My Favorite Winter Comfort Food: Spaetzle

When the holidays have passed and the cold, long winter ahead gets me down, my meals often turn toward comfort foods. And my ultimate favorite in comfort foods is spaetzle. These noodle-like dumplings embrace a light butter sage sauce and hold up even in meaty casseroles. Read on for spaetzle recipes and inspiration!Don't let the spaetzle process scare you: you don't need special equipment besides a large slotted spoon, colander, or course grater. If you have a spaetzle maker or a ricer, even better! It takes a few tries to get the hang of forcing the batter through the vessel, but once you establish a rhythm, the dumplings cook in no time. Here are a few recipes - basic and involved - to get you started this winter season:

Ricotta Spaetzle
Spaetzle With Kielbasa and Caramelized Onions from Melissa Clark for the NY Times
Pan-Browned Spaetzle with Shallots and Herbs from Smitten Kitchen
Hand-Cut Spaetzle from Food and Wine

Do you love spaetzle? What's your favorite way to serve it?

Related: Easiest Pasta Ever: Spaetzle

(Images: Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times
; Wikipedia Commons)

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