Black lives matter protests against racism
Non Recipes, Politics

Anti-racism gone wrong

Yes, we have problems with racism and racial inequality all over the world. Yet, fighting racism with prejudices and by trying to segregate society is no solution to the problem. I was quite surprised when I saw that the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture had published a chart about “white traits”. It lists traits typical for the “white culture” of America. Of course, the idea to create such a chart was […]

Rice with Meat
Pork, Rice, Stews

Rice with Meat (‘Reisfleisch’)

Rice with meat is a traditional home-cooking dish that only requires one pot. It’s usually prepared with fatty pork and super delicious. It’s said that Austrian people first learned about this dish from the Balkan countries. Rice with meat is basically a goulash to which you add rice. The rice then soaks up all the delicious sauce and becomes super flavorful. Instead of pork, this dish can also be prepared with beef or chicken even […]

Malaysia pepper plantation
Cooking History, Cooking Knowledge, Non Recipes

Let’s talk about pepper – Part 3: Indonesia and Malaysia

Few countries in this world can match the beautiful landscapes of Indonesia. The largest Muslim state of the world consists of 17 508 islands that contain 147 volcanoes. But you will not just encounter picturesque beaches, Komodo dragons, volcanoes, and coral reefs there. The former Dutch colony is also a major pepper producer. The Indonesian islands were the first ones in history to surpass India as the world’s leading pepper producers. Indonesia might not be […]

covid 19 pandemic
Economics, Non Recipes, Politics

How big corporations and the government use COVID-19 to their advantage

The Covid-19 pandemic has once again shown that, despite all the tragedy involved with people losing their lives, events like these are shamelessly exploited by big cooperations as well as the government. In the end, a great majority of the population will not only lose financial assets but also personal freedoms and human rights. Yet, huge cooperations will be the big winners of this crisis which allows them to strengthen their market position to attain […]

Swabian Pretzels
Baked, Basics, Bread, Swabian, Vegetarian

Swabian Pretzels (‘Schwäbische Laugenbrezeln’)

The pretzel is a national sanctuary of Swabia. There is no other type of bread that better resembles Southern German baking culture. Baking Swabian pretzels is a labor of love. They’re a bit more challenging to make than Bavarian pretzels. However, you will be rewarded with a much better product. It’s a shame that Swabian pretzels are so hard to find outside of Swabia. The Bavarian-style is easier to automatize with a machine which is […]

Cooking History, Cooking Knowledge, Non Recipes

Let’s talk about pepper – Part 2: India

Welcome back to my series about pepper, the king of spices. Last week I have introduced you to pepper grown in Cambodia and Vietnam. But it was neither Cambodia nor Vietnam where Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama sailed with his ship on his legendary journey to change world history forever. Six years after Christopher Columbus had failed to reach the Malabar coast of India in 1492, Vasco da Gama arrived in Calicut, India, in 1498. […]

Buckwheat Pancakes

Buckwheat Pancakes with Apple Jelly (‘Rötsch mit Apfelkraut’)

Surprise, surprise. It’s the Germans who make the best buckwheat pancakes. At least in my humble opinion. I know that the French like to fancy themselves for their buckwheat crêpes but they often miss the secret ingredient to great buckwheat pancakes: coffee. Yes, it might sound obscure at first. You certainly wouldn’t put coffee into regular pancakes. But in buckwheat pancakes, coffee is magic. This is a traditional recipe from the Bergisches Land in North-Rine-Westphalia […]

Mixed Peppercorns
Cooking History, Cooking Knowledge, Non Recipes

Let’s talk about pepper – Part 1: Cambodia and Vietnam

Germans are among the biggest pepper consumers in Europe. In 2017, the average German ate 205 grams of pepper. That’s much more than our French neighbors where one person on average only consumes 75 grams of pepper a year. The average European eats 120 grams of pepper a year. Yet despite our high consumption levels, most Germans don’t have much knowledge about pepper. They neither know how it is grown and produced nor how to […]

Kärntner Nudeln
Dumplings, Noodles, Potatoes, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Carinthian Cheese Noodles (‘Kärntner Nudeln’)

Carinthia is the southernmost Austrian state and home to a unique kind of dumpling: the Carinthian cheese noodle. It’s a vegetarian dumpling that is said to be closely related to the Italian ravioli. While a Swabian would never ever think of pleating his soup dumplings (‘Maultaschen’), it’s the trademark of the Carinthian cheese noodle. In the past, it was unthinkable for Swabians to eat vegetarian dumplings. They were originally invented to hide the meat from […]

Sourdough Starter
Bread, Cooking Knowledge, Non Recipes

What is sourdough? An in-depth guide to sourdough technology for bakers

Sourdough is a fermented mixture of wheat, spelt, or rye flour and water. Sometimes it might also include salt. It is obtained by spontaneous fermentation with environmental lactic acid bacteria and yeasts which make sourdough acidic and give it the ability to leaven bread. To keep sourdough active and in optimum condition, it needs to be refreshed consecutively. That’s the scientific definition of what sourdough actually is. If you’re an experienced baker then I’m sure […]