I feel like Germany often gets the short end of the stick in terms of which foods Americans associate with it. For example, when I think about Italy my thoughts turn immediately to decadent pasta dishes and wine. When a friend has a hankering for Japanese food my first instinct is to find a sushi place.
So I can understand where the desire to delegate a certain food group to a specific country comes from, but having spent the past month in Germany I can’t help but cringe every time a friend writes to me and asks if Germany has good food other than beer (which, fun fact, isn’t a food).
As such I thought it necessary to share five quintessential German foods that put American delicacies to shame. You can’t find these in the states so if you ever find yourself in Germany make sure you get your hands on these.
I know you’re probably thinking this ice cream looks too beautiful to eat and I’d have to (almost) agree with you. A bed of whipped cream, a heap of spaghetti-shaped vanilla ice cream and a delicious strawberry sauce topped with white chocolate shavings to imitate our favorite pasta dish. This, my friends, will forever be my favorite ice cream dish.
Alright I admit this dish might take some getting used to, but if you’re a bratwurst fan you have to try currywurst at least once in your life. Imagine a bratwurst topped with a curry/ketchup sauce and a bit of curry powder that gives it just a hint of spice. As a bonus food item for this list french fries with mayo is a popular side with currywurst as well. Don’t question me on this one guys just eat it.
I know I said earlier that beer isn’t food so you’ll have to cut me some slack on this one. Sekt is a sparkling wine that’s in the same ballpark as champagne, but it’s just different enough to merit trying it when in Germany. See if you can find a bottle of Sekt from the region you’re staying in along with a local beer or two as well. This would also make a great souvenir to ship home to your parents if you’re going for the “look how mature and adult-like I am” type of gift.
Döner (Pronounced Der-ner)
This pocket of deliciousness is kind of like a Gyro but with a Turkish twist to it. It’s the German equivalent of our fast-food hamburger, and you can find Döner shops on almost every street corner in a large city. When you order one make sure you have your camera ready because you get to watch the server shave the lamb off of a rotisserie.
If by some slim chance none of these food items have enticed you there’s always the traditional German bakery for you to fall back on. Germany has the most amazing bread and you can buy fresh sandwiches, cakes and a variety of baked goods in any bakery. If you’re gluten intolerant and visiting Germany I’m very sorry for your loss.
I really wish we had these foods in the US because they would up our food game so much. Until they come stateside I guess I’ll have to try recreating them (or just stare longingly at my photos and wish them here by sheer-willpower. We’ll see which option works the best).
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