Traditional Christmas Recipes: Tafelspitz and Spritzgebäck

Christmas time is an opportunity to try all those mouthwatering recipes for traditional dishes and cookies from Austria, Germany and Switzerland.

The two following recipes from Spice Kitchen that will bring typical Austrian and German flavors to your kitchen!

Tafelspitz with Horseradish Sauce (Tafelspitz mit Meerrettichsauce)


Serves: 6
3 lbs. boneless beef rump roast, sirloin tip or bottom round (lean)
1/4 cup matchstick strips of celery root
1 medium-size carrot, peeled and thinly sliced
2 medium-size leeks, washed, trimmed, and thinly sliced
1/2 medium size bunch flat leaf parsley
2 teaspoons salt
12 peppercorns
4 whole allspice or 1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 medium size bay leaf

Horseradish Sauce:
4 tablespoons 1/2 stick unsalted butter
1/2 unsifted all purpose flour
1/2 heavy cream
1/2 cup prepared horseradish, well drained
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

For the beef: Add celery root, carrot, leeks, parsley, salt, peppercorns, allspice and bay leaf in 2 quarts of water. Set, uncovered, over moderate heat and bring to a rolling boil. Ease the beef into Dutch oven and return the water to a simmer, skimming it occasionally to remove any scum. Adjust the heat so the water barely simmers, cover, and cook beef for 2 hours or until fork tender. Transfer the beef to a large heated platter, tent with foil and keep warm. Strain the cooking water and reserve.

For the sauce:
Melt the butter in a medium-size heavy saucepan over low heat. Blend in the flour and cook and stir for 2 minutes. Mix in 2 cups of the reserved beef cooking water. Increase heat to moderate and simmer 3-5 minutes, stirring constantly until thickened and smooth. Mix in the cream, horseradish, lemon juice, sugar and pepper. Reduce the heat to low and cook, uncovered, 5 minutes longer, stirring often, until no raw starch taste remains.

To serve:
Slice the beef across the grain about ¼ inch thick and arrange on a large heated platter, overlapping the slices slightly. Or let cool and serve cold. Ladle the sauce into a gravy boat and pass separately.
Hint: Easing the meat into the rolling boil will seal meat’s pores which keeps the meat’s liquids inside.

Spritz Cookies (Spritzgebäck)

1/2 lb. unsalted butter
1 cup (200g) sugar
1 egg
4 oz. ground nuts (hazelnuts, almonds or others)
2-1/2 cups (250g) flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350° F.

Cream butter and sugar. Add the rest of the ingredients and combine to form a smooth cookie dough. Use a cookie press to form small cookies in different shapes – straight, round, S-shaped cookies – onto a cookie sheet lined with baking parchment.
Bake for 20-30 minutes until golden.

Enjoy and Guten Appetit!