German Culture

Francine A. McKenna

Germany is a "Bread Paradise". With over 3050 registered varieties, almost all available types of grain used, from wheat, rye, barley and oats to millet, corn, rice and potato starch. While bread rolls go under so many different names in the various regions it is easier just to point.

Francine A. McKenna

Bavarian Donuts, known as Auszogne or Knieküchle, are a "Kultgebaeck", and like many things, their origins were probably in a medieval German monastery. Once a treat to look forward to during church holidays and festivals, now they are enjoyed throughout the year.

Francine A. McKenna

They are "Harbingers of Spring", bringers of babies, stars of myth, superstition and a theme route. Storks...high on the list of Germany's favorite wildlife, it's "celebration time" when they return to their nests on cliff-ledges, rooftops and chimneys, after wintering in warmer climates.

Francine A. McKenna

Europe lay in rubble, and the winter of 1946/1947 was the coldest in living memory. Known in Germany as the time of "Weisser Tod", white death, and "Schwarzer Hunger", black hunger, hundreds of thousands died. Weihnachten was different that year, New Year and Spring held no promises.

Francine A. McKenna

Twisting the Rule Book was the name of the game for Medieval monks during Fasts such as Lent, and this 13th century recipe is with chicken breasts rather than the Beaver Tails they used in the middle ages. Fish not Fowl, as living in water they were allowed...and with chicken it is delicious.

Francine A. McKenna

Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter, every change of season is makeover time for Germany's flower boxes. Colorful plant filled containers are everywhere, a wonderful sight on door stoops, window ledges, trailing from apartment balconies, down historic buildings and ancient farmhouse walls.

Francine A. McKenna

A "madness" sweeps through Germany during the brief Spargelzeit...springtime's "White Asparagus" season. The first, and delicious, symbol of spring, its season begins around mid-April and ends on June 24. Feast day of St. John the Baptist.

Francine A. McKenna

Special beers and secret recipes made sure a Lenten Fast was never all about deprivation for German monks, but their traditions, and fast breaking recipes, soon spread outside monastery walls. Including "Herrgottsbescheisserle" those "Little Cheaters of the Lord", an over sized ravioli.