Spätzle ([ˈʃpɛtslə]) is a dish made with fresh eggs, typically serving as a side for meat dishes with gravy. Commonly associated with Swabia, it is also found in the cuisines of southern Germany and Austria, Switzerland, Hungary, Slovenia, Alsace, Moselle, and South Tyrol.


Spätzle is the Swabian diminutive of Spatz, thus literally “little sparrow”. They are also known as Knöpfle (diminutive of button), also Spätzli or Chnöpfli in Switzerland or Hungarian NokedliCsipetkeGaluska or Slovak Halušky or Slovenian Vaseršpacli or vodni žličniki.

Before using mechanical devices, the pasta was shaped by hand or with a spoon. The results resembled Spatzen (plural of Spatz, meaning sparrows, a sparrow is Spatz or Sperling in German; Spätzle is the diminutive of Spatz, unchanged in plural).

Knöpfle means “small buttons” and describes the compact, round form of the pasta. In everyday language usage, the two names refer to the same product made from the same dough and are interchangeable. There is no clear distinction between the way the two names are used and usage varies from one region to another.


The geographic origin of spätzle is not precisely known; various regions claim to be the originators of the pasta.

The tradition of making “Spätzle” can be traced back to the 18th century, although medieval illustrations are believed to place the pasta at an even earlier date. In 1725, Rosino Lentilio, a councilor and personal physician from Württemberg, concluded that “Knöpflein” and “Spazen” were “all the things that are made from flour”. Spelt was grown widely in the Swabian-Alemannic area at the time. The cereal grew on poor soils and was very popular in the region, home to small farmers and characterized by poverty. As spelt flour contains high levels of gluten protein and the dough could therefore be made in times of hardship without the need for eggs, “Schwäbische Spätzle”/”Schwäbische Knöpfle” were mainly made from spelt. The product achieved fame in the Münsinger Alb upland area. As industrialization began and prosperity increased, the pasta went from being an ordinary, everyday food item to a culinary specialty eaten on feast days. In a description of a Swabian farmers’ village written in 1937, “spätzle” is described as festive food. The great importance of “Schwäbische Spätzle”/”Schwäbische Knöpfle” in Swabian cooking can be seen, inter alia, from the 1827 novel Die Geschichte von den Sieben Schwaben, according to which the custom in Swabia is “to eat five times a day, five times soup, twice with ‘Knöpfle’ or ‘Spätzle'”.

Today, Spätzle is largely considered a “Swabian specialty” and is generally associated with the German state of Baden-Württemberg. In France, they are associated with Alsace and Moselle. The total estimated annual commercial production of spätzle in Germany is approximately 40,000 tons.[4] Pre-made spätzle are also available internationally.

Protected designation of origin

Since March 2012, Swabian Spätzle and Swabian Knöpfle have been awarded the EU quality seal for “Protected Geographical Indications (PGI)” and are protected throughout Europe as a regional specialty. To be able to bear this sign, one of the production stages of the product must have taken place in the respectively defined region of origin.


  •  eggs, 
  • flour,
  • salt.
Spätzl scraping on the occasion of the editorial meeting food and drink – Dirk Ingo Franke CC BY-SA 3.0

How to make Spätzle

Spätzle dough typically consists of few ingredients, principally eggs, flour, and salt. The Swabian rule-of-thumb is to use one more egg than the number of persons who will eat the spätzle. Often, water is added to produce a thinner dough. The flour traditionally used for spätzle is bread wheat (not the durum wheat used for Italian pasta), however, a more coarsely milled type is used for spätzle making than for baking. This flour type is known as Dunst, similar to the US “first clear” or Czech hrubá type. This gives a chewier texture but can produce a dough too crumbly for scraping if no water is added, particularly when cutting short on eggs for dietary reasons. If fine (“all-purpose”) flour and the full complement of eggs are used, all fat and moisture in the dough are derived from these, and water is rarely necessary.

Cheese spaetzle Sölden – Takeaway CC BY-SA 4.0


Spätzle typically accompanies meat dishes prepared with an abundant sauce or gravy, such as Zwiebelrostbraten, Sauerbraten, or Rouladen. In Hungary spätzle often are used in soup. Spätzle also is used as a primary ingredient in dishes including:


  • Linsen, Spätzle und Saitenwürstle: Spätzle with lentils and fine-skinned, frankfurter-style sausages
  • Käsespätzle: Spätzle mixed with grated cheese (typically Emmenthaler) and fried onion
  • Gaisburger Marsch: Traditional Swabian beef stew with potatoes and carrots
  • Krautspätzle: Spätzle mixed with sauerkraut, onion, butter and spices such as marjoram and/or caraway
  • Spätzle mit Käse überbacken – Spätzle mixed with cheese and topped with paprika
  • Leberspätzle: Spätzle mixed with ground liver, often served as a soup with a clear broth
  • Spinatspatzeln (Tyrolean dialect): Spätzle which also contain spinach as one of the ingredients; a speciality of Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol
Spinatspatzeln  – Takeaway CC BY-SA 3.0

Spinatspatzeln (Tirolean dialect) or Spinat Spätzle (German) are a variety of Spätzle from Southern Tyrol. It contains spinach as one of the ingredients of the noodle. This version is served with cheese and ham. At a South Tirolean restaurant in Herrsching, Bavaria


  • Kirschspätzle: Spätzle mixed with fresh cherries, dressed with clarified, browned butter, sugar and cinnamon and/or nutmeg. In the Allgäu, this is served as a one-dish supper in late summer.
  • Apfelspätzle: Spätzle with grated apples in the dough, dressed with clarified, browned butter, sugar, and cinnamon. In the Allgäu, this is served as a one-dish supper in autumn.

Vinschger Paarl – Pari de séghel or Panét de séghel

Vinschger Paarl – Rainer Zenz CC BY-SA 3.0

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Vinschger Paarl (in Val di Sole called Pari de séghel or Panét de séghel) is a type of black bread typical of the Val Venosta, in Alto Adige and of the Valle di Sole in Trentino.
Vinschger paarl literally means “couple venostana,” that is, in practice, “loaf (of rye) venostana” (locally, it is often sufficient to say “paarl” to mean the product).
This bread is kneaded using a mixture of flours: rye flour and spelt flour. This bread also has a typical shape, as it is made by joining two round and flat loaves, hence the name Paarl, which is “couple.”
This bread’s original recipe has been rediscovered, kept by the Benedictine monks of the Abbey of Monte Maria above Burgusio in Malles’ municipality: the Ur-Paarl.


For the biga:

5 g of brewer's yeast
220 g rye flour
200 ml lukewarm water

For the dough:

300 ml lukewarm water[3]
100 g of sourdough
150 g wholemeal spelt flour
350 g of rye flour
2 g of aromatic leaves
10 g of salt
2 g of crushed coriander
3 g of fennel seeds
2 g of cumin seeds

How to make Vinschger Paarl – Pari de séghel or Panét de séghel

Heat the water and mix it with the sourdough. Mix the two flours in a bowl with the yeast, the four aromatic leaves, salt, coriander, fennel seeds, and cumin. Cover the dough and let it rise for 20 minutes at a temperature of 35°. Knead the dough again, then give it a paired loaf shape. Sprinkle with spelt flour, let rise for another 20 minutes, and bake in the preheated oven. Bake initially at 220° and then at 170°, for a total baking time of 30-40 minutes.

Regional Recipe from Trentino-South Tyrol
Production area Val Venosta, Val di Sole


Strangozzi al ragù first course, Perugia, Umbria – Cantalamessa Public Domain

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Strozzapreti is a family of different types of short pasta that can be in the form of the twisted cordon, macaroni, or gnocco, widespread in different Italian regions.


The name strozzapreti derives from the fact that this type of pasta, given its shape, is not always easy to eat and alludes maliciously to priests’ proverbial gluttony. Mentioned several times in Roman literature, for example, in the Sonnets of Giuseppe Gioachino Belli, strozzapreti was born as a pasta to be cooked then typical of holidays or bourgeois use. The poet describes them as “cannelletti of dried pasta, one inch long” to be seasoned or cooked with sughillo [stew sauce].”

How to make Strozzapreti

Strozzapreti Romagnoli
The pasta sheet must be rolled out with a rolling pin fairly thick; then, it must be cut into strips about 1.5 cm wide. In turn, the strips are cut at 5 cm or more in length and manually twisted one by one as for cavatelli (which are much smaller).

Strozzapreti Trentini – Stefano Bolognini Attribution

Typology and territorial diffusion

In Trentino and Milanese cuisine, strangolapreti is gnocchi made with stale bread, spinach, eggs, and Trentino Parmesan cheese, served with melted butter and sage. In Milanese and Larian cooking, soft cheese is also added.
In the cuisine of Romagna, strozzapreti is short twisted strands of pasta made by hand from water and flour. In the countryside between Faenza and Lugo is widespread strozzapreti with the knot, obtained by knotting each piece of pasta after twisting it on itself. In the kitchen of Imola and Lugo, between the end of ‘800 and the middle of ‘900, strozzapreti was called “priests suffocated,” terminology then disappeared and was slightly larger.

Umbrian cooking with the term strozzapreti or strangozzi is meant a long square section of pasta made of water and flour.
In Latium, cooking strozzapreti is spaghettoni pulled by hand. In Viterbo’s cooking, stratto is a hand made pasta, typical of Blera, seasoned with truffles.
In L’Aquila, strangolapreti is a big string of durum wheat pasta about 20 cm long.
Neapolitan cooking, with the term strangulapriévete, is designated simple gnocchi, homemade with water and flour.
In Salento, cooking with the term strangulaprevati are meant potato gnocchi.
In Calabrian cuisine, strangugliapreviti are gnocchi made of flour and eggs; in the tradition of Nicastro, they are the dish of Shrove Tuesday.
In Corsican cooking, the name “sturzapréti” refers to small gnocchi made with brocciu cheese and spinach or cardoons.

Strozzapeti Romagnoli – Eiminun CC BY-SA 4.0

Regional Recipe from Emilia-Romagna, Tuscany, Trentino Alto Adige, Marche, Umbria, Abruzzo, Lazio, Calabria

Arrosto di maiale alla birra con patate, castagne e salsa allo yogurt e rosmarino

Courtesy of Suedtirol.info

Roast pork in beer with potatoes, chestnuts and yogurt, and rosemary sauce

Dish: For a hunger for wolves
Dairy Products:
Difficulty: difficult
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 90 minutes
Total duration: 120 minutes
A recipe by: Stefano Cavada

Ingredients for 4 people

1 kg pork loin
2 garlic cloves
4 small onions (or shallots)
3 spoons of extra virgin olive oil
200 ml beer
2 sprigs of rosemary

400 g boiled new potatoes
150 g cooked chestnuts
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 sprig of rosemary

150 g natural white yogurt from South Tyrol
1 teaspoon of dried rosemary

How to make Roast pork in beer with potatoes, chestnuts and yogurt, and rosemary sauce

Preheat the oven to 150°C in a static oven (130°C ventilated).
Salt and pepper the pork loin evenly on all sides, massaging it well with your hands. Then tie it with kitchen string.
Heat a non-stick pan with three tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and brown the roast well on all sides.
Transfer the roast to an ovenproof dish, drizzle with the beer, add the onions, peeled and cut in half, the garlic cloves and the rosemary sprigs.
Bake for 1 hour and 30 minutes, basting the roast with beer from time to time.
Dress the new potatoes and chestnuts with oil, salt and pepper. Arrange them in a baking dish and bake them during the last 40 minutes of cooking the roast.
Prepare the yogurt sauce by mixing the yogurt with the rosemary and a pinch of salt.
Once cooked, let the roast cool wrapped in foil for a few minutes.
Remove the sauce and onions from the oven dish, taking care to remove the garlic cloves and rosemary sprigs. Blend and sieve the sauce to make an accompanying sauce for the roast.
Remove the twine and cut the roast into slices. Serve the potatoes and chestnuts drizzled with a little yogurt sauce.

Wine pairing:

We recommend a Pinot Noir

Regional recipe from Südtirol

Tartare di trota salmonata alle mele – Tartare of salmon trout with apples

Courtesy of Suedtirol.info

Tartare of salmon trout with apples

First with Granny Smith apples from Alto Adige

Difficulty: easy
Preparation time: 30 min
Style: modern
Apple: Granny Smith


One bunch of tarragon
70 g of crème fraîche
100-150 ml of cream
One teaspoon of white wine vinegar
1/2 untreated lemon
Two anchovy fillets
One teaspoon capers
Freshly ground black pepper
200 g of potatoes resistant to cooking
200 ml of seed oil for frying
300 g salmon trout fillet
1-2 shallots
One tart South Tyrolean apple, Granny Smith, or another type
One red chili pepper, not too hot
Three tablespoons olive oil

A recipe by Felicitas Then

How to make Tartare di trota salmonata alle mele – Tartare of salmon trout with apples

Set aside some tarragon leaves for the final decoration and coarsely chop the others. Combine them with the crème fraîche, cream, white wine vinegar, grated lemon rind, anchovies, and capers. Puree in a blender until creamy. Adjust salt and pepper.

Cut the potatoes into cubes, fry them in oil until golden brown, place them on kitchen paper to remove excess grease, and adjust salt and pepper.

Remove any skin from the salmon trout fillet. Core the apple, clean the chili and peel the shallot, then chop finely. Mix the fish, apple, shallot, and chili and season with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Season to taste with soy sauce.

Spread the tarragon cream in the center of the plate, place the salmon trout tartare on top, garnish with the diced potatoes and remaining tarragon leaves.

Regional recipe from Südtirol

“Zelten” di Natale

Courtesy of Suedtirol.info

Christmas “Zelten”

The traditional fruit bread is a mix of oriental spices, southern fruits, and South Tyrolean goodness.

Basic information

Preparation time: 02:00 h.
Persons: 4


    20 g of yeast
    2 C sugar
    150 g of flour
    100 g of rye flour
    15 g of salt
    1 tbsp oil
    1 tsp aniseed
    1 tsp cumin
    500 g dried figs, cut into cubes or strips
    250 g raisins
    120 g raisins
    120 g mixed nuts (hazelnuts, walnuts, peanuts), chopped
    120 g pine nuts
    50 g of candied lemon peel
    50 g of candied orange peel
    50 ml of white wine
    3 C of rum
    70 g of honey
    1/2 c of grated lemon rind
    1/2 c of grated orange rind
    1/2 c of cinnamon
    1 pinch of powdered cloves
    1 pinch of allspice
    1 pinch of nutmeg
    walnuts, hazelnuts or peeled almonds and candied cherries for decoration
    honey or sugar syrup for brushing

How to make “Zelten” di Natale – Christmas “Zelten”

Mix yeast and sugar with warm water and let rise for 10 minutes.
Add the flour, rye flour, salt, oil, anise, and cumin, and knead the dough with a dough mixer.
Let rise at 35 degrees (covered) for 30 minutes.
Marinate the figs raisins, raisins, walnuts, pine nuts, almonds, citron, candied orange peel in the white wine for at least 1 hour in the rum and honey so that the zelten acquires a pleasing aroma.
Add the lemon and orange zest, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, and nutmeg.
Mix the bread dough with the marinated fruits and nuts well with the mixer.
Form round or elongated zelten and decorate with walnuts and almonds.
Place them on a baking sheet and let them rest for another 20 minutes.
Bake in the preheated oven, frequently brushing with honey or sugar in the syrup until deep brown.
Let cool, decorate with candied cherries, then -wrap them in cling film.

Baking temperature is 170 degrees, baking time: about 40 minutes.

Special tip:
The ingredients can also be marinated the day before.

From the recipe book Dolci Dolomiti
Heinrich Gasteiger, Gerhard Wieser, Helmut Bachmann

Regional recipe from Südtirol

Guancialini di maiale stufati con purè di pastinaca e carote

Courtesy of Suedtirol.info

Stewed pork cheeks with mashed parsnips and carrots

A recipe from Simply good by Hannes Haselrieder

Basic information

persons: 4


    4 pork cheeks
    400 g root vegetables (onion, celery, carrots)
    300 ml beer with the South Tyrolean Seal of Quality
    1 l veal stock or water
    500 g parsnips
    300 g carrots
    200 ml cream with the South Tyrolean seal of quality
    150 g cold butter with the Marchio di Qualità Alto Adige seal of quality
    200 g sugar
    olive oil
    seed oil

How to make Stewed pork cheeks with mashed parsnips and carrots

First, salt and pepper the pork cheeks, brown them in a pan heated with seed oil and remove them from the pan. Next, cut the vegetables into large cubes. In the same pot used to cook the meat, sauté the vegetables in olive oil, then deglaze a little at a time with the beer. Finally, pour in the broth or water until everything is covered and add the pork cheeks. Please place in the oven and bake at 170 degrees, letting it stew for about 1 hour and 30 minutes. Remove the meat from the pot, drain the sauce, and reduce to the right consistency.

For the parsnip puree, peel the roots, wash them, and dice them. Cook them in boiling water until soft. Drain the water and mashed potato the parsnips with the cream and 110 g of butter to a fine purée. To finish, season the puree with salt and pepper.

Peel and wash the carrots and cut them into sticks. Then glaze them in a pan with the remaining butter and sugar, i.e. coat the carrots with the butter and sugar.

To plate, arrange the stewed pork cheeks on a plate, add the parsnip puree, glazed carrots and sprinkle a little sauce on top.

Regional recipe from Südtirol

Pavlova di Natale – Christmas pavlova

Courtesy of Suedtirol.info

Christmas pavlova

Dish: For the greedy
Dairy products:

Yogurt Milk 

Difficulty: difficult
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 80 minutes
Total time: 110 minutes (+ Leave to macerate in the refrigerator overnight)
A recipe by Stefano Cavada

Ingredients for 1 pavlova:

3 egg whites
150 g icing sugar
1 teaspoon of apple vinegar
1 teaspoon of cornflour
1 pinch of salt

1 tablespoon raisins
5 dried figs
White wine

3 tablespoons lactose-free white yogurt from Alto Adige
100 ml cream
1 teaspoon of Lebkuchen spices

Fresh blueberries
Organic lemon peel
Hazelnut grains
Almond slivers

How to make Pavlova di Natale – Christmas pavlova

Cut figs in four, add them to raisins in a bowl and cover entirely with white wine. 
Leave to macerate in the refrigerator for a whole night.
Whip the egg whites until stiff with an electric whisk and incorporate the powdered sugar one spoonful at a time without stopping the whisk. 
Then leave to whisk for another 7 minutes until a frothy, white, glossy meringue is obtained.
Mix the vinegar and cornstarch together and incorporate the mixture into the meringue, stirring from top to bottom with the help of a spatula. 
This little addition will make the meringue inside as soft as a marshmellow.
Draw a 24 cm circle on a sheet of baking paper with a pencil (e.g. help yourself to a cake pan), flip the sheet over and line a baking sheet with it. 
Pour the meringue in the center of the circle and form the pavlova, trying to create a fairly high border, all along the edge. 
Bake at 110°C in a ventilated oven for 80 minutes.
When finished baking, turn off the oven, open the door and leave the pavlova inside for another 20 minutes. 
Once the pavlova has cooled whip the whipped cream and add the white yogurt and Lebkuchen spices.
Place the mixture in the center of the pavlova and sprinkle with the macerated dried fruit, blueberries, chopped hazelnuts, slivers of almonds and finish with grated lemon zest.

Wine pairing: Gewürztraminer Passito.

Regional recipe from Südtirol

Kaeseknoedel – Cheese dumplings

Did you know that I often choose hiking tours according to the huts along the way? In South Tyrol, the purest pleasure: Fresh buttermilk, cheese with the aroma of spicy alpine herbs, smoked bacon, Kaminwurzen, or homemade dumplings are available almost everywhere. I love these traditional, simple hut meals more than anything. That’s all it takes for hiking happiness.

I like South Tyrolean dumplings best as the main course, with just a little (cabbage) salad on the side – and a fruity Vernatsch. And my favorite thing of all is to enjoy cheese dumplings and bacon dumplings on the terrace of an alpine hut with a view of the mountains.

The classic South Tyrolean dumpling recipe probably doesn’t exist. Every region, every hut, every cook swears by their own, often passed down through generations. But the basic ingredients are the same for all: bread, onions, milk, eggs, cheese, and bacon.

During my last visit to the Zmailerhof in Schenna, I was allowed to look into the pots of dumpling queen Martha. For 30 years, the boss herself has been cooking: dumplings with nettle, cheese, or bacon. Sometimes with coleslaw, sometimes with lots of butter and Parmesan. Always with a lot of love.

A few months later in the Three Peaks region, I was able to make dumplings myself at the cooking course in the Helmstuben in Sesto. Thanks to expert tips, they turned out well right away.

Friendly hut host Schorsch has thereby revealed his dumpling recipe – for all those who want to cook dumplings again later at home. Is there a nicer way to look forward to your next vacation in South Tyrol?

South Tyrolean cheese and bacon dumpling recipe

Simple and quick dumpling recipe from the South Tyrolean innkeeper of the Helmhütte in the Three Peaks region that also tastes fabulous at home.

Preparation time 20 min.
Dish: Main course
Country & Region: Alps, Hut dish, South Tyrol
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 500kcal


600 g white bread
300 g gray cheese alternatively: sour milk cheese e.g. Harzer
200 g South Tyrolean bacon alternatively: well-marbled German ham bacon
2 large onions
100 g butter
400 ml milk
4 eggs
1 bunch of parsley


Cut white bread into small cubes (about 1.5 cm) and set aside. 
Finely chop the parsley. 
Dice onion and sauté in pan with a little butter until translucent. 
Sauté parsley briefly.

Bacon dumplings

For the bacon dumplings, fry the (ham) bacon in a pan and add half of the onion-parsley mixture (we need the rest for the cheese dumplings).
Mix with half of the bread cubes, 2 egg yolks and 200 ml milk. 
Tip: Add a little more or less milk depending on the consistency, the dumpling dough must "smack" between your hands.
Season with salt and pepper and form dumplings.
Place in boiling salted water and let steep over low heat until dumplings float to the surface (takes between 8-12 min depending on size).
Remove with a slotted spoon. Serve with melted butter (and grated parmesan if desired).

Cheese dumplings

Break or cut cheese into small pieces.
Mix remaining bread cubes and onion-parsley mixture with 2 egg yolks.
Add the chopped cheese and gradually stir in about 200 ml of milk until a not too runny dough is formed (add a little flour if necessary).
Season with salt and pepper and form dumplings.
Put them into boiling salted water and let them simmer at low heat until the dumplings float on the surface (takes between 8-12 min depending on the size).
Remove with a slotted spoon. Serve with melted butter (and grated parmesan if desired).

Regional Recipe from Südtirol

Carpaccio di speck dell’Alto Adige e porcini

Courtesy of Suedtirol.info

Carpaccio of South Tyrolean speck and porcini mushrooms

An Italian specialty revisited in a South Tyrolean way

Basic information

Preparation time: 00:45 h.
Persons: 4


    200 g South Tyrolean speck
    80 g fresh porcini mushrooms
    2 radishes
    10 g spring onions
    60 g lettuce
    1 C lemon juice
    Freshly ground white pepper
    4 C olive oil
    1 C horseradish
    2 C of bread croutons

How to make Carpaccio of South Tyrolean speck and porcini mushrooms

In a small bowl, mix lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
Add the olive oil while continuing to stir vigorously and add salt if necessary.
Remove the bacon from the rind and slice finely (with a slicer).
Arrange the slices of the speck in a circle on the plate.
Clean the porcini, cut them into thin slices, and distribute them, raw, on the slices of speck.
Clean the radishes, wash them, and cut them into slices.
Clean the spring onions, cut them into rings, and arrange them with the radishes and lettuce on the speck.
Finally, season the dish with the dressing, the horseradish cut into slivers, the croutons, and serve.

Special Tip:
Instead of fresh porcini, you can also use porcini in oil. For a change, spread shavings of South Tyrolean Parmesan cheese on the carpaccio.

Wine: Alto Adige Terlano

Regional recipe from Südtirol