Spaetzle is a German egg noodle dish commonly fried in butter until brown or served with melted cheese as Germany's answer to macaroni and cheese. While the noodles aren't particularly difficult to make, it is a time-consuming, often messy process. Instead of making a batch from scratch every time you get a craving, you can make one large batch and freeze the extra spaetzle for about four months. Whenever you want some spaetzle, you simply remove it from the freezer, thaw it and prepare the dish as you would with fresh spaetzle.
Drain the hot spaetzle in a colander in the sink. Rinse it with cold water to cool it down and prevent it from sticking. The starch granules on the surface of the pasta are sticky when hot, but less likely to stick together when cool.
Leave the spaetzle in the colander for a few minutes to drain as much water as possible. Shake the colander periodically to release water stuck in the folds of the pasta.
Divide the spaetzle into the portion sizes desired, whether you want individual portions or enough to serve four people.
Place the portions of spaetzle in freezer bags, leaving at least 2 inches of head room between the top of the spaetzle and the bag seal. Squeeze out as much air as possible and seal the bag closed. Label each bag with the storage date and a consume-by date about four months after the storage date.
Place the spaetzle bags in the freezer along the freezer walls for rapid freezing. You can move them to their designated freezer space after about 24 hours or when they are completely frozen.
- You can use the bags of frozen spaetzle as the base for freezing a complete meal. For example, you can add a bag of frozen, grilled onions plus a separate bag of frozen cheese sauce inside the larger spaetzle bag. Take them out of the freezer and cook the contents of all three bags together in a skillet for about 15 minutes to make cheesy spaetzle with onions.
A former cake decorator and competitive horticulturist, Amelia Allonsy is most at home in the kitchen or with her hands in the dirt. She received her Bachelor's degree from West Virginia University. Her work has been published in the San Francisco Chronicle and on other websites.