Germany’s Christmas Markets have been around for hundreds of years. During the month of December, you can travel to a number of cities in the country to experience this wonderful annual tradition . And the recipe for success is pretty simple: spicy mulled wines, meats grilled over an open flame and enough confectionery treats to last you a full year. On a recent 5 day trip I ate my way through the markets and hope this small sampling of pictures is enough to get you to book your flight.
Glühwein and Beer
What is better than wine that has been infused with spices, warmed and served in ceramic mugs that can be enjoyed on a cold December evening? Possibly my favorite part of the food scene at the markets and a great reason to board that transatlantic flight.
Pickled fish with a strong vinegar base, cut with some raw onions and served on an airy roll. All for 3 euros. This was the perfect snack as I made my way through the aisles of the markets in Frankfurt and Nuremberg.
Assortment of Soups
It was in the low 40’s when I visited the German Christmas Markets and I needed a few different soups to keep me warm. The traditional Beef Liver Dumpling was a stand-out and worth trying on your trip.
All the Meats
I took a red-eye from New York and arrived in Frankfurt around noon. I checked into my hotel, walked over to the Christmas Market and the first thing I ate was a grilled Frankfurter; it felt appropriate.
All the sausages in Germany were delicious but my favorite were the little Nuremberg Bratwurst. They are served 3 on a roll (sauerkraut optional) and then you can add some mustard. They are the ideal bite and good to have in the middle of the day and again after a few glühweins.
I was told that I must try the Franconian pork shoulder and it didn’t disappoint. For around 12 euros it was a lot of food (and by no means a light dinner.) The shoulder came bone-in and is served with the crispy pork skin and a dense potato dumpling. If you are in Nuremberg or the surrounding area and it’s on the menu, be sure to order it at least once.
Gingerbread so perfectly spiced I needed to eat it twice (or 3 times or 5 times. I lost count.) The cakes, cookies, breads, tarts and tortes are all wonderful and it seems like 50% of the vendors in the markets are selling some type of baked goods. Eat a lot of them.
The German Christmas Markets offer a range of traditional and expertly prepared foods. Get ready to eat a range of regional and local dishes that lend themselves so well to the cold winter months and a warm holiday atmosphere.
Categories: Escape from New York: Extended Travel