Nostalgia for a German/Austrian/Dutch breakfast.


Kim and I often feel nostalgic for our times abroad – the scenery, the people, the culture – and of course the food.

The other day, we were longing for the traditional breakfasts of central Europe. Or at least German, Austrian and Dutch breakfasts. We did a good job putting together a fantastically reminiscent meal of pretzel rolls, meats, cheeses, homemade Preiselbeeren jam (cranberry jam), homemade appelstroop (thick apple syrup), with tomato and cucumber.

When I was visiting a friend of mine in Cologne, Germany, her family’s breakfast table had an assortment of dense rolls, jams, chocolate spreads, cheeses and meats. My friend said she normally ate Meusli for breakfast during the week, but this was a special occasion, so they brought out the goods!

While Kim and I were eating our dinner, Kim said she could be in Austria right then, sitting in her host family’s kitchen. The only thing missing was the liverwurst pate!

Kim’s breakfast at our friend Barbara’s in Tettnang, Germany

When I was in Amsterdam for work, our hotel breakfast included slices of bread, salamis and ham, cheeses, tomato, cucumber, and of course Appelstroop.

Breakfast at my hotel in Amsterdam

A terrible photo of Appelstroop

So anyway, our dinner:

The Preisselbeeren jam and Appelstroop both turned out to be ridiculously easy to make.

Preiselbeeren Jam (Cranberry Jam)
On stovetop, cook cup of cranberries on medium heat. Spritz about half a lemon’s juice (a tablespoon) and add cinnamon, sugar. Cook until the cranberries have burst and become a spreadable delicacy!

preiselbeeren jam (with ricotta on bread)

Appelstroop (Apple Syrup)
The appelstroop is made of apple juice, lemon juice, whole anise, cinnamon and sugar. In a saucepan, add 6 cups of apple juice, two anise (seeds?) and a teaspoon or two of cinnamon. Boil until it’s 1/3 the amount, then add 1/2 cup of sugar and continue to boil until it’s a syrupy mass. BUT DON’T BOIL TOO LONG 0r the sugar will thicken too much, and you and that pan will be spending a lot of time with each other, you scraping off incredibly goopy syrup with a knife.

Anise – similar in taste as fennel, liquorice or tarragon. Pairs well with cinnamon.

Review: It was delicious of course! I love discovering food, or new ways of eating the same food, in this case, from different regions of the world!

-Beth

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4 responses to “Nostalgia for a German/Austrian/Dutch breakfast.

  • caron

    That cranberry jam sounds delicious! I’ll have to try it. The rolls also look wonderful. Breakfast really is the most important/delicious meal of the day.

  • Coffee and Crumpets

    Hi Beth and Kim! Thank you for stopping by my site. It is so true what you write, one of the lasting memories of any trip is the food! When I think back on my childhood travels, it’s the food I remember and especially great food, that’s very hard to forget. Looks like you created a perfect breakfast to relive your memories. It looks great! It’s what I miss living here, there aren’t any bakeries that serve European style breads and pastries that you can enjoy for breakfast with a great cup of coffee. I have searched…a lot.

    • The Fourth Broomstick

      And that’s another thing I miss about Europe (or parts of Europe?) – their coffee! The first time I went to France, I was mildly annoyed by the coffees – not only more expensive, but smaller! But a week in The Netherlands, drinking their freshly pressed coffees every morning changed my mind and I’ll never go back!
      -Beth

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