps the dumplings from getting soggy]

_ remove from water and let drip down

_ unpack and cut into 1cm thick slices


_ melt 30g butter and toss dumplings/dumpling slices in it



  • 600g chanterelles
  • 1 onion
  • 50g butter
  • 50ml dry white wine [optional]
  • 200ml heavy cream
  • 150ml water
  • 1 tablespoon soup seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch [or flour]
  • salt
  • pepper


_ wipe mushrooms clean with a damp kitchen towel and cut away rotten parts [never wash mushrooms – they get soaked with water and lose flavor]

_ cut into bit size slices

_ heat butter in a pan

_ chop onions and gently fry until they get soft

_ add mushrooms and cook for a few minutes [all mushrooms should touch the pan bottom] 

_ pour in white wine and bring to a boil

_ reduce heat and add heavy cream, water and soup seasoning

_ simmer for a few minutes

_ add corn starch and bring to a boil

_ season with salt and pepper


_ serve in a deep dish with a dumpling in the center and sprinkled with chopped parsley



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  1. Calli says:

    Genau wie bei meiner Mutsch… da läuft einem das Wasser im Mund zusammen ;)

  2. anita says:

    Ja das muss man nutzen wenn hier schon mal ‘Pfifferlinge’ verkauft werden :) Ist sehr lecker geworden!

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