This morning I made a sweet yeasted pretzel, a German Neujahrsbrezel. While waiting for the dough to rise, I checked my e-mails. Every single one from friends or family in Germany wished me “Guten Rutsch ins neue Jahr”, literally a good slide into the New Year. It occurred to me that I have said that all my life myself yet I have no idea where the expression originates. Continue reading
The terrorist attack on the Christmas market in Berlin yesterday taints with blood the image of Germany’s idyllic Christmas markets, which are famous around the world for their magic atmosphere. Christmas markets are an inseparable part of Germany’s Christmas traditions. You simply cannot visit Germany around Christmastime and not visit a Christmas market. Continue reading
There are many foods and recipes that carry the “German” label in the United States. Often they are a far cry from the real thing. The worst offender, in my view, is pumpernickel bread. In the US, it is almost always darkened and sweetened with molasses – something that is never done to authentic pumpernickel in Germany (find my recipe for real pumpernickel bread here).
The one big exception, in my view, where something German improved on this side of the Atlantic is kale (Grünkohl). Continue reading