Sunday, November 7, 2010

rainy sundays

Its a rainy sunday in germany.
no big deal in the states..just head to the mall.
can´t do that here. On sundays the only thing which you will find open besides gas stations are the bakeries in the morning. The rest of the day is quite.
This took some getting used to when we moved over here. At that time (2001) the grocery stores all closed by 12 noon on a saturday. There were many a weekend when we were caught short-handed. Now days the grocery stores are open until 8:00pm on saturday and longer on week nights. Certainly not the twenty four hour shopping as in the states. They have tried longer hours but it never really caught on.

I suspect that there are two reasons for this.
  1. people can think of better things to do at 11pm than go grocery shopping.
  2. nobody wants to work that late.
So I´ve seasoned the pork chops and have them simmering on the stove. The mashed potatoes and zucchini will follow in about an hour.
And I believe there is still a bottle 2007 J├╝rgen Ellwanger Riesling left in the cellar :-)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

The Laugenbrezel

We live in an area of Germany known as Schwaben (Swabia). This is located in the state of Baden- Wuerttemberg  in the southeast corner of the country. Every region has a very pronounced dialect.
That´s why our motto is "wir koennen alles ausser Hochdeutsch" which translates into "we can do everything except speak high (written) German."

Every region is also proud of their culinary specialties. Schwabenland has many.

One of my personal favorites is the Laugenbrezel. Consisting of wheat flour, malt, yeast, salt and water, this versatile baked good can be found eaten throughout the day. For breakfast and as a midday snack it is sliced open at the thick end and smeared with butter. For a quick lunch it is served as a sandwich with cheese or lunchmeat.

The uniqueness of the Swabian pretzel is the thick, fluffy midsection and crispy ends. Except in the large bakeries, the prezel is still hand-slung to this day.

This morning, while I was writing this, my loving wife went to the baker and picked up our Saturday breakfast. As luck would have it, they were still warm as I reached in to the bag to retrieve my first one. As with many ,there are different opinions on how things should be eaten. I prefer to break my pretzels into pieces and slather butter onto every bite. :-)


This is my attempt of giving a little insight on life in europe. Maybe shed some light on everyday life and travel.

Perhaps a little background info before we start.
I was born in germany but grew up in the states. From Kindergarten through high school and college. I then got married and moved back over here with my wife and daughter.
Most people over here are shocked when they find out that someone moved to germany from the US! And friends were dumbfounded as to why one would want to leave to live abroad.