Snow dusted California mountain skyline brings back memories of a favorite dish – Salzburger Nockerl
Recent historic winter storms in California brought record snowfall making Southern California mountains, visible from the beach cities, look like luscious ski resorts. Unfortunately what looked so beautiful from the distance of the beaches turned also into a difficult situation for mountain communities that found themselves completely snowed in and cut off.
However, focusing on the picturesque beauty of the white mountains against the impeccable blue Southern California sky, I couldn’t help but be reminded of home and the magnificent alpine scenery that is often visible from Munich or when traveling to Salzburg (Austria.)
Salzburger Nockerl – A heavenly dessert
This brings me to one of the famous desserts of Austrian cuisine, Salzburger Nockerl. Have you ever had them? They are the most delicious, fluffy treat of a light and airy dessert I can think of. It’s like tasting a sweet, delicate cloud of air that melts on our tongue.
It’s not an easy dessert to make in my eyes. Despite the main ingredient being eggs, you should not detect even the slightest taste of egg in this dessert ever! I had many encounters with Salzburger Nockerl throughout my childhood that left me quite unimpressed until I found the absolute perfect version of it at the St. Peter Stiftskulinarium in Salzburg a couple of years ago.
If you want your first impression of the Salzburger Nockerl to be a good one, trust me, this restaurant in the middle of Salzburg is the place to make friends with this heavenly dessert.
You’ll find many places, especially in Salzburg, that will offer the city’s famous dish, but not many have mastered it to perfection like the St. Peter Stiftskulinarium. By the way, aside from the Salzburger Nockerl, this restaurant is a must for all gourmets out there. It offers a culinary adventure throughout.
Salzburger Nockerl inspired by the snowy mountain peaks around Salzburg
Before I share some links to a couple of recipes, here is a bit of background on the famous Austrian dessert.
Salzburger Nockerl has a long history and cultural significance in the country, and its unique flavors and textures are closely connected to the snowy landscape and mountains of Salzburg in the winter.
The origins of Salzburger Nockerl, a popular Austrian dessert, are steeped in history and culture. According to legend, the dish was invented by Salome Alt (1568–1633), the concubine of Prince-Archbishop Wolf Dietrich Raitenau in the early 17th century (Wikipedia). Since then, the recipe has been passed down within families and has become a staple dessert in the Salzburg region of Austria.
The dish is made from a number of ingredients, including eggs, sugar, and vanilla, that are combined to form a light and fluffy soufflé. Traditionally Salzburger Nockerl are served in the shape of three mounds dusted with white powdered sugar that should represent the three snow-capped mountain peaks of the Rainberg, Kapuzinerberg, and Gaisberg mountains that overlook Salzburg.
The traditional recipe also calls for the Salzburger Nockerl to be served with a sweet raspberry sauce, which is symbolic of the sweet and sour experiences of life. In this way, Salzburger Nockerl is more than just a dessert – it is a reflection of the history and culture of Salzburg.
The popularity of Salzburger Nockerl has grown significantly over the years, and today, it is one of the most beloved Austrian desserts. Its origins, however, remain rooted in the Salzburg region. As such, it is a unique and traditional part of the region’s culinary culture and stands as a testament to the region’s rich food history.
Recipe Suggestions for Salzburger Nockerl
I have to admit I have never dared to make Salzburger Nockerl myself, but if you want to give it a try here are a couple of links to explore:
You can find some extensive recipe instructions on tasteatlas.com or check out the recipe, written in German by Claudia Baruanstein, at geschmeidigekoestlichkeiten.at You need to scroll down for the recipe, but the picture of the Salzburger Nockerl at the beginning of her article looks pretty promising.
As you can see from the image of the most perfect Salzburger Nockerl below and which I have to order at the St. Peter’s Stiftkulinarium every time I visit Salzburg, the Nockerl are just lightly browned on top. The top should not have a dense ‘crust’, instead a spoon should just easily glide into the fluffy meringue-like creation.
Have fun exploring! Let me know in the comments if you have tried a good recipe to share.
Images: ©California Germans & ©St.Peter’s Stift