As a young girl growing up, I thought my dad could do just about anything. And one thing he excelled at was making my favourite traditional Tirolean treat. The smell of baking Kiachln drifting from the oven whilst the sauerkraut steamed, was something that the whole family would sit around the kitchen table in anticipation of, and I remember those times with great fondness.
So when it came time to learning how to make Tirolean Kiachl, who better to ask than the master himself? Below then is my dad’s special recipe. And before you attempt to make it, please remember these wise words he once told me: “anyone who does not cook with love, merely prepares food.”
Ingredients to make about 28 Kiachls: 1kg of plain flour. 1-litre of lukewarm milk. 2 packets of dry yeast. 3 eggs. 62 grams of butter. 1 pinch of salt. 1 pinch of sugar and butter for baking (or if you prefer, a good sunflower oil)
Put the yeast, salt, sugar and flour into a Germteigschüssel (a mixing bowl with a lid)
Stir until mixed well.
Crack the eggs into a separate bowl.
Beat the eggs until they are mixed, and have a light froth on the surface.
Add the eggs to the flour mix and fold in gently.
Melt the butter in a separate pan.
Add the butter to the egg and flour mix.
Gently stir in the warm milk.
Stir the mixture gently.
Using an electric mixer, whisk together on full power for around five minutes, or until dough bubbles start to form.
Sprinkle some flour over the surface of the dough, so it does not stick to the lid of the bowl when it rises.
Now put on the lid of the Germteigschüssel and place the bowl into some warm water to ferment the mixture. The dough will start to rise. When the lid opens by itself, close it again. Repeat twice, and on the third ‘pop’ the mixture is ready for the next step.
Sprinkle flour onto a work surface, and cut and knead the dough into domes around the size of a jam jar lid.
Now you’re ready to cook!
Gently pull the dough apart, taking care not to create a hole in the centre of the dough.
Bake one after another.
The perfect accompaniment for Kiachls are cranberries, sauerkraut, or simply with some icing sugar.
Give yourself a well-earned glass of wine for making your Kiachls.
Cooking with my dad is really good fun. I should do it more!