Blood Dumplings

by Jerome

Here is how my dad and I made "Crub" as we called it.

1 quart of pork blood poured into a large mixing bowl and add three quarts of water. Now begin mixing sifted flour into the blood and water. Once this gets too heavy for a small mixer, you'll have to begin working the flour into the mixture with your hands. Have someone else help by adding small amounts of flour while you mix this dough with your hands. It's going to become thicker and working it difficult.

Once it has become thick and you can form a ball, stop adding the flour and begin to form your dumplings. We always tried to make the dumplings about the size of a soft-ball. Taking some of the dough, cut it with a sharp knife away from the rest of the mixture. Now slice into the ball you've made about half way through and add about a golf-ball size piece of leaflard (pork fat). Now shake some salt and pepper on the leaflard (you be the judge as to how much salt and pepper to shake on it). Now close up the slice and pinch it back together and roll the dumpling around in some flour and set it aside and begin cutting out another dumpling from your dough and do the same again.

My dad and I always use large canners to boil our dumplings in. I think he used to fill them about two-thirds full of water and start the water boiling. Once the water comes to a boil and you have your dumplings made, it's time to begin adding them into the boiling water. Now when doing this, you'll need a very large spoon, and I mean a very large spoon of some sort, to stir the dumplings and keep them from sticking to the bottom of the canner.

My dad and I used two canners on the gas stove so we could cook our dumplings faster because the cooking time is 3 hours. We could get 12 to 14 dumplings in one canner. I should also add that you won't have to stand there and stir them for 3 hours to keep them from sticking to the bottom of the canner. I would say that 20 to 30 minutes worth of stirring would be enough time for them to become hot enough to begin floating on their own. From the time you drop your first dumpling into the boiling water, begin timing that canner and just keep the water boiling for three hours. Now it's a good idea to use the cover to hold the heat in, but look inside the canner and if the water is boiling away (and it will), it's a good idea to have another kettle of already boiling water to add as needed.

Now it's time to lay out some sheets of wax paper so that when the dumplings are done, you'll have a place to set them out and let them cool. My dad always had to have one fresh out of the canner and eat right away. Okay, three hours have gone by, and it's time to take out your dumplings and let them cool. Place them on the wax paper for cooling. Once they are cool they can be wrapped up in wax paper or aluminum foil, placed in ziplock bags, and put in the freezer for future use.

Now comes the messy part, cleaning up the canners. There will be some caked-on stuff on the bottom and some loose in the water. Strain the water as you pour it out, so you don't get this messy stuff going down your drains. Now you'll have to clean out the stuff that was left behind and throw it away. Wash the canners with soap and water and, yes, you will have to use something like a small spoon to clean the baked-on stuff off the bottom. Clean your canners real good and put them away for other uses.

Here is how we prepared our Crub for a meal or having it for breakfast. Take and thaw out what you think you'll be able to eat. Once thawed, begin chipping pieces off the dumpling, like you were going to make American fries out of them, into a frying pan with some margarine in the bottom of the pan. Once you have them chipped-up, start a flame under the pan and begin to heat them up. When the chips become hot, pour cream or half-and-half over them and let this thicken. When the cream or half-and-half has thickened, turn the flame off, put some on a plate, shake a little salt and pepper over them, and eat.

It's a lot of work and hard work to make these. I didn't mind helping my dad make this because I enjoyed the rewards of eating them later. They were, at times, all we had for supper one night, or a good way to start the day for breakfast. They are very filling and stood with a person on a cold winter day.

This is how I remember to make them. Thank you Dad, thank you. There were so many things you did I never had the chance to say thank you for. I know you're watching me from some place, and I hope you don't mind me sharing this with others. I know you don't mind, because you were always a giving kind of person. Thanks again Dad for everything!

Comments for Blood Dumplings

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Blood Krub
by: Anonymous

My dad was Norwegian and My mom was German/Polish and she would occasionally make blood Krub until we moved from western Wisconsin. I was told I like it when I was very young. Later, in the 70s, she made some and I didn't want to touch it.

The reason I'm writing here is that her recipe had "cracklings" in it instead of lard. Cracklings are those little crispy bits, like small pieces of pork rind, created when you render lard.

If my memory is correct she also added some rice to the mix. Otherwise I remember it as being pork blood, flour, cracklings, rice(?), and maybe salt and nutmeg.

by: Anonymous

I have not tasted crub since the fifties when we lived with my Norwegian grandparents, but i still remember the spicy aroma of blood balls simmering in milk, and the taste was out of this world. Oh to taste crub again, but unfortunately i am nowhere near pig slaughtering to fetch the blood in a timely fashion and make the stuff. It's on my bucket list

Gloria Hansen
Elliot Lake Ontario Canada (grew up in Kipling ONtario)

"blood balls"
by: G Denker

Interesting recipe, as it sounds like something I enjoyed during my early years.

My parents were both of third generation German heritage. Both sides were from the Schleswig-Holstein area of northern Germany. Ours was a farm family in northeastern Nebraska, and in my early years "blood balls" were a fairly frequent item on the breakfast table.

Our blood dumplings were as described in this recipe, with the exception of my recollecting a few small chunks of lard mixed throughout the dumpling.

The dumplings were boiled and frozen. When it was time for use, they were thawed, sliced into chunks, and fried. At the table they were eaten with dark corn syrup on them. A very rich tasting food.

My parents took their hogs (and cattle) to the local locker plant for butchering, where the blood was collected for us along with the head, fat, and many internal organs.

Our enjoyment of "blood balls" stopped in the late 1960's when (as I recollect being told) the state of Nebraska came with some sort of regulation where the local locker plant could no longer collect the blood.

I dearly miss those "blood balls", along with the home smoked sausage, canned meat and headcheese (nothing at all like what you find in stores). The one thing I never developed a taste for was the brain sausage my uncle who farmed nearby enjoyed.

Father often said Mother used everything from the hog except the squeal.

Blod Klub
by: Anna Marie

My family has been making this every winter since they came to this country. It's a big ordeal, with my mom and sister making it in the morning and the whole family driving sometimes hours to join them and eat. We eat it straight from the pot too, smothering each bite in a pad of butter on our plates. We fry up the leftovers with bacon and onion. I can't wait to teach my own kids how to make it! Thanks for sharing!

by: Carol from Montana

My grandmother & her Norwegian cronies would all get together in the fall when the pigs were butchered and make this for all the families. It seemed like it was always late October and we would eat this around Thanksgiving. They would make lefse at the same time so Grandpa would always bring us both. I know it sounds disgusting to some people but it is a wonderful meal. The flavor is similar to meat with gravy on it and the texture is chewy. My brother and I (we are in our fifties) remember this food as being the best there is. I didn't care too much for lefse so was almost drummed out of the Norwegian family. My Gramdmother version was made with cooked mashed potatoes, flour and blood, and I am not sure if there was pork fat in the middle but there may have been since it did have a bit of a bacon overture in the taste. It always came in a big roundish lump and Mom would cut it into cubes about 1 inch or so then fry them in butter until warm and kind of crisped and then put cream or milk over it so it made a gravy. My mouth is watering just thinking about how it tasted. thanks for the memories - my grandparents played a very big part in my childhood so this is a very special memory for me.

Blo Klubb, Krub, Blood Dumplings, Etc.
by: DHedahl

When I was 11, we lived on a farm in Minnesota. When Dad butchered a pig, he would catch the blood in a large dishpan and had me add clean snow and keep stirring the mixture. The recipe above is what me mother would use. However, she sewed sacks to put the mixture in so it wouldn't fall apart.

I don't know how she could stand to make it because she had a phobia about blood. She didn't eat any but prepared it and served it to the rest of the family. She would remove it from the sacks she had made and slice it and put in a frying pan and cover it with thick cream.

When the cream had boiled down to butter, it would be ready to eat. I have some frozen right now that came from Wisconsin. We'll eat it later on in the week. It is tasty once in awhile. dhedahl@bresnan.net PARADE

My mistake!!
by: Jerome

I don't how to make potatoe dumplings but I think you have to shred the potatoes and add flour to them so they stick together. Not only stick together but stick to your ribs.

Made with Potatoes
by: Jerome

Yes! This is something else that was done back home and offered as a meal in the small cafes. I don't know how to make Potatoe Crub as we called it. But you do mash the potatoes and add pieces of bacon to the center for flavor.

I'm glad to come back to this site and see that others were searching for this and finding it here. This past winter my roommate and I were going to make some Blood Dumplings. We didn't get the chance to do so but hope to in the future.

For those who try this, please send me your comments at lesdantre@yahoo.com

My best wishes to all of those who enjoyed this unusual meal. Jerome

Could this be done with potatoes?
by: Kristy

This sounds a lot like a recipe I've been looking for on my father's behalf. His mother started to write it out for him when she was sick, but didn't finish it before she died.

Her list included potatoes instead of flour. I've found lots of Norwegian klub recipes but they didn't use blood. The other difference is that my dad remembered it as being shaped into a loaf and baked and the dumplings sliced off.

I'm thinking of trying your version with the potatoes to see it if it works out.

Blood Dumplings
by: Mark Hartman, MD

I grew up on a farm just outside Holstein, Nebraska in the 60s, 70s, and early 80s. Our closest neighbors/dear friends included us in their lives/celebrations as you might imagine, just like family. A side note, these people lived in a sod house until the early 1950s after which they moved a wood-frame house to their property, which became the home. Christmas time was a feast of unusual cuisine (at least to me as a kid) which included oyster stew, head cheese, and scrapple. But the one thing that was served that I and my family can't seem to get a handle on was called "Hans"(sp?). We were told by a nephew that it was a "blood dumpling" and the full name was "Hans en Spans"(not sure of name or spelling). My question(s) would be, Does anyone have "any" information regarding this dish? Your help would be greatly appreciated!

by: Angelika

Hi, I have recently been reading to my boys Emil's adventures by Swedish writer - Astrid Lindgren and this blood dumplings were the favourites of Emil's dad (and served on Xmas), I have been searching fro the recipe and found nothing in Polish (where I am from - in Poland we only have blood soup) and was about to ask my friend speaking Swedish to have a look a Swedish pages, but I tried with English, and here it is, with the fat inside, exactly as in Astrid Lindgren book. Thanks for that and I recommend Astrid Lindgren book, it is so funny, I laughted so much when the mixture for blood dumplings landed on Emil's dad face and plrch was everything he could say glued with the pastry :-)
If I get the blood I will make it for sure.

by: Jerome

It was my Dad's job when he was little to stir the blood while grandpa held the pig. There was a pan with ice in it and another pan sitting on top of the ice to collect the blood. Dad's job was to stir the blood and cool it so it wouldn't clot. If it clotted, none of it was good.

by: Larry

When we used to collect the blood, I believe we added salt to keep the blood from curdling.

by: Marie

Jerome, I've been searching the web to see if I could find a recipe with pork blood and flour which is then boiled. This looks very similar.

My Mother used to make something similar, only she shaped the mixture into loaves and boiled in a slatted laundry tub overnight. No lard in the middle. The loaves came out a dark crusty brown and when cooled we sliced it and fried in butter.

What color are the dumplings that you made?

Thanks so much for posting this, as I may try it to see if it's similar. I have been so hungry for what we called "red bread". Given the finest steak or some "red bread" I would certainly choose the later.

You may e-mail me at Mar3Cook@aol.com. Thanks again.

by: Jerome

Where to find the blood? We had a small town butcher shop back home. Wherever they sell meat, I would try asking the attendant if he or she can get you the blood. Chances are that it would come frozen for you. I would ask for a quart of frozen pork or beef blood.

My background is Scandinavian. This has been handed down from my Dad's family which have more Norwegian background. I guess you could say it's a Norwegian recipe.

by: Gerhild

Wow, Jerome, that is quite a lot of work. They must taste great, if you're willing to go through this.

I have 2 questions. First, where do you get the blood from? Second, do you know the nationality of this recipe?

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