One of the most delightful surprises of my recent trip to Europe was the city of Frankfurt, a crossroads of culture, architecture and amazing food.
Natalie Haut, my host from Ketchum’s Frankfurt office, treated me to the incomparable experience of eating at one of Frankfurt’s famed apfelwein (apple wine) restaurants, Schreiber-Heynes Proletariat. We sat at a long, scarred wooden table, which probably dated back to the 1870s when the restaurant first opened, and had jugs of apfelwein with delicious, coarse German bread.
My favorite dish of the evening was Grüne Soβe, or green sauce, made with seven fresh herbs—parsley, chervil, chives, pimpernel, sorrel, borage and cress—and sour cream, then served with hard-boiled eggs and a side dish of roasted or boiled potatoes. Rumored to be Goethe’s favorite, it’s celebrated each spring at the Grüne Soβe Festival and culinary competition. With a glass (or three) of apfelwein, it’s a memorable dish!
Grüne Soβe (“Green Sauce”)
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
2 hard boiled egg yolks
1 tablespoon (15 ml) walnut oil (or other neutral oil)
Lemon juice to taste
2/3 cup (72 g) sour cream or crème fraîche
2/3 cup (72 g) full cream Greek yoghurt
2/3 cup (72 g) quark (a soft, unripened cheese with the texture and flavor of sour cream)
10 – 12 ounces (284-340 g) fresh herbs, roughly equal amounts of parsley, cress, chives, borage, salad burnet, sorrel, chervil
Freshly ground pepper
8 hard-boiled eggs
These herbs in German are: “Borretsch, Kerbel, Kresse, Petersilie, Pimpinelle, Sauerampfer und Schnittlauch” (borage, chervil, cress, parsley, salad burnet, sorrel, chives).
Mash the egg yolks with the oil and mix to form a smooth paste. Add a teaspoon or two (5-10 ml) of lemon juice. Mix this with the sour cream, yogurt and quark, add the herbs and then season to taste with salt, lemon juice and pepper.
Process in a blender until herbs are reduced to very small pieces and cream is bright green. You may choose to sieve the mixture into a bowl to remove large pieces of herb or egg yolk.
Serve cold over hard boiled eggs and hot, boiled potatoes.
Add dill and / or lemon balm.
You may want to use this sauce for a bread dip or salad dressing.
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