Spoonfuls of Germany


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Salami, not peanut butter: A new, lively voice from America’s largest but silent minority

Salami sandwich, German style

In early February, the week of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s visit to the White House, The Economist ran an article about German-Americans entitled “The Silent Minority”. German immigrants, America’s largest ethnic group, “flavoured American culture like cinnamon in an Apfelkuchen”, the article said, yet they quietly assimilated and, because of the two World Wars and the Holocaust, tended to hide their origins rather than claim and openly display their heritage. Continue reading

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Oy! Easter eggs next to the Seder plate

Seder plate and Easter eggs

This might sound rather strange – I was initially introduced to Judaism, Jewish customs and traditions, and Yiddish language by a collection of Jewish jokes. As a teenager in Germany I found a yellowed paperback from 1963, Salcia Landmann’s Jüdische Witze, among my mother’s books. Mind you that these are jokes by Jews, not about them. I read the 200 pages of jokes from beginning to end over and over. It is the only book of jokes I ever read. Continue reading


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A tribute to my publisher

Gingko with autumn leavesallGeorge Blagowidow, the founder of Hippocrene Books, died last week. Without him, there would be no book (and hence no blog), Spoonfuls of Germany. And, without George, I would not have had landed on my feet so quickly when I immigrated to the United States in January 1998. Continue reading