German National Cuisine

Information about some of the dishes commonly eaten in Germany...

Each region of Germany has its own traditional delicacies, but there are some products which are found throughout the nation:

  • Sausages: Bratwurst (grilled sausage) and Bockwurst (boiled sausage) are sold in every city at street stands and restaurants. They are best eaten with mustard (Senf) and a bread roll (Brötchen)
  • Bread rolls: Brötchen come in all shapes and sizes, from wholegrain, mixed seed, and pumpkin seed to cheese, raisin or sesame. Fresh bakeries are in most residential areas and main shopping districts
  • Bread: Brot is also readily available. Fresh bread from the local bakery or organic food store comes in all shapes and sizes, from the classic baguette, to pumpkin seed bread, rye bread (Schwarzbrot) and the white loaf (Weissbrot)
  • Cabbage: Kraut is eaten in many different forms: boiled with vinegar, Sauerkraut is a common accompaniment to meat and potatoes, green cabbage (Grünkkohl) is traditionally eaten with Pinkel sausages (Pinkelwurst) at Christmas and stuffed cabbage (Kohlroulade) consists of pork mince and herbs rolled up in cabbage leaves and boiled
  • Asparagus: Spargel is eaten throughout the country when it is in season, often with hollandaise sauce and potatoes
  • Schnitzel: Veal or pork steak hammered thin, dipped in flour, egg and breadcrumbs and fried in oil is another German speciality eaten with potatoes or as a snack in a sandwich

Fruit and vegetables

While some supermarkets and most street markets only stock vegetables that are in season, many supermarkets also carry imported vegetables; regular (weekly) fruit and vegetable markets in cities and towns stock fresh, regional produce. Roadside stalls in the countryside sell fresh fruit and vegetables direct from the local farmers.

Game

Hunting is a widespread occupation in the many forests and mountains and wild meats, such as wild boar, deer and rabbit are specialities in many restaurants.

Breakfast (Frühstück)

The weekend culture in Germany provides exceptional opportunities for eating with brunch buffets commonly served in cafés and restaurants, many of which remain open until 15:00 or later.

Breakfast in general is an important part of the day and typically includes fresh bread rolls, various cuts of salami and ham, smoked fish, cheese, eggs, salads and yoghurt. Foreign influences include croissants, both plain and cheese filled, and a range of delicacies from Turkey.

Desserts

  • Stollen: This cake, often eaten at Christmas, is made of yeast, flour, water, a variety of dried fruit, citrus peel and almonds as well as spices such as cardamom and cinnamon
  • Black Forest Cherry Cake: (Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte): Known throughout the world, this layered chocolate cake is filled with whipped cream and cherries. Kirsch (Kirschwasser), a cherry liqueur, is traditionally added to the cake