Kaiserschmarren – Austrian emperor shredded pancakes with apple sauce

Austrian emperor pancake

Breakfast for dinner. I love the idea! And the austrian have a couple of easy and quick dishes made out of very common ingredients that are just perfect. They are often served for lunch or dinner instead of as a dessert.

One of our favorites are Kaiserschmarren, emperor shredded pancakes, served with homemade apple sauce.

This popular dish comes in many variations. On the mountains it will warm and feed you after a cold skiing tour and will give you the energy to enjoy the slopes as it is roasted in (a lot of) butter.

My take on this very traditional dish combines the recipe found in an almost 100 year old book, the “Sankt Martin Kochbuch”, the wish of a healthy lifestyle (less fats, no sugar or butter..) and my love for an american (Canadian actually) ingredient.

Want to give it a try?

To make the pancakes, you only need:

250g of flour (all purpose)

500ml of milk

4 eggs, yolks and whites separated

a pinch of salt

(a splash of vanilla extract) optional

If you want to make the apple sauce yourself:

4 apples

a pinch of cinnamon

To serve:

maple syrup or icing sugar

fruit, if you like

Yogurt or whipped cream

nuts, dried fruits (raisins)

nutella, jam,.. whatever you feel like adding to them

The Kaiserschmarren are traditionally served with either apple sauce or roasted plums. We usually prepare our own apple sauce because it is so easy that I almost find it embarrassing to buy it from the store (and still I sometimes do!). All you need to do is peel the apples (4) and cut them into cubes. Put them in a saucepan with about 4-6 spoons of water. Cook until tender (15 minutes approximately). Puree the cooked apples with a hand blender. Add sugar if you like. And a pinch of cinnamon powder. Let the sauce cool down.

You can store it in the fridge for a couple of days, so make more and then use it into your plain yogurt, overnight oats or as a healthy snack/dip for the kids!

I suggest you make the apple sauce in advance, whenever you have a little bit of time.

For the emperor pancakes you will need two bowls and a hand mixer (whisk attachment). Put the flour (250g) and the milk (500ml) in a big bowl and mix. Add then the 4 egg yolks (and the a splash of vanilla extract if you want) and mix again.

In a separate bowl whisk the 4 egg whites with a pinch of salt until firm. Add them a little at a time with a spatula to the flour-milk-yolks mixture and mix carefully from the bottom to the top.

Heat a non sticking pan (you can add a piece of butter for more flavor, I tend to omit it) and pour some of the pancake mixture, approximately one finger high (you will need to do 2-4 pancakes depending on the size of the pan). Cook covered with a lid (a glas one would be perfect!) until you see it makes bubbles in the middle and the sides are cooked, this should take 3-5 minutes. Now try to flip it. If it brakes it’s totally fine, because we will shred it anyway! Cook for a couple of minutes without lid on the other side and then brake it in smaller pieces with a spatula and cook for 1-2 more minutes. Set aside and repeat until you finish all the dough.

Serve hot. For a very traditional dish, sprinkle with icing sugar, add raisins and enjoy with apple sauce or roasted plums.

On the picture above I had my Kaiserschmarren with pomegranate, good quality (grade A) maple syrup and home made apple sauce.

Try them with yogurt, whipped cream, fresh fruits, jam, nutella, nuts,.. You will be able to please everyone in the family! Just prepare different toppings and let everyone build its own.

Enjoy!

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