Kid-friendly Austrian "Kaiserschmarrn" Torn Pancakes Recipe - Sticky Fingers Cooking
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Recipe: Austrian "Kaiserschmarrn" Torn Pancakes

Recipe: Austrian "Kaiserschmarrn" Torn Pancakes

Austrian "Kaiserschmarrn" Torn Pancakes

by Dylan Sabuco
Photo by Dylan Sabuco
prep time
10 minutes
cook time
10 minutes
makes
4-6 servings

Fun Food Story

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Austrian "Kaiserschmarrn" Torn Pancakes

Say it with me: “KAY-zuh-shmahn!” Straight from the heart of the Alps, this hard-to-say, fun-to-make, and tasty treat is all about embracing the messy and delicious! 

I challenge you to find one kid who wouldn’t enjoy making a great big pile of torn-up pancakes! And then, for more hands-on fun and flavor, they’ll top them with powdered sugar and homemade Tumble-Jumble Berry Compote!

Why not let Kaiserschmarrn Torn Pancakes set the tone for your next alpine adventure? I can’t imagine a more delicious way to power up for a day of snowball fights, icy expeditions, and snow fort construction. 

When you’re ready to refuel, you can keep the alpine vibe alive with “Rivella” Swiss Cream Soda, a nod to what’s known as the national drink of Switzerland.

Happy & Healthy Cooking,

Chef Erin, Food-Geek-in-Chief

Fun-Da-Mentals Kitchen Skills

  • crack :

    to break open or apart a food to get what's inside, like an egg or a coconut.

  • measure :

    to calculate the specific amount of an ingredient required using a measuring tool (like measuring cups or spoons).

  • mix :

    to thoroughly combine two or more ingredients until uniform in texture.

  • sauté :

    to cook or brown food in a pan containing a small quantity of butter, oil, or other fat.

  • separate eggs :

    to remove the egg yolk from the egg white by cracking an egg in the middle and using the shell halves, the palm of the hand, or a device to keep the egg yolk in place while the egg white falls into a separate bowl.

Equipment Checklist

  • Small bowl
  • Cutting board + kid-safe knife
  • Citrus juicer (optional)
  • Large bowl
  • Medium bowl
  • Whisk
  • Dry measuring cups
  • Liquid measuring cup
  • Measuring spoons
  • Medium sauté pan or skillet
  • Heat-resistant spatula
scale
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Ingredients

Austrian "Kaiserschmarrn" Torn Pancakes

  • 3 large eggs, separated **(for EGG ALLERGY sub 1 T chia seeds + 3 T water—more info below)**
  • 1 C all-purpose flour **(for GLUTEN ALLERGY sub gluten-free/nut-free flour)**
  • 1/2 C water
  • 3 T granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract **(for GLUTEN ALLERGY use certified gluten-free pure vanilla extract, not imitation vanilla flavor—check label)**
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • 3 T vegetable oil

Food Allergen Substitutions

Austrian "Kaiserschmarrn" Torn Pancakes

  • Egg: For 3 large eggs, substitute 1 T chia seeds + 3 T water. Stir and soak chia seeds in warm water for 5 minutes or until fully absorbed and thickened.
  • Gluten/Wheat: Substitute gluten-free/nut-free flour. Use certified gluten-free pure vanilla extract, not imitation vanilla flavor.
  • Soy: Substitute canola oil or other nut-free high-smoking point oil for vegetable oil, which usually contains soy.

Instructions

Austrian "Kaiserschmarrn" Torn Pancakes

1.
intro

"Kaiserschmarrn" (KAY-zuh-shmahn) was first prepared for the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph. Hence the name "Emperor's mess." The original recipe was made because the emperor did not like eating whole pancakes. Instead, the emperor always requested that his pancakes be cut into small pieces. This recipe takes that idea and runs with it. Think of this recipe as pancake "nuggets": small, bite-sized, and crispy pancakes that are the perfect finger food for your family's breakfast.

2.
juice + crack + whisk

Juice 1 lemon into a bowl. Then, get a large bowl and a medium bowl and separate 3 eggs, placing the whites in the medium bowl and the yolks in the large bowl. Set the large bowl aside and start whisking the egg whites with 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice (reserve the remaining juice for Tumble Jumble Berry Compote if making). Whisk until soft peaks form or for 3 minutes.

3.
measure + mix

Once the egg whites are ready, set them aside and measure the rest of the ingredients. Measure and add 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup water, 3 tablespoons sugar, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 3 tablespoons vegetable oil to the bowl of egg yolks. Stir until well combined. Then, gently fold in the egg whites. Once the egg whites have disappeared into the batter, you are ready to cook.

4.
science fun fact

Whipping egg whites makes for a super fluffy pancake. The albumin (a natural protein) in egg whites holds onto the air from whisking. Those fluffy whites will add their texture to your pancakes. Usually, once the egg whites are whipped to a peak, you would add cream of tartar to make the fluffy texture hold while baking. In this version, cream of tartar will be replaced with lemon juice. It will have the same effect of stabilizing the egg whites without any of the bitter baking soda and cream of tartar needed for other recipes.

5.
pan fry + tear

Heat a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Pour all the batter into the pan. Cook for about 5 minutes on the first side or until bubbles form and pop, leaving "craters" all over the pancake. After 5 minutes, using a knife or a spatula, cut the pancake into small pillow shaped pieces. Imagine making chicken nuggets out of pancakes while doing this step.

6.
sauté + sprinkle

Continue to cook the torn pancakes until golden brown. Imagine you are stir-frying the pancake nuggets. You can stir constantly until the pancakes are toasty. While the pancakes finish cooking, sprinkle them with a pinch of sugar. Serve alongside a drizzle of syrup and our Tumble-Jumble Berry Compote (see recipe).

Surprise Ingredient: Eggs!

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Photo by Circlephoto/Shutterstock.com

Hi! I'm an Egg!

"Specifically, I'm a chicken egg! Of course, there are eggs from all sorts of other creatures, but humans primarily eat the eggs of fowls, mostly chickens. Although, they will eat the eggs of ducks, geese, and even ostriches (the same as 24 chicken eggs!). Some people also eat reptile eggs and fish eggs (think caviar!)."

History

  • Some animals reproduce by laying eggs (or reproductive cells). These animals include fish, reptiles, insects, a few mammals, like the platypus, and birds, including ducks and chickens. 
  • What came first? The chicken or the egg? Were chickens first domesticated for their meat, or were they raised to gather their eggs for food? When early man first began raising chickens sometime before 7500 BCE, it may have been for their eggs. 
  • Eggs used to be carried in baskets. The first egg carton was invented in 1911 by Joseph Coyle, a newspaper editor from British Columbia, Canada, to solve a dispute involving broken eggs delivered in a basket. His design was improved upon in 1921 by Morris Koppelman, and then in 1931, Francis H Sherman of Massachusetts developed a carton from pressed paper pulp similar to what we use today. Egg cartons can hold 12, 18, or 30 eggs.
  • The white Leghorn chicken is commonly used for laying white eggs, and the Rhode Island Red and New Hampshire Red breeds, both reddish brown, are the primary sources of brown eggs.
  • The brown-colored egg tends to be more expensive than its white counterpart, usually because the hens laying brown eggs are larger and eat more feed, increasing costs to the farm. Other than color, there is no difference between a white and brown egg.

Anatomy 

  • Chicken eggs contain a yellow yolk, semi-transparent white, and an outer protective shell. A membrane (film layer) lines the eggshell; however, it is usually not visible unless you peel a boiled egg.  
  • The egg yolk provides the most nutrients for a developing embryo because it has more protein than the white. The yolk also contains all the fat and more vitamins, especially fat-soluble vitamins.
  • The egg white or albumen is about 90 percent water and contains no fat or cholesterol. It protects the yolk and is also a source of protein and a few vitamins for an embryo.
  • Chicken eggshell membranes can be used as a dietary supplement. The membranes are made up mostly of fibrous collagen type 1 fibers. 
  • According to the USDA, the eggshell comprises about 94 percent calcium carbonate and some additional elements, including protein. The calcium carbonate from eggshells is used as a dietary calcium supplement for people who do not get enough calcium from their food. 
  • There are 7 to 17,000 tiny pores on the shell surface, with a greater number at the large end. As the egg ages, these minute holes permit moisture and carbon dioxide to move out and air to move in to form the air cell. The egg can also absorb refrigerator odors through the pores, so always refrigerate eggs in their cartons.

How to Buy & Eat

  • You can buy eggs from farm stands and at grocery stores. Always open the lid of a carton and check the eggs you want to purchase to avoid buying eggs with cracked or broken eggshells that would have to be thrown away. Any bacteria present on the eggshell could enter through a crack and contaminate the egg inside.
  • Aside from their color, brown and white eggs are the same in every way, including taste and nutrition, so choose eggs based on price and quality, not on color. 
  • The three grades of eggs that determine the quality of the egg and condition of the shell are: Grade AA, A, and B. According to the USDA, Grade AA eggs have thick and firm whites and yolks that are high, round, and practically free from defects, with clean, unbroken shells. Grade AA and A eggs are preferred when frying or poaching. You would seldom find Grade B eggs in stores because they are mostly used to make liquid, frozen, and dried egg products. 
  • Various types of eggs are available at the grocery store, and some are more expensive than others. These include eggs from hens raised outside a cage but not necessarily outdoors (cage-free) or allowed to roam free outdoors in a pasture (pasture-raised). 
  • Eggs contain some omega-3 fatty acids, but eggs labeled as high in omega-3 fatty acids have more due to flaxseed or fish oil being added to the hens' diets. Other eggs are labeled "organic" if the hens are not raised in a cage, can access the outdoors, are fed organic feed, and are not given hormones or antibiotics. "Vegetarian" eggs are from hens that do not eat feed containing animal by-products. 
  • Store eggs in the refrigerator to keep them fresher, as they will age faster at room temperature.
  • Eggs are available year-round to provide delicious meals on their own and as an essential ingredient for the many baked goods and sauces that would never be the same without them.
  • Eggs are enormously versatile. The chef's hat, called a "toque" (pronounced "tōk"), is said to have a pleat for each of the many ways you can cook eggs.
  • You can tell whether an egg is raw or hard-boiled by spinning it. Because the liquids have set into a solid, a hard-boiled egg will easily spin. On the other hand, the moving fluids in a raw egg will cause it to wobble.
  • Whole eggs are eaten soft or hard-boiled, fried, or poached, or they are added to cake and other batters. Egg yolks are used in pasta, sauces, fruit curds, crème brûlée, and ice cream. Egg whites are part of meringues, angel food cakes, French macarons, and coconut macaroons. You can also use whipped egg whites to leaven (raise) a cake.  

Nutrition

  • A large, boiled egg is a good source of low-cost, high-quality protein, providing 12.6 grams with only 78 calories. 
  • Eggs are rich in vitamin B12 and riboflavin (B2) and supply varying amounts of many other nutrients, including a wide variety of other vitamins and minerals. In addition, the yolk contains a higher percentage of an egg's vitamins than the white, including all of the vitamins A, D, E, and K. 
  • Egg yolks are one of the few foods that naturally contain vitamin D. They also have choline. This essential nutrient benefits your brain, nervous system, liver function, and cardiovascular system.
  • Some people have an allergy or food intolerance to eggs, especially egg whites. It is one of the most common allergies in babies but is often outgrown during childhood.

What is "Kaiserschmarrn"?

Photo by Angelika Heine/Shutterstock.com
  • "Kaiserschmarrn" (KAY-zuh-shmahn) is a light shredded pancake popular in Austria and other countries that were part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Kaiser Franz Joseph I, the Austrian emperor, liked the pancakes and often served them for lunch with applesauce. He ruled the Empire from 1848 to 1916.  
  • The pancake is named after the Kaiser, and "schmarrn" refers to a scrambled or shredded baked good. Informally, it means a mess, mishmash, or nonsense.   
  • The sweet pancake batter is made of flour, eggs, milk, sugar, and salt and is fried in butter. Fruit and nuts are sometimes added to the batter. Two forks are used to shred the pancake while cooking in the pan. It is typically served warm with a topping of powdered sugar and fruit compote.

Let's Learn About Austria!

Photo by Trambitski/Shutterstock.com (Hallstatt, Austria on Lake Hallstatt)
  • Austria is a country in Central Europe. It is a landlocked country that lies mostly in the Eastern Alps mountain range. Germany is on its northwest border, the Czech Republic (Czechia) is to its north, Slovakia is northeast, Hungary is east, Slovenia and Italy are south, and Liechtenstein and Switzerland are west. 
  • Austria is a federation made up of nine provinces. Vienna is a province and the capital and largest city. The government is a federal parliamentary republic with a president, chancellor (like a prime minister), and parliament. 
  • The country's total area is 32,383 square miles, a little larger than the state of Maine in the United States. The population is over 9 million. The official language is Standard Austrian German, and there are three official regional languages: Croatian, Hungarian, and Slovene. 
  • Austria has been around since 960 CE when it was an eastern realm of the Duchy of Bavaria. Its borders and alliances have changed over the years, and it was closely associated with Germany for many decades. It became an independent sovereign state in 1955.
  • Austria is very mountainous due to the Eastern Alps running through it. Because of this, alpine skiing, snowboarding, and ski jumping are very popular. Sledding sports, like bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton, are also widespread. The Winter Olympics have been held twice in Innsbruck, Austria, in 1964 and 1976. 
  • The country has a primarily alpine or mountain climate. Grossglockner is the highest peak at 12,460 feet. Austria is the most densely forested country in Central Europe. The River Danube flows through the northern part of Austria. 
  • Austria has several lakes, including Hallstätter See (or Lake Hallstatt). Hallstatt is a picturesque town that sits on the shore of the lake. People have been mining salt in the area since prehistoric times. It is part of an Austrian UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Austria boasts several famous classical music composers, including Joseph Haydn, Michael Haydn, Franz Liszt, Franz Schubert, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. 
  • Austria's cuisine is from the Austro-Hungarian Empire (1867-1918) and European influences, like Balkan, Czech, French, Hungarian, Italian, Jewish, and Polish. 
  • Well-known Austrian dishes are "strudel" (layered sweet or savory pastry) and "wiener schnitzel" (thin breaded veal cutlet). Other popular foods are "kaiserschmarrn" (sweet shredded pancake), "sachertorte" (chocolate cake or torte), and "tafelspitz" (beef boiled in broth).
  • The Danish pastry originated in Austria and was brought to Denmark by Austrian bakers. 

What's It Like to Be a Kid in Austria?

  • Austrian kids have a lot of independence and are often seen playing outside. They attend school from 8 am to 2 pm. The school year begins in September and ends in July. 
  • Popular sports for kids in Austria are association football (soccer), skiing, and snowboarding.  
  • Kids enjoy going with their families to the Wurstelprater amusement park in the Prater, a large public park in Leopoldstadt, Vienna, where they can ride a 213-foot Ferris wheel. They can also visit Schönbrunn Zoo in Vienna, the oldest zoo in the world that is still operating. Or, they can check out the Kindermuseum (children's museum) in Schönbrunn Palace, also in Vienna.
  • For a snack or lunch, kids may eat open sandwiches with fish or meat or rolls filled with meat or sausages. For a traditional dessert, they may have Linzer torte (shortcut pastry filled with red currant, raspberry, or apricot preserves) or Linzer cookies, a sandwich cookie version.

That's Berry Funny

Did you hear about the angry pancake?

He just flipped.

THYME for a Laugh

How do you make a pancake smile? 

Butter him up!

THYME for a Laugh

What dinosaur loves pancakes? 

A tri-syrup-tops!

The Yolk's On You

What's the best pancake topping? 

More pancakes!

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