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Monday, September 5, 2011

How to make Plum Dumplings -Szilvas Gomboc

 Plum Dumplings! Or as it is known in our house; Gomboc! A few months ago friends of ours moved away and I did not have a chance to show them how to make Gomboc. Plum Dumplings are small Italian Prunes or Plums covered in a special dough, boiled and rolled in breadcrumbs sauteed in butter. They are a beloved dish in Europe, specifically Eastern Europe and each country has their own version with slight differences in the recipe. In our house, it is breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert when I make a large batch.
 I am sharing  the recipe I grew up with in Hungary.

 You will find the recipe at the end of the post. Here, I am going to walk you through the steps and give you some tips.
 You need to buy small plums, Italian Fresh Prunes is what I usually find at Costco in the summer. If you hurry, they might still have some.
 The dough is made with mashed potatoes, eggs, flour and salt. That's it. No yeast or other leavening agents. Boil your potatoes and mash them well while still hot. After I mash the boiled potatoes, I wait about 10-15 minutes for them to cool slightly, add the eggs and mix them with my electric mixer. The smoother the better. You do not want lumps of potatoes in your dough. Or at least as small and minimal amount as possible. (I usually get a few.)
 Here is how my dough looked like after I added the flour. The flour amount in the recipe is the minimal amount you should use. You may need to add more. On a humid day, I can easily use twice the amount of flour as the recipe calls for. The dough should not be sticky! This is a messy recipe, just a warning.
 While the dough is resting, split the prunes/plums and remove the pits. I try to make sure they are not halved all the way, but it does not always work out. You want ripe, but still fairly firm plums. Soft ones will just fall apart while cooking and you will have boiled plums floating in your pot.
 I like to add cinnamon sugar in the middle of each plum. I do not have any specific recipe or ratios. I just dump about 1/3 c sugar in a bowl and add about 2 Tsp- 1 Tbsp cinnamon, depending on how strong I want the cinnamon flavor to be.
1.: The dough rolled out, cut into squares.
2.:Plums with cinnamon sugar in the middle.
3.: Close plums.
4.: Wrap plums in dough and form a ball. Make sure seams are sealed.
 I did not have any pictures of the cooking process, because taking pictures with steam does not work. This picture shows the boiled dumplings being rolled in breadcrumbs.
 To serve, you can use more cinnamon sugar sprinkled on top.
 They are best with SOUR CREAM and CINNAMON SUGAR!



5 medium potatoes, peeled, boiled and mashed
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour or more as needed
18 damson or Italian prune plums, washed and pitted
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
1 1/2 cups fine bread crumbs
1/4 cup cinnamon sugar or more


  • In a large bowl, combine potatoes, eggs and salt. When well combined, add flour and knead in bowl until a soft dough forms. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest 30 minutes. 

  • Place a large pot of water on to boil. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to 1/4 inch. Cut into 2-3 inch squares. Place a plum with cinnamon sugar in the center of each square and fold dough over plum. Roll into a ball, make sure edges are sealed, moisten dough if necessary to seal. Carefully drop into boiling water. Cook until dumplings will float to the surface,then cook an additional 10 minutes. Sometimes dumplings get stuck on the bottom of the pot, gently loosen them. (Cooking times is about 30 minutes in all.)

  • Meanwhile, melt butter in large skillet, add bread crumbs and brown. Using a slotted spoon to remove dumplings to a colander to drain. Place dumplings in skillet, coating with buttered crumbs. Serve with more cinnamon sugar and sour cream.

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