Craving the flavors of old-time European cuisine? As the cold evenings grow longer, cooking a little heavier stews and baking real desserts make sense. Chef Ofer Ben-Or serves Bavarian-inspired cuisine at his Bayern Bavarian Brasserie. Schnitzel stars there with eight different varieties, as well as home-made sausages, authentic salads and sublimely rich desserts.
We asked the chef to share some of his favorite recipes.
✔ 12 shallots
✔ 4 carrots, coarsely chopped
✔ 8 potatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped
✔ 400 gr. Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and coarsely chopped
✔ 400 gr. green beans
✔ 200 gr. Brussels sprouts
✔ 1 large onion, chopped
✔ 1 cup water
✔ 200 gr. tomato paste
✔ 1 tsp. ground caraway
✔ 2 tsp. dry marjoram
✔ Zest of 2 lemons
✔ 4 cloves garlic, minced
✔ Sweet paprika to taste
✔ 1 basket champignon mushrooms Blanch each vegetable (except onion and mushroom) separately in boiling salted water.
In a large pot, sauté onion until transparent. Add the tomato paste, caraway, marjoram, garlic, lemon zest and sweet paprika.
Add water. Transfer the blanched vegetables into the pot and cook together for 10 minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue cooking 5 more minutes. Cook until all vegetables are tender. Serve in soup plates.
✔ 1 large pear, thinly sliced
✔ 1 large apple, thinly sliced
✔ 330 ml. wheat beer
✔ 150 gr. sugar
✔ Juice of 1 lemon
✔ 200 gr. blue cheese
✔ 100 gr. walnuts
✔ 1 Tbsp. mustard
✔ 2 egg yolks
✔ 100 ml. oil
✔ Salt and pepper to taste
✔ 1 head of lettuce, washed and dried
✔ Bunch of baby salad greens In a pot, bring beer to a boil.
Add sugar and lemon juice and cook over low heat for 5-10 minutes, until reduced and beer changes color. Add fruit slices and remove from heat.
Let cool. When cooled, strain the fruit. Reserve the liquid.
In a salad bowl, place greens and lettuce and toss. Add the poached fruit, blue cheese and nuts.
In a separate bowl, whip together liquid, mustard and egg yolks. Gradually add oil until vinaigrette is smooth.
Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle vinaigrette on top and serve.
KAISERSCHMARREN WITH CARAMELIZED PEAR
Makes 5 Kaiserschmarren is a smeared pancake, which takes its name from Austrian emperor Kaiser Franz Joseph I of Austria, who was very fond of this kind of fluffy smeared pancake. Ben-Or serves his variation with caramelized pear.
✔ 1 pear, cored and thinly sliced
✔ 1 Tbsp. sugar
✔ 2 Tbsp. white wine (best to use a Gewurztraminer)
✔ 4 eggs
✔ 4 Tbsp. flour
✔ 5 Tbsp. sugar
✔ 150 ml. milk
✔ 30 gr. butter
✔ 50 gr. each: raisins, ground nuts
✔ Powdered sugar
Heat oven to 200º.
Sauté pear slices in a skillet with a little butter. Add 1 Tbsp. sugar and continue cooking until the pear is caramelized. Add the wine and continue cooking for a couple of minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.
Separate eggs into 2 bowl. Add flour, sugar and milk to the egg yolks and beat until smooth.
Beat the egg whites in a separate bowl.
Heat a deep and heavy oven-proof skillet over medium heat and melt butter until it browns a little but is not burnt. Fold the beaten egg whites into the yolk mixture.
When smooth, add the caramelized pear and continue folding. Pour the mixture into the skillet, sprinkle the raisins and nuts on top and cook for 1 minute.
Place the skillet in the pre-heated oven for 10 minutes or until the kaiserschmarren is golden-brown. Remove from the oven and cut into squares. Garnish with powdered sugar.
Serving suggestion: With fruit compote or a little homemade jam.
BLACK TEA CREME
✔ 250 ml. milk
✔ 125 ml. black tea concentrate
✔ 6 gelatin leaves
✔ 2 eggs, separated
✔ 70 gr. sugar
✔ 125 ml. cream
✔ 1 Tbsp. vanilla sugar
In a medium pot, bring milk and tea to a boil, while stirring. Remove from heat.
In a separate bowl, dissolve the gelatin in a little hot water and pour in the tea mixture, while stirring.
Pour the milk-tea and gelatin mixture back into the pot. Fill a larger pot halfway with water and bring to a boil. Place the smaller pot with the milk mixture inside the larger pot to create a double boiler (bain- marie). Add the yolks into the milk, one at a time, while stirring. Add sugar and continue stirring until it dissolves.
Remove from heat.
Beat the egg whites until double in size.
Pour the milk and egg mixture into the foam and mix gently. Pour into 12 serving cups and refrigerate until pudding is set.
When ready to serve, whip cream with vanilla sugar and place a few dollops on each glass. Garnish with some dark berry jam or a mint leaf.
Recipes and photos courtesy of Bayern Bavarian Brasserie, 22 Frishman Street, Tel Aviv, 077-556-5753.