Introducing cheese buttons – a German tradition

Connie – pay attention, this one’s for you. Got it?

Earlier this summer, I finally wrote down my grandmother’s recipe for German Dumplings. I entered the recipe into an Iron Chef Challenge sponsored by King Arthur’s Flour…and somehow pulled away with a win! (I’ll be posting a recipe tomorrow, in a battle of the iron chef all-stars kinda thing. Stay tuned.)

It was requested that I work on a recipe for Grandma’s cheese buttons, and here it is. Well, kind of. If you want to go through the work of making your own dough, go ahead and use my recipe on the dumplings post. But I’m all for ease, and speed, and still tasting authentic. And oddly enough, my “new” way of doing this works just fine. Even my dad didn’t notice the difference!

So here it is, German Cheese Buttons, updated for 2011:

Ingredients:

  • Wonton or egg roll wrappers (egg roll wrappers can be cut into 4, wonton wrappers are just the right size)
  • Cottage cheese
  • Butter
  • Salt/pepper to taste
  • Meat of choice, I prefer fry sausage…but ham, pork or seasoned burger would work just fine…or go without

Place a kettle of water on the stove and heat it over medium to a boil. While water is heating, take your cottage cheese and place it in a bowl; season with salt and pepper to your liking. Take wonton wrapper and place a small spoonful in the middle of the wrapper. wet around the edges and fold the wonton in half, making a triangle with all the edges sealed. (It’s important that the edges seal, so that your cottage cheese doesn’t leak out.)

Yummy cottage cheese in middle, preparing to fold it in half! Notice the outside edges are wet...use water to seal!

Cheese button folded in half, press around edges to make sure it seals!

Make as many cheese buttons as you think you need…add 10 more. Trust me. They’re that good.

In a frying pan, melt half a stick of butter or medium heat. Place cheese buttons in the pot of boiling water, four or so at a time. Let them boil for 3-4 minutes. They should float when they’re done. Using a slotted spoon, take the cheese buttons out of the water, letting most of the water drain off. Place them directly into the frying pan. Continue until all cheese buttons are in the frying pan. Be sure to flip occasionally, to keep from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Warning: some of the cheese buttons may rupture in the water, some may stick and rupture in the pan. It will not affect the tastiness of the dish, just might tarnish the presentation a bit. One taste and all thoughts of what the plate looks like will fly out the window. Again, trust me.

Water boiling, cheese buttons floating. They are ready!

Use a slotted spoon to drain off excess water...then...

Fry them in butter!

Once all cheese buttons are in the pan, add your sliced sausage, meat, etc. Serve when meat is heated through.

I try to find ways to incorporate as many food groups into one pan as possible. I make these meat chunks large, so that I can pick them out for George's diet.

One thing you may want to add in if you’re really wanting to be authentically German, is bread crumbs. Fry them up in the butter, along with the cheese buttons. You won’t be disappointed. But do me a favor, don’t tell your doctor I told you to do that, ‘k?

Things you need to know:

  1. German cooking is not low-fat, low-carb or anything else a health professional would claim as “good for you.”
  2. German cooking tastes wonderful. And my grandma was 89 when she passed away. I can live with that.
  3. You may need to add more butter as you’re cooking, to “keep it from sticking.” At least, that’s what I tell myself. I’m sure it’s true.
  4. Do NOT boil your cheese buttons for too long. They will rupture. And then the dough will get gooey. It still tastes fine, just not appealing to the eye. And the textures a little oozy. Consider yourself warned.

Good luck, have fun…and enjoy your meal. And stay tuned tomorrow. I get crazy with a loaf of cinnamon raisin bread.

I’m linking to the Gooseberry Patch Christmas Favorites Round Up today…this was truly one of my holiday favorites that Grandma would make!
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3 thoughts on “Introducing cheese buttons – a German tradition

  1. Your awesome!!!!!!! I’m so thankful we have you to fill in the void. Even though grandma is gone you keep her memories and good cookin alive. Theres hundreds of miles between us, but your always close to my heart. Thank you 🙂

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