I’m very, very biased when it comes to rouladen and knödel. I’m quite sure that my mom’s are the best. I tried to duplicate hers as best I could, and boy, where they ever fantastic, but they still aren’t mom’s. I’m ok with that. Fantastic tender beef stuffed with a mixture of pickles, mustard, bacon and onion. Cooked and then served with a fantastic pan gravy made from the yum-yums left in the pan. The knödel are spatzle-like. Cold mashed potatoes formed into bowls, stuffed with crunchy croutons, simmered in water. Served with more of the gravy from rouladen. Delicious!
I used a top round that was already sliced. I pounded it thinner using my trusty meat pounder. Next time I’ll probably opt to pick up a whole top round and slice it myself. That’ll give me a bit more control over how the meat comes out. Even still, the rouladen were sooooo tasty good. For only my second time making rouladen and knödel, I was very happy!
This was my first time making knödels from scratch. You can find packets of mix in the grocery store that make the process much easier and still come out fantastic. I decided to give making them myself a shot. They are actually very easy to make. My only advice is to be very, very careful removing them from the pot after they’ve simmered. They really, really want to fall apart. Be gentle and slow and they’ll come out great.
Also try my delicious German classic, warm potato salad.
Rouladen and Knödel
For the Rouladen
- 6 slices bacon cut into small pieces
- 6 slices top round pounded to 1/4″ thickness, each 4″ x 6″ in size
- kosher salt to taste
- ground black pepper to taste
- Prepared yellow mustard
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 3 dill pickles chopped
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 cups water plus 2 tablespoons
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
For the Rouladen
- Cook the bacon in a large skillet until done but not crispy. Remove and let drain and cool on paper towel.
- Lay the beef slices out on a flat surface and season well with salt and pepper on both sides.
- Squirt one side of the meat with the yellow mustard. Don’t be shy with it. Spread out evenly.
- Divide the onion, pickles and cooked bacon between the meat slices.
- Roll meat up, securing with toothpicks.
- Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add the rouladen and brown on all sides. Remove to a plate.
- Add 2 cups of water to the skillet and stir.
- Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer.
- Add the rouladen back to the skillet. Cover and continue simmering for 1 1/2 hours.
- Mix together 2 tablespoons of water and the cornstarch until smooth.
- Remove rouladen.
- Whisk in the cornstarch mixture until thickened.
- Whisk in the sour cream until smooth.
- Return the rouladen to the pan. Carefully remove the toothpicks, coat with the gravy and serve.
For the Knödel
- Place potatoes in a large pot of boiling salted water.
- Cook until tender, about 30 minutes.
- Remove from water and let cool completely then refrigerate overnight.
- Rice or mash the potatoes and transfer to a large bowl.
- Add 1 cup of the flour, a pinch or two of salt and the eggs.
- Mix well and press to form 2″ balls. If the potatoes don’t hold together add a bit more flour.
- Place 2-3 croutons in the middle of the potato balls and lower into a pot of simmering, salted water. Simmer for 20 minutes.
- Carefully remove from water using a slotted spoon and serve immediately.
Nutritional values are approximate.