Dec 3 2011
Ebelskivers. Aebleskivers. Both spellings work, and both are pronounced ABLE-sky-vers.
Until I got acquainted with Judy Trull and her Lindsay House B&B in Manawa, I was unenlightened about the Danish treat that gains popularity in December.
The innkeeper describes ebelskivers as a puffy pancake with a filling. To make them properly, you need – what else! – an ebelskiver pan, which resembles a heavy skillet with several round indentations, to hold batter in separate little compartments.
“You could probably use the batter for thin crepe pancakes (in an ordinary skillet), then add a filling,” Judy mused, “but the ebelskiver pan is more readily available than most people probably realize.” Target to Williams-Sonoma sells them.
She and husband Tim are Air Force veterans who bought the bed-and-breakfast inn in 2004. It was built in 1892 as a 16-room lumber baron’s house; today it is in a part of Waupaca County where rodeos are popular in summer.
When snow arrives, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing rule. Lighted rec trails in Iola are about 10 minutes away, about the same distance as Hartman Creek State Park.
“People come for the quiet and to see the stars – you don’t get that in bigger cities,” Judy notes. “The sky is beautiful here, and the air is crisp.”
It’s not unusual for her to mess with standard recipes when making breakfast. That’s what happened with the ebelskiver when the Wisconsin Bed and Breakfast Association made horseradish the designated ingredient in its annual recipe contest.
Judy and Tim taste-tested many variations to perfect the recipe, but the contest was canceled because of a lack of entries.
Notice the many options for fillings in Judy’s recipe. “The best-tasting one, to me, was a mix of blackberry jelly and horseradish,” she insists. “I like the way that the sweetness cut the bite.”
For more about Lindsay House, 539 Depot St., Manawa: www.lindsayhouse.com, 920-596-3643.
SULTRY SAVORY EBELSKIVERS
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup melted butter
2 tablespoons horseradish
Dollops of horseradish
Your choice of jam or jelly
Diced or shredded cheese
Diced Canadian bacon
Diced or crumbled sausage or bacon
Stir together dry ingredients and set aside. Separate egg whites and egg yolks. Whisk egg whites to stiff peaks and set aside. Mix egg yolks, buttermilk, milk, melted butter and horseradish together. Add to dry ingredients; fold in egg whites.
Brush ebelskiver pan with melted butter and place on stovetop over medium heat. Once butter begins to bubble, add a teaspoon of batter, your choice of filling, and another teaspoon of batter. Cook 2 to 3 minutes; then use bamboo skewers to flip them over and cook for 2 to 3 more minutes.
Serve on a plate with sautéed sliced apples, a crispy potato pancake and a side of hollandaise sauce.
Why choose horseradish as the key ingredient for a statewide recipe contest? Silver Spring Foods, Eau Claire, is the world’s largest grower and processor of horseradish. Its horseradish products, mustards and sauces are sold in grocery stores and online at www.silverspringfoods.com.
The family-owned business is 82 years old and does not offer tours or a factory retail outlet, but cooking classes that involve horseradish occasionally occur at the Silver Spring Huntsinger’s Red Farmhouse, W2394 Hwy. 37.
Holiday appetizers is the topic from 6-8:30 p.m. Dec. 6, 13 and 15. A seat at the table costs $55.
Chef Laurel Robertson of Dinner’s On (www.dinners-on.com, 715-579-9496), a catering and personal chef service, leads these classes and customizes classes for groups of at least eight. She offers about 40 topics, and her classes include recipes.
The Silver Spring website also offers a fat selection of recipes, including this one, especially good for the bounty of late autumn.
ROOT VEGETABLE HASH
TOPPED WITH HORSERADISH CREAM
Horseradish cream: 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish 1/2 cup sour cream 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt Pinch freshly ground pepper Hash: 4 tablespoons butter, divided 1 cup onion, sliced thinly 2 springs fresh rosemary 3 garlic cloves, minced 1 pound Yukon gold or other waxy potatoes, skin on 1 large carrot 1 large beet, peeled 1 teaspoon kosher salt 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For horseradish cream, whisk horseradish into sour cream and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.
For hash, heat 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large (10-inch) nonstick skillet over moderate heat. Add the onion and rosemary and cook, stirring occasionally until soft, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic to the onion and cook another minute.
Meanwhile, with the shredding blade of a food processor (or a box grater), grate potatoes into a colander. Rinse and pat very dry. (Giving them a turn in a salad spinner helps, too.)
Stir the potatoes into the vegetables in the skillet. Cook the potatoes, undisturbed until they get crusty on the bottom. Then, stir the crispy bottom into the tender potato, and continue to cook to re-crisp the bottom. Continue this browning and periodic stirring until the potatoes are almost cooked through, about 8 minutes. Meanwhile, shred the carrot and beet.
Remove the rosemary sprigs. Stir the carrot and beets into the potato hash, and cook until slightly soft, about 5 minutes. Press the hash into an even cake. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in bits, along the sides of the skillet, and then brown the hash over high heat. Turn the hash in large sections with a spatula, to brown the other sides, another minute.
Divide the vegetable hash among 4 plates and serve warm with the horseradish cream.
Horseradish, by the way, is Herb of the Year. The International Herb Association notes the pungent root crop’s ability to clear sinuses, prevent scurvy and bring tears to the eyes.
Learn more about the purported health benefits from the Horseradish Information Council at www.horseradish.org.
“Roads Traveled” columns began in 2002 and are the result of anonymous travel, independent travel, press trips and travel journalism conferences. What we choose to cover is not contingent on subsidized or complimentary travel.