These dumplings, made from a curd called “Topfen” in Austria and “Quark” in Germany, are filled with sweet in-season strawberries and coated in luxurious hazelnut breadcrumbs.
Fruit dumplings are a a Central European speciality. Depending on the season, they are filled with strawberries, apricots or plums. Potatoes or curd (Austrian “Topfen” or German “Quark”) are used for the dumpling dough – my family prefer the curd variety. The secret is to leave the dough to rest for a couple of hours in the fridge – best overnight.
The below recipe makes 20 dumplings, which feeds a family of four. If you want to make these for desert, I suggest you use half the amount.
Making dumplings is a fiddly exercise, and I suggest you try to make these first time when you have plenty of time and and no hungry guests waiting at the table.
A note on the curd: I like to use Austrian “Topfen” with 20% fat. I cannot get that one in Germany, so I mix the 10% fat variety “Quark” with the 40% fat variety.
A note on the eggs: Most dumpling recipes I have read call for “two egg yolks” or similar. Which leaves you with the question “what to do with the remaining egg white?”. I have to admit that I am way too practical to do “two egg yolks” so I always use one whole egg instead, with satisfying results.
Ingredients: 500g “Topfen” or “Quark” style curd with 20% fat, 2 eggs, 300g plain flour, 1/2 tsp salt, 20 strawberries, 50g butter, 120g ground hazelnuts, 120g breadcrumbs, icing (powedered) sugar to serve
Note: Plan ahead for making the dough as it needs to rest for a couple of hours before making the dumplings!
- Mix the curd, the eggs, the flour and the salt until smooth. Leave to rest in the fridge for a couple of hours or overnight.
- When you are ready to make the dumplings, first wash and trim the strawberries and bring a large pot of water to the boil. Add some salt, and lower the heat.
- Make the dumplings. With wet hands, make a ball of dough, in size a little bit larger than a table tennis ball. Pat it flat, then wrap it around a strawberry. Seal the dough around the strawberry by smearing with your wet fingers, then roll them to a nice ball shape between two hands.
- Place the dumpling in the simmering water. Fruit dumplings take stress badly, so take your time to make all the remaining dumplings.
- Once you have made all the dumplings, increase the heat and let them simmer for 15 minutes. Keep watching the pot as the water must not become too lively or the dumplings will disintegrate. They should just barely simmer.
- Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large pan over medium heat, add the hazelnuts and breadcrumbs, and keep stirring, until the crumb mixture is nicely toasted all over. They burn easily, so be careful with the heat, and keep stirring.
- After 15 minutes, the dumplings should have risen to the top. If they have not, they might be sticking to the bottom of the pot, and need some gentle help to get loose. If the dumplings still have not risen to the top, wait until they do. Carefully take them out of the water with a slotted spoon, and roll them in the toasted crumbs until nicely covered all over.
- Top with icing sugar (best done with a sieve) and serve.