A Swiss-German recipe known as Götterspeise (food of the gods) layers three key elements: a fruit-based compote, crumbled Zwieback (crisp twice-baked bread slices) and a vanilla custard. For my recipe, I use a sweet and slightly tart roasted rhubarb purée. It reminds me a bit of an English Trifle with its custard and fruit layers. I am normally not a huge fan of custard desserts or soggy bread, but this is so good!
Roasted Rhubarb Götterspeise
Makes 4 servings
2-3 Zwieback, crumbled
350 ml whole milk (3.5% milk fat)
½ teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
1 egg yolk
3 tablespoons (40 g) sugar
1 tablespoon (7 g) cornstarch
350 g (about ¾ of a lb) fresh rhubarb
1/3 cup (65 g) sugar
fresh strawberries, mint leaves and/or crushed Zwieback
1. First make the roasted rhubarb. Add the rhubarb, cut into 2-inch long pieces to an oven-safe dish. Use your hands to toss the sugar with the rhubarb until its evenly coated. Then, cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes at 180° C / 350° F.
2. Using an immersion blender, puree the rhubarb into a smooth mixture. Set it aside to cool.
3. While the rhubarb is baking, you can prepare the vanilla cream. First, whisk together the egg, egg yolk, cornstarch and sugar. Set aside.
4. Add the milk to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Then, pour the egg mixture in a thin stream into the milk mixture, whisking constantly so it doesn’t start to curdle. When it is well combined, return the pan to the stove and heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring frequently, until it thickens.
5. Pour the thickened cream through a sieve into a bowl. Let it cool to room temperature.
6. Finally, layer these three ingredients into small glass jars or cups, starting with the roasted rhubarb puree.
7. Then add a layer of crumbled Zwieback pieces and finally the vanilla cream. Place in the refrigerator to cool for at least two hours.
8. When the Götterspeise dessert has fully chilled and the Zwieback has softened, top them with sliced strawberries, mint leaves and/or finely crushed Zwieback.
Have you ever tried Götterspeise? How do you make it at home? Please tell me your experience with this Swiss-German dessert by leaving a comment below.