So you’re planning on visiting Germany and want to sample the local cuisine, but don’t know where to start? Here are a few traditional meals which are sure to get your taste buds going:
Currywurst is great as a quick snack on the run. It’s a cut-up sausage, slathered in ketchup, made as hot as you like it and then served in a little cardboard tray with a bread bun. The currywurst originated in Berlin in the 1940s and has remained a firm favourite ever since. If you happen to be in Berlin and want to know more about the famous currywurst, there’s the Deutsches Currywurst Museum waiting for your visit!
This dish isn’t for the faint-hearted, but if you really want to delve deep into traditional food, then maybe this is the meal for you. It literally means ‘ice leg’ and is made from a pickled ham hock. The meat is tender and is cooked slowly, which makes it soft, rather than crispy which may take some people by surprise if they aren’t used to it. As accompaniments to the dish, you’ll often find mustard and potatoes or sauerkraut.
This is a popular dish from Baden-Württemberg in Southern Germany and is comprised of egg noodles, cheese, onions and sometimes ham. This dish is perfect for a winter day as it contains just the right amount of stodge and leaves you feeling full and warm for quite a while afterwards! The total estimated annual commercial production of spätzle in Germany is approximately 40,000 tons, so it must be doing something right!
This dish also originates from the south and is similar to ravioli. It’s pasta parcels filled with various fillings such as spinach, cheese and meat. Maultaschen come in various sizes – some being a little bit bigger than ravioli to some as big as 12 cm in length! Since late 2009, Maultaschen has been recognised as a regional dish of Swabia by the European Union.
Knödel, also known as Klöße, are large, round dumplings made without yeast. What’s handy about them is that they can be used in savoury AND sweet dishes. They are normally used as a side dish for meat or in a soup and they can also be filled with plums as a dessert. The Knödel are very versatile so you’ll find many variations around the country.
The good old pretzel! Ok, this isn’t exactly a meal, but it’s great as a snack with your beer. The traditional pretzel is hand-sized and covered in big pieces of salt. They can also be sprinkled with sesame seeds, poppy seeds or covered in cheese. Sweet versions can also be covered in chocolate or nuts.
**** This has been a guest post by Sophie Hamilton, writer of many blogs including the hungryhouse blog. Hungryhouse is the UK’s leading online takeaway platform from which you can order delicious takeaways from restaurants in Birmingham, London, Manchester and many other cities.