Just when you thought I am done with posting a travel blog, I decided to surprise my parents and spontaneously flew to Germany for my dad’s birthday. Our “grandiose” planned surprise was detoured when I walked into the courtyard of my parents condo and my dad run into me….now what are the odds that this would happen? Mike and I had a different “master surprise plan” but now that was all obsolete…but it didn’t matter it was still a great surprise and my parents (and I) are super happy for this “unscheduled visit”.
Alfred went right ahead and stocked up on all my favorite snack foods, especially yoghurts and pudding, and made me his outstanding yummy Bavarian breakfast (fresh fruit, rolls with “Mett” – a seasoned ground pork that is eaten raw like Tartar) fresh German deli meat and of course Alfred’s special Bavarian Cheese Spread called “Obatza”. You HAVE to eat this cheese spread with really crispy fresh bread (we call it Farmers Bread) and/or Pretzels. I am sure it will be a hit if you make it for your own Oktoberfest party
The first day I can never really eat a lot since my system is all wacko from being up for over 30 hours but I tell you once the second day starts I am on – I mean I travel to Germany to see my parents even if there wouldn’t be food for 2 weeks but I am VERY very happy when my mum cooks me all my favorite dishes – we have a saying – Essen macht gluecklich (food makes happy).
The second night we had “Sauerbraten” a very traditional dish from the area I am from called “Nordrhein Westfalen” and the dish is called “Rheinischer Sauerbraten” which is a beef chuck marinated in a seasoned brine for 1 week, then cooked like a pot roast. My dad made homemade dumplings – a very work intense dish but absolutely worth it since you need yummy dumplings to soak up all that good gravy. You can always judge a cook by its gravy – and my mums gravy is finger licking good.
And today we had “Shopperln” also called Bauchstecherln – another work intense dish that pretty much costs nothing but time. Its made out of potato’s, eggs and red cabbage and if I would have guess I would say only 100 people in Germany even know what it is, its a very “old traditional Bavarian Dish”.
Between “Brunch” and dinner preparation we’ve done some shopping at my favorite Spanish store – Desigual – in Monchengladbach’s new Shopping Mall Minto – very similar to our US Malls even with a small food court with a Frozen Yoghurt and a Burger Place.
Now that I am almost gone for 20 years, its interesting to see how Germany is “Americanized”. Even our supermarkets are now MUCH bigger and have these humongous fridges filled with pre-packed goods.On the way home we saw some amazing street art.We finished off the second night with some beer tasting in the Hensen Brewery right below my parents condo. The “beer flight” consisted of Coffee beer, Alt (which comes from Dusseldorf), IPA (Indian Pale Ale) and a Pilsner. The “Alt” was our favorite.Here the exact analysis of the beers: Obatza Recipe: courtesy of my Dad 🙂
You can eat Obatza at an time of the day, for breakfast, or during the day as a snack or serve it alongside bread and crackers for dipping at a party. Ice cold German beer goes really well with this spread,
- 250 gr Camembert
- 150 gr Philadelphia
- 3 Tablespoons butter
- 1 small onion
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon milder paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon hot paprika
- optional: fresh chive
- Chop the Camembert into small (tiny) pieces and mash with a fork
- Mix in the Philadelphia and butter into the camembert
- Chop onion into very small pieces and add to the cheese mixture.
- Add the seasonings and mix well
- Optional: mix in or sprinkle chives onto/into mixture
- Serve with very crusty fresh bread or crusty rolls.