Posts in Germany
From Nonna's Kitchen: Oma Susanne's Appelkoken

One of the most magical aspects of an heirloom recipe is that it can transport you.  It can take you to a simpler time and place.  A time when you were young, and childhood was filled with love from doting grandparents and dishes that represent who we are.  A bite of a dish like this will fill you up with warmth, happiness and a sense of family.  Our grandmother’s kitchens were a sacred place where love was in abundance and the stove was always working hard, making something good to eat.

I especially felt this when a recipe for Appelkoken was shared with my heirloom kitchen by Susanne Kidd, a German immigrant. Her beloved grandmother, Oma Hildegard, taught this recipe to her.  Susanne remembers her important task of helping her grandmother on New Year’s Eve when these delicious little donuts are made.

Susanne’s job was to fetch the apples, left over from the fall harvest, from the cellar.  The apples may have been a bit wrinkled but with a good peeling, a fine chop, they were ready to drop in the batter with the rum raisins and fine vanilla sugar.  As baker’s helper, she had the important task to taste the first batch to make sure they were acceptable.  Still warm, they were showered with powdered sugar and served to the lucky New Year’s guests.

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From Nonna's Kitchen: Omi Anke's German Potato Salad

When Anke Jacobs Gelbin left the hustle and bustle of downtown Berlin to come to the U.S., she thought it would be a quick, one-year stay.  However, American life in New Jersey agreed with her family and one year turned into 26 and counting.

I was lucky that Anke decided to move to Connecticut many years ago and was willing to pack up her sharp German knives, a pressure cooker, bags full of ingredients and drive to my house on a rainy Saturday morning.  I was taken by her delicious food, incredibly sharp wit and generous heart.  She quickly got to work as we simultaneously made goulash and German potato salad.

I was intrigued by this salad because if you Google German Potato Salad, there are about 500 versions.  As Anke explained, each German home has its own version.  Even her grandmother’s was a bit different.  Her grandmother used fresh cucumbers and parsley.  This version belongs to Anke’s mother Uda and it’s delicious.


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Sunday Brunch: Ya Wanna Go Dutch, Baby?

I’m a big fan of Sunday Brunch.  My kids love bagels and cream cheese on Saturday morning so on Sunday, I try to go big with a few main dishes, home fries, bacon and fresh fruit.  Recently, on a rare trip out for brunch, we ordered a Dutch Baby - a huge pancake covered in fruit, jam, syrup, confectioners sugar, or really, anything you want to top it with. It’s a great brunch option because its one huge pancake that cooks in the oven, allowing you to forgo the multitasking of flipping while trying to juggle the bacon, toast and coffee brewing.  So, join me on my journey to Germany this weekend and go Dutch!

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