Monday, June 09, 2008

Cibo in Germania

Finally I have some time to complete my little series about the trip to Germany! The last post was meant to be dedicated to German food.
I was quite impressed by the quality of the food found in all the restaurants I went to in Germany. When I was by myself in Cologne I was really mostly randomly choosing places to go, and I always found something good. However, I didn't go to many 'traditional German' places. It is quite true that traditionally, German people like a lot of meat (sausages especially) and potatoes, which is for example what we were given all the time at the conference in Mainz. Since I'm not too much of a fan of this food, I went to different places. For example, in Cologne there were restaurants presenting food from all over the world, and I tried both a Thai and a Spanish place which were really good. Such a variety would be impossible to find in Italy, for example.
More in details, in Mainz, Vardha and I went to a really good 'international' restaurant, called 'The Holy Spirit', which was in a building that used to be a church, and I had a delicious trout, while Vardha had a quite good pizza. Both the atmosphere and the food were very pleasant.
I had the best food with Michael, in Constance. He knew where to go! When I arrived, we went in a nice little place which had very good wine, and where I tried a traditional German dish which wasn't meat-centered, and made me very happy: 'Kässpätzle'. Spatzle is a type of hand-made pasta, shaped similarly to the Italian trofie, in small bits, and that contains eggs. The version I had was served with a lot of cheese and onions on top. It was really delicious! Too bad I forgot to take a picture of it.
Then, when we went on Richenau, we had the best fish dish ever in a small place on the island. There was such a nice atmosphere: they grilled the fish on the spot, and everybody was seated together with the other customers, at long tables. Again, I was too hungry to remember to take a picture.. :(
But actually, some of the best food was what Michael gave me for dinner at his place. He said that in Germany people usually eat just some open-face sandwiches with ham and cheese and butter. The bread he had and the one we bought at Richeanu were just amazing. And the cheese and ham,.. too good to seem true, especially after living in the US for such a long time! Of course I forgot to take pictures again, but in this case, I asked Michael if he could be so kind and take some pictures for me next time he had his supper. :) And here is an example of a wonderful dark bread (I didn't try this particular type, but dark bread is one of my favorite). Thank you Michael! :)
I must admit: German bread is better than Italian bread!! I would have never thought I could say something like this, but it's really true. The variety of breads that they have is just tremendously superior to what we make in Italy as our daily bread.
Another really good German food are the cakes. Michael got me to try a delicious 'Mohn cuken', i.e. a cake made with a lot of poppy seeds. It was really good! Again, no picture :(
But here is an example of a typical window of a bakery in Germany (this is in Cologne).
This place was specialized in strawberry cakes, so I tried a slice just before leaving. Wonderful. :)
Another specialty in Germany are cheesecakes:
I usually don't like cheesecakes in the US. They are too sweet and rich for my taste. But I had to try one in Cologne, because they told me that they were a specialty. So I tried a cheesecake with cherry, and to my surprise, it was light and tasted a little like flan, instead of a heavy cheesecake. I really enjoyed it.
As a last food-related thing, I will show here 'currywurst'. I had to try this. It's the most typical street food that you can find in Germany. It's hard for me to imagine how they came up with this combination: it's a big sausage, which they serve with what they define 'curry', meaning a thickish sauce with the spice that everybody in Italy (and evidently also in Germany) think of when the word 'curry' is mentioned. Now that I know something about Indian cuisine, I understand what a weird concept this is. Nevertheless, there is a 'curry' spice, and it's the one used to top this sausage. Obviously, you have to have 'curry-wurst' with beer. So here was my order:
I must say that I really enjoyed both the curry-wurst and the beer. I usually don't like beer and can never finish a whole glass (not to speak about a pint..). But this beer was light and not too bitter and was perfect with the food, on a sunny day. I was so happy while eating this street food, so different from what I usually like :)
So this is basically it with my food experiences in Germany. I tried also an ice-cream in a 'gelateria italiana'. The owner and the waiters were really Italian (it turns out that most places that claim to be Italian in Cologne are really owned by and employ mostly Italian people). But the gelato.. quite disappointing :( - I guess one really has to go to Italy for a good gelato :)

1 comment:

Simona said...

Il pane in Germania e' buono, me lo ricordo.