Originally known as Kaiserschmarrn, for obvious reasons, this is an aristocratic dish that has been transformed into a traditional dish because of its enduring popularity. Ask an Austrian to suggest their favourite food, and one that is traditional and representative of the country‘s food culture, and this is the answer. And it was untouchable. Made only with cream, eggs, flour, raisins and sugar it epitomised haute cuisine. Then it lost its kingly status, no more so than in the Tyrol where this torn pancake became all things to all people. The raisins were replaced by red cherries, pine nuts were preferred by those with a creative streak, almonds and hazelnuts got in on the act, and then Radio Tyrol decided that the schmarrn could become an oven-baked version of the rösti. They came up with a recipe using streaky bacon and waxy potatoes combined with the basic schmarrn ingredients – cream, eggs, flour, milk. That recipe is at tirol.orf.at/radio/stories/2701864/ and in Fricot, our very large book of Anatolian, Caucasian and European traditional recipes. But for us it is back to basics – Tyrol style of course. This is the pine nuts version. Absolutely delicious.
- 300 ml cream (or 200 ml milk)
- 240 g (4) eggs, separated
- 175 g white spelt / white wheat flour
- 45 g pine nuts
- 45 g vanilla sugar
- 40 g butter
- Salt, pinch
- Icing sugar, for garnish
Whisk egg whites into a stiff froth. Beat egg yolks and cream or milk, add flour, sugar and salt then the pine nuts. Fold in egg whites. Melt butter in a large frying pan, pour in the mixture, fry over a medium heat until brown. Turn and brown the other side. Break with two forks, add a little more butter and brown thoroughly. Place on serving plates, garnish with icing sugar.