Today we are sharing five different recipes for Czech sweet noodles. Each of these recipes is quick and easy to prepare and makes for a hearty snack or meal. Created during times when food may not have been as plentiful as it is today, this peasant food has survived through the years because of it’s delicious taste.
For me, noodles and these simple toppings were the defining dishes of my childhood. This is comfort food at its finest, folks and today we are sharing several ways for you to enjoy this minimalist meal!
In all of the recipes, we begin with a nice wide egg noodle. I purchase the ones we use in the ethnic food aisle at the grocery store and prefer the Manischewitz brand of wide or extra wide egg noodles. Of course, you can make your own fresh noodles – the way grandma did – but that’s very time consuming and these come out tasting just as good. These Manischewitz extra wide egg noodles are delicious and they do not curl like low budget brands. They lay in your plate just like homemade noodles!
You may notice some unfamiliar ingredients in the recipes. Believe it or not, when I was younger, these items could readily be found at any local market. However, as American cultural disintegration continues and everything is becoming ‘cookie cutter’ and ‘Walmartized’, it is getting increasingly difficult to find the old staples we grew up with. Thankfully, you can still order them online for home delivery. (Click on the photo of the product you want to place your order.)
Assuming you are cooking a 12 ounce bag, you should have between 10 and 12 cups of cooked noodles when you use the entire package. This will serve 6 people. The recipes, therefore, are created to have enough for six servings.
I often only pull out a handful (if I’m cooking for myself) and then top them with y favorites for an individual serving that makes a fast and filling meal.
For all of the recipes, bring a large pot of water with 1 teaspoon of salt to a boil. Cook the egg noodles at a boil until they are tender yet firm to the bite, about 8 minutes. This is the base for all of the following recipes. Then experiment with all sorts of toppings for a delicious array of flavors.
Sweet Noodles with Fried Bread Crumbs
So simple and yet so tasty! Nudle s osmaženou strouhankou is a great comfort food which when I was little, we always enjoyed as a meal.
- 1 stick butter (half for frying and half for mixing into the noodles)
- 1 cup breadcrumbs (homemade are best!)
- 3 Tbsp sugar
Cook noodles according to package instructions. Melt butter in a skillet or large pot over low heat. Add bread crumbs and stir until coated in butter and fry the breadcrumbs in butter until they are golden. While the noodles are draining and the pot is still hot, add the butter (so it melts a bit) and sugar. Mix until incorporated. Place into bowls and top with friend breadcrumb mixture. We often also sprinkle with some cinnamon when we make this version.
Note: If you want to kick it up another notch, when mixing the noodles with butter, substitute 3 Tbsp. of apricot preserves for the butter you mix into the noodles and leave out the 3 Tbsp. sugar to send this over the top.
Sweet Noodles with Tvaroch (Farmer’s, Ricotta or Cottage Cheese)
The exact origins of Nudle s tvarohem are murky because noodles with farmers cheese were commonly eaten in kitchens from the Czech lands, to Poland, to Hungary, to Russia… It was quite popular in Jewish kitchens where it’s called lokshen mit kaese in Yiddish. Czechs know it as Nudle s tvarohem.
Tvaroch is difficult to find in the United States, so a good substitute we like is either Farmer’s Cheese, Ricotta or Quark. You may have luck searching in your local health food store. We live close to a Publix market and they carry a lovely Farmer’s Cheese.
Farmer Cheese is a cultured soft cheese made from an Old World European recipe. It adds unmistakable Czech flavor and texture to the eating experience. This cheese is very low in fat, cholesterol and calories and it has a distinctive, slightly acidulous, pleasantly smooth flavor. Farmer cheese is composed primarily of dry curds, which contribute to its slightly granular texture. Slow draining helps retain much of the whey and maintains a good degree of moistness. This cheese is a veritable powerhouse of nutrients. It is considered to be one of the very few nearly complete foods. It is as nutritious as it is delicious! (And it’s Kosher too!)
- 1 package farmer cheese (crumbled and broken into little pieces)
- 6 Tbsp. butter
- 3 Tbsp. granulated sugar
Cook noodles according to package instructions. While the noodles are draining and the pot is still hot, add the butter (so it melts a bit) and sugar. Mix until incorporated. Transfer noodles into serving bowls and top with farmers cheese and some sugar. You can add cinnamon and/or raisins as well.
Sweet Noodles with Poppy Seeds
Now you can prepare this traditional nudle s mákem dish for your children. Czech kids love them – and not just children. Kids and adults alike enjoy this classic way of preparing these delicious noodles.
Traditionally, the poppyseeds were ground in a poppyseed grinder, which are not in your typical American pantry. This is why we recommend the following ingredient to make these.
I was so glad to finally locate this product again, as it is become rather obscure and hard to find in grocery stores. Granted, it has corn syrup and loads of sugar – but if you only indulge in this sweet treat every now and again, who cares? The taste is soooo good, it’s worth it. You can also make this with soaked poppyseeds, but I’ll be honest – it’s not the Czech way.
- 1 can poppy seed filling OR 1 cup poppy seeds soaked overnight in water (or rum)
- 6 Tbsp. butter
- 2 Tbsp. powdered sugar
Cook noodles according to package instructions. While the noodles are draining and the pot is still hot, add the butter (so it melts a bit). Return the noodles to the pot and add the poppyseed filling or drained, soaked poppyseeds. Stir until incorporated. Transfer into serving bowls and dust with powdered sugar.
Sweet Noodles with Nuts
How can I say I like one more than the other? If I am honest, I favor them all! The nuts carry a heavier protein this making this meal seem more filling than the other versions. I’ve made it with ground walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds and cashews. In this version I made it with ground walnuts.
The recipe I’m sharing today is for sladké ořechové nudle is an easier version than making them with your own roasted nut. The filling has a wonderful taste and we make it this way for both ease and flavor.
Do not be fooled by the name, this is completely different than the almond paste that you may know as marzipan. This is a paste of almonds which are ground very fine and it has more of a jam-like texture. You can grind and lightly toast your own nuts, but this is sweet goodness in a can. We love this product and have made delicious walnut rolls using this when in a hurry.
- 1 can almond filling OR 1 cup ground nuts, toasted on 2 Tbsp. butter
- 6 Tbsp. butter
- 2 Tbsp. powdered sugar
Cook noodles according to package instructions. While the noodles are draining and the pot is still hot, add the butter (so it melts a bit). Return the noodles to the pot and add the almond paste or toasted nuts. Stir until incorporated. Transfer into serving bowls and dust with powdered sugar.
Sweet Noodles with Prune Butter
Prune butter is known as povidla in Czech. It is also more commonly known as Lekvár, a very thick, sometimes coarse jam of pure ripe fruit originating in Central and Eastern Europe. It is usually made of fruits like apricot, peach, strawberry, plum, prune, raspberry, cherry or sour cherry, but apples, green whole walnuts, muscadine grapes or figs may also be used.
Unlike marmalade or jam, it is typically produced without sugar, reduced down to a dark sticky spread that is naturally sweetened by its own sugar content. It has been around a long, long time. The first use of the term lekvár was noted from before 1350, used by medical practitioners as a medicinal paste or syrup to hide the medicine taste. The word povidla or povidlí has been documented in Czech since the 14th Century in Klaretův slovník (Klaret’s Dictionary).
It’s thicker than any plum jam and the taste is so distinctly Czech, stirring it with the noodles when making povidlové nudle will take you back, I promise, if you ever had a grandmother or aunt make this dish for you.
This is a delicious product. It is hard to find in most stores anymore and we are so happy that Amazon still carries it. We use this filling in buchty (sweet buns), koláče (kolache) and crepes. You can also use it to fill Christmas cookies and on bread as a spread. I eat it with a big spoon straight out of the jar until the jar is empty. There… I’ve confessed!
- 6 Tbsp. butter
- 6 Tbsp plum butter (or take approx. 10 prunes and pulse them in a food processor with a Tbsp. or water)
- 2 Tbsp powdered sugar
Cook noodles according to package instructions. While the noodles are draining and the pot is still hot, add the butter (so it melts a bit). Return the noodles to the pot and add the plum butter. Stir until incorporated. Transfer into serving bowls and dust with powdered sugar.
I think of any of the above as the Eastern European versions of boxed macaroni and cheese which after all, is a culinary staple of youth, is it not? Except in my opinion, these are much more flavorful and better for you and no matter which of the above toppings you decide to use – they all taste distinctly Czech!
Absolutely satisfying, warming, sweet… true comfort foods.
They taste like home.
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