This warm dumpling and cured fish dish features the best of Mediterranean and Bavarian traditions. Sea Bass is flavorfully preserved in a 30-minute salt cure featuring the robust flavors of coriander, cumin, caraway seed and black pepper. Paired with a soft, homemade German egg noodle, this meal brings new – and delicious - meaning to culinary fusion.
For the Sea Bass, coarsely crush all of the seeds with mortar and pestle. Stir in black pepper to blend. Or, place seeds and pepper in large resealable plastic bag. Close tightly. Pound with a rolling pin, mallet or heavy skillet until coarsely crushed.
Mix salt and sugar in small bowl until blended. Pat fish dry. Place fish on rack in shallow baking pan. Sprinkle both sides of fish with salt mixture. Cover and refrigerate for no more than 30 minutes. Submerge fish in ice water to remove salt mixture. Pat fish dry. Coat fish evenly with crushed spice mixture. Set aside.
For the Spaetzle, bring 6 quarts water to boil in large saucepot. Meanwhile, mix eggs, milk and salt with whisk in large bowl. Gradually whisk in flour until blended. Pour and press the spaetzle batter in batches through a spaetzle maker or colander with 1/4-inch holes into the boiling water. Cook spaetzle until they float to the surface, about 2 minutes. Drain well. Set aside. Heat large skillet on medium heat. Add butter, sun-dried tomatoes, capers and garlic; cook and stir until butter starts to brown. Add cooked spaetzle; toss to coat. Cook and stir until spaetzle is lightly browned. Remove from heat. Stir in cream, parsley, lemon peel, white pepper and nutmeg. Keep warm.
Heat large skillet on medium heat. Add butter, sun-dried tomatoes, capers and garlic; cook and stir until butter starts to brown. Add cooked spaetzle; toss to coat. Cook and stir until spaetzle is lightly browned. Remove from heat. Stir in cream, parsley, lemon peel, white pepper and nutmeg. Keep warm.
Heat oil in another large skillet on medium heat. Cook seasoned fish on both sides until fish flakes easily with a fork, about 10 minutes per inch of thickness. Serve fish over spaetzle. Garnish with additional chopped fresh parsley, if desired.
Spaetzle Make Ahead Tip: Prepare spaetzle a day ahead as directed in Step 3, except rinse cooked spaetzle in a colander under cold running water; drain well. Refrigerate drained spaetzle in a covered glass dish or large resealable plastic bag. Remove from refrigerator. Let stand at room temperature at least 15 minutes. Continue as directed in Step 4 and Step 5.