German

Germany 2019

3/11/2020 10:08:00 PM

Guten Tag! The Paris blogposts are done, and now I'm finally blogging our Germany visit! We were there for three weeks in September, visiting family and eating all of the bread and cake. Wunderbar!

Kurpfalz Park, Germany

Ok let's start. Breakfasts! I love German breakfasts - all that amazing bread! I really love going to the local bakery each morning with my father-in-law and choosing the different bread rolls and pretzels and pastries.

Bread rolls at Grimminger

We occasionally did sweet breakfasts (Nußschnecken, Puddingplunder, Streuselplunder, Apfeltaschen etc.), but overall on this trip I was really feeling the savoury breakfasts - pretzels or different bread rolls with butter or ham and cheese. Sometimes I'd add some fresh fruit or a little Rahmjogurt (cream yogurt), and one morning I had sautéed chanterelle mushrooms with scrambled eggs, and another I did Bratwurstfilzl (raw bratwurst filling which you spread on bread, it's the best). And always a strong cup of filter coffee that my wife or father-in-law would make for me. So lecker!

Bread rolls

 Breakfast spreads

Bread rolls and savoury brekkies

Sweet breakfasts

Lunches, as I tell you every time, are the big meal of the day, rather than dinners. (Although when I'm on holiday in Germany, every meal is the big meal, hah). As usual, we had some excellent meals at home, made with love by Sandra's mum... as well as a delicious bacon lasagne made by Sandra's sister (looked like it would be way too rich, actually freaking delicious), and a big barbecue!

Clockwise from top left: Roast pork with crackling, red cabbage and dumplings; Bratwurst and spinach; Soup and potato pancakes; Bacon lasagne; Schupfnudeln; Roast beef with asparagus; Crumbed cutlets with gravy and croquettes

Barbecue! Potato Salad! My plate

And we did quite a few good lunches out with the family. As you can see, we usually go for hearty German fare. (And chanterelle mushrooms were in season too, and I enjoyed a gorgeous crunchy schnitzel with chanterelle sauce and Spätzle one day).

Top row R-L: Schnitzel with Pfifferlinge and Spätzle at Landgasthof Waldschaänke; Cordon bleu schnitzel with Bratkartoffeln; Grillpfanne with Spätzle, both from Zum Tahlblick
Bottom row R-L: Matjesfilet; Pretzel beer and dried sausage, both from Hagenbräu; Farmer's plate of Bratwurst, Blutwurst, Leberknödel etc. at Kreuzhofbauer

Other lunches were of the junk food variety, which I also love. CHIPS!

Clockwise from top left: Chicken and chips, Döner kebab from the local Rewe Centre; KFC; Currywurst at the Kurpfalz Tierpark

Dinners were primarily at home - simple things like cold cuts with cheese and bread, smoked sausages with carbs, and sometimes takeaway like a great Halbes Hänchen (half chicken and chips). We also had an awesome Gulaschsuppe at Sandra's uncle's house!

Aufschnitt dinner

Clockwise from top left: Frankfurter & chips; potato salad & frankfurters; creamy tortellini and frankfurter & chips; Fleischwurst sausage with pasta and scrambled eggs

Gulaschsuppe with bread

Halbes Hänchen, heck yes

Looking back over my photos, I'm surprised to see we only did two dinners out - one at a super cheap and atmospheric schnitzel place, Gasthaus zur Traube in the Odenwald, and the other at the local Greek and family favourite, Paradies.

At the schnitzel place, I had a Schnitzel topped with Kochkäs, (centre top row), which is a spreadable cheese from the Odenwald. It's mild tasting and really gloopy, and is lovely spread on a crispy crispy schnitzel. The schnitzels here were nice but not spectacular, but they were extremely well priced (max €8.90 for a small, max €11.90 for a large) and the atmosphere was really cozy and bustling.

Schnitzel at Gasthaus Zur Traube

I routinely avoid seafood in landlocked Lampertheim, and was surprised to see beautiful seafood being grilled in the open kitchen as we walked into Paradies. Well, I had to try the seafood mixed grill. ZOMG it was amazing! So fresh and cooked perfectly, not chewy at all, and so tasty. I was so impressed! 100% that is going to be my dish at Paradies moving forward.

Seafood Mixed Grill, Paradies

It was warm while we were in Germany, and we ate a LOT of ice-cream. I love German ice-cream parlours - such generous servings, so much whipped cream, all the sundaes, the Spaghetti-eis!

 Top row (L-R): Blueberry ice-cream & Spaghetti-Eis at Limonciello; Mango & cream cheese salted coconut at Coccola in Heppenheim
Middle row (L-R): Yogurt/strawberry/honey-quark & mixed scoops at Vannini; Kid's scoop at Oberfeld
Bottom row (L-R): Schwarzwaldbecher & Iced Coffee, Hazelnußbecher, Mixed ice-creams at Oberfeld

I go through phases with regards to German cake - on previous trips I've either been eating them ALL THE TIME or avoiding them totally, overwhelmed by the portion sizes and the aggressive percentage of whipped cream. This time it was definitely a total cake fest! Loads of afternoon Kaffeeklatches! Here are some of them. Most of these were from local bakeries Schmerker or Schmidt's, and the cherry crumble cake in the top row was made by my sister-in-law. They're all good, but my absolute favourites are the Bienenstich (top row left, bottom row second from the left), and of course Black Forest cake (top row second from the left).

Cake!

Kerwe was on while we were in Germany, which is the big Lampertheim festival. (Lots of cities have their own Kerwe). It's like a big street party or fair, with rides and food and drink stalls. Kerwe festivals go back to the middle ages and I believe they used to be organised by the church, but these days are organised by the local council and town clubs. It was really fun! And I love fair food!

Pork knuckle, bread and beer at Kerwe

Kerwe! Clockwise from top left: Local wine and Schmalzbrot (lard on bread); Thüringer sausage; Chimney cake; WAFFLE; Kerwe

On this trip we drank a lot of Neuer Wein ("new wine"), which is wine that hasn't yet undergone fermentation. They're only available at a particular time every year, and over the trip we picked up a few from the local farms to try. They come in bottles with ventilated lids (store them upright!) because they keep fermenting and producing gas, and you don't want the bottles to explode. The flavour changes significantly over time, so you can taste the difference if you have a little bit each day. I can't say that I loved them - they ranged from super sweet to super acidic and generally tasted quite thin - but I was happy to try, and it was nice to connect with wine as a locally made, seasonal item, rather than a random product that you pick up at the bottle o without thinking about it.

Neuer Wein / Federweißer

But speaking of wine as a commodified product... I inexplicably developed a taste for Weinschorle (wine spritzers) on this trip. I just found them really light and refreshing, and nice to have on a warm afternoon out in the garden. Cheapish white wine or rose wine with soda water or lemonade. Yes, I am an 80s housewife.

Weinschorle Rosé one litre. And what are you drinking today?

Slightly random thing to share - I found this Tête de Moine cheese at the supermarket and had to buy it. I remember eating it as the cheese course at an extremely fancy degustation meal in Melbourne, where it was served with great fanfare using a special little spiral slicer contraption. In Germany it was a regular supermarket cheese! (Kaufland, from memory).

Tête de Moine cheese

One afternoon, Sandra's parents took us to Kirchberghäusel in the town of Bensheim - it's a cute little cafe high on a hill (with a lonely goat), with great views of the town. Cakes were lovely too!

Cake! Pflaumenstreuselkuchen, Apfelstreuselkuchen, Kaäsekuchen

View from Kirschberghäusl

One evening we went for drinks and snacks with Sandra's mum at this bar/pub on the Rhein river, which had lovely views at sunset. Sandra's mum had Schmalzbrot (bread topped with lard with crunchy bits inside); Sandra had a Frikadellen bread roll, and I tried a Zwiebelkuchen with a rose wine spritzer (of course I did). Zwiebelkuchen was really yum - it's a thick savoury yeasted dough, topped with sautéed onions. I definitely feel this is something I should learn to make at home.

Cafe on the Rhein - Schmalzbrot, Zwiebelkuchen; Frikadellen Brötchen

Another day we made an expedition to the Kurpfalz Tierpark, a big animal park in Wachenheim. They had lots of local animals (donkeys, deers, lynxes, wild boars, wolves etc.), rides, food and so on. Fun family day!

Wutzel the mascot

My parents-in-law went on the sleds, but that was far too energetic and dangerous for me (hah) - I much preferred taking a swan-shaped paddle boat around the lake and watching the ducks. (Wow, I really am an old woman).

Swan boats

Another day we drove out to Heppenheim to see the old city, get ice-cream and do a bit of shopping. It was really pretty! (I also LOVED the salted coconut cream cheese ice-cream at Cocola).

Heppenheim

Ok, last thing to tell you about! One of the local bakeries, Schmitt's, sells bread slices by weight, so you can just buy one or two slices of each type of bread and not be stuck with a whole loaf. Genius! I love this idea so much and wish they'd do it here! (Schmitt's also does excellent cakes - I particularly like their crunchy-topped custard-filled Bienenstich).

Bread by the slice at Schmitt's

Ok, that's it! What a fantastic trip. I always love going back to spend time with family and eat all the food!


Previous Germany posts:

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3 comments

  1. Great post but now the "odl lay hee hoo" is on repeat in my brain!! Love the idea of selling bread by the slice!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Woah!! As a massive carb lover this is everything that I want and more. So now Germany is on my list :D

    ReplyDelete
  3. > Other lunches were of the junk food variety, which I also love. CHIPS!

    Yes!

    ReplyDelete

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