Fritters are like the popcorn of the sweets. Small, addictive, you can fill a bucket with them and go eat while watching a movie. Then you end up in the hospital, but come and take away the moment of enjoying your fritters bucket 🙂 These are especially dangerous since the dough is lighter than traditional Spanish ones. Quark gives them a somewhat moist and very light texture. And the cream of the filling, very typical in Germany and used to fill many types of sweets, is also lighter than our traditional pastry cream, being mixed with whipped cream.
I can not write the post of this recipe without explaining a great peculiarity of the German language. It is very descriptive. They do not have a dictionary full of words for everything, like we do in Spanish. Take as an example, the name of this sweet, Quarkbällchen. It literally translates as “quark balls”. Why breaking your head looking for a new word when you can put several together and describe what the thing really is.
Thus they finish with buzzwords of kilometers in length. But in their defense I have to say that for those who do not know the language, in the end it helps to memorize new vocabulary because many new words are just combinations. And we struggle already enough trying to memorize words genders …
One thing that I find super curious about baking, is to find the common baked dishes between countries. I think that, unlike salty cooking, sweets are much more limited in terms of combinations and elaboration processes. The case of the fritters seems to me of the most special because they are made in almost all the countries of Europe, and always during Lent. There are differences, like this German version with quark, but in essence they come to be the same as our easter fritters.
These German fritters are typical for Lent, especially they are eaten in carnival along with the Krapfen, which are a kind of donuts. But they can also be found at other times of the year. I discovered them on one of the visits to the castle of Neuschwanstein (the famous castle that looks like Disney’s). You have to climb a path on foot, with an inclination that is not negligible, until you reach the castle. And just at the end of the climb, there is usually a small stand selling these balls. They are fried there in front of you and you eat them warm, which is how they taste better. But those are not stuffed with any cream!
I think I don’t have to tell you how you feel when at the end of that climb, your nose is flooded with the aroma of these delicacies, frying in oil. That smell … I have it engraved in my mind, and when you make the recipe your kitchen will smell the same and you will never forget it! The owner of that food truck is a real genius, he is placed in a strategic location and only he will know how many he sells per day. Truly brilliant! Now that I know how they are made and how easy it is, I put a stall next to them and see who sells more 🙂
Stuffed Quark fritters (Quarkbällchen)
- 2 eggs
- 100 g sugar
- 1 sacket vanilla sugar
- 250 g quark
- 200 g flour
- 50 g cornstarch
- 8 g baking powder
- Vegetal oil for frying
- Sugar for coating
- 250 ml milk
- 2 strips lemon peel
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 egg yolks
- 60 g sugar
- 25 g cornstarch
- 100 ml whipping cream (very cold)
Beat the eggs with the sugar for about 3 minutes, until the mixture turns whitish. Incorporate the quark and mix until it is integrated.
Add all the dry ingredients and mix just until there are no lumps, being careful not to knead too much because they can be hard.
Heat the oil in a high-walled skillet. You need about 3 fingers of oil height, it's quite a quantity. The oil should not be too hot. If you have a kitchen thermometer, the temperature should be 160 ° C. If not, you can do a test by dipping the tip of a wooden spoon and if bubbles come out, it is ready.
Grease your hands with oil so the dough does not stick to your hands and make balls about 3 cm in diameter. Fry 4 to 6 balls at a time, so they have space in the pan.
Fry for 4 minutes each, about 2 minutes per side. You will see that most of them turn around alone, it is very funny.
Remove the oil and drain the balls on a plate with paper towels. Allow to cool completely before stuffing.
To prepare the cream of the filling, Boil the milk with cinnamon and lemon peel. In a bowl, mix the yolks with sugar and cornstarch.
When the milk is boiling, remove from heat and strain. Pour only a little of the milk in the bowl of the yolks (if you take a lot of cooking) and mix with a rod until it is incorporated.
Pour the milk little by little and do not stop stirring. Put this mixture back in a saucepan and, without stopping to stir, heat until it starts to boil again. Remove from heat and let cool completely with the surface covered with a transparent film so that it does not crust.
When the cream is cold, whip the cream and incorporate the previous pudding by beating the two creams together until they combine well.
Fill a pastry bag with a pointed nozzle. Stuff the fritters with the cream, pricking them with the nozzle and pressing so that only a little cream comes out.
Coat the fritters already stuffed in sugar and enjoy!
You can ignore the option of stuffing them and they will be very yummy as well. You can freeze them perfectly and before consuming, let them defrost at room temperature.