This recipe is an adaptation of one in Jan Mitchell's Luchow's German Cookbook (Doubleday, 1952).
(Sauerbraten mit Kartoffel Klösse)
- 1 beef eye of round (5–6 lbs.), tied at 2" intervals (see Tying a Butcher's Slipknot)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 1⁄3 cups red wine vinegar
- 4 whole cloves
- 4 whole black peppercorns
- 3 yellow onions, 2 sliced, 1 finely chopped
- 2 dried bay leaves
- 1 carrot, cut crosswise into 1⁄3" rounds
- 1 rib celery, coarsely chopped
- 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 7 Tbsp. butter
- 1 1⁄4 cups flour
- 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 cup fresh bread crumbs
- 1 Tbsp. finely chopped parsley
- 2 lb. russet potatoes, peeled and grated
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 5 crunchy gingersnaps, crushed
Season beef with salt and pepper; put into a bowl. Add vinegar, cloves, peppercorns, sliced onions, bay leaves, carrots, celery, and 7 cups water (beef must be submerged). Cover; refrigerate for 4 days.
Remove beef; reserve vegetables and marinade. Pat beef dry. Heat oil and 2 tbsp. of the butter in a pot over medium-high heat. Brown beef, turning 2–3 times, 10–12 minutes total. Add marinade and vegetables; boil. Simmer over medium-low, covered, until tender, about 3 hours. Heat remaining 5 tbsp. butter in another pot over medium heat. Whisk in 1⁄4 cup of the flour and sugar. Cook until golden, about 5 minutes. Briskly stir butter mixture into beef pot; cook, covered, until beef is very tender, about 1 hour.
Make dumplings: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Put 1⁄2 cup of the flour into a bowl; set aside. Mix together chopped onions, bread crumbs, parsley, and salt and pepper in a bowl. Squeeze out extra liquid from potatoes; add potatoes to bread crumb mixture along with eggs and remaining 1⁄2 cup flour; mix well. Form potato mixture into ten 2 1⁄2"-wide balls. Roll balls in reserved flour, shaking off any excess, and gently boil, stirring only occasionally, until cooked through, about 20 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer dumplings to a large plate and cover with plastic wrap to keep warm.
Remove beef. Stir gingersnaps into gravy; cook over medium-high heat, stirring, until thickened, 14–15 minutes. Remove twine from beef; slice thickly. Arrange dumplings around beef on a platter; pour gravy over the top.