I am German in addition to some other nationalities. Since I have German relatives I have gotten a bit more taste of German cuisine than the average person. I can say Germans know how to party and how to eat. The following are some Christmas favorites that are served in German communities around the world.
The first thing about a Christmas dinner in Germany that will strike an American is that instead of turkey they eat goose. This is prepared very similar to the way you would a turkey. You need to fold the wings on a goose though for cooking. You also have to turn it during cooking at least once. You would take the goose and stuff it like a turkey although the German way is with apples in the stuffing. I am sure that is done with turkey but I have never used it. You will usually cook a 10-12lb goose for about five to six hours at 350 degrees. Just so you are aware goose meat has a much higher fat content than turkey or chicken. The taste is not bad. You can tell it’s defiantly not turkey. I would not say it tastes like chicken though, but many people do say that. I usually end up eating this one every few years for Christmas dinner. Personally I like turkey much better.
In addition to the stuffing you also will need a good side dish or dishes. May German Christmas dinners have potato salad which is a very popular dish. In my family we often have Kroketten as a side dish. Kroketten is basically mashed potatoes that are breaded and then deep fried. They are almost always rolled like a mozzarella stick as opposed to being shaped into balls. Since I am sure many people have never heard of this dish I will provide a recipe. I actually really like Kroketten and have them several times a year. Pretty much anytime we have leftover mashed potatoes. Here is the recipe
Things you will need
1 One and a half pounds of mashed potatoes
2 ½ cup of bread crumbs
3 1 tablespoon of grated parmesan cheese
4 salt and pepper to taste
5 four large eggs separating the yolk and the white part.
6 two tablespoons of flour.
The first thing you do is mix the mashed potatoes, half of the bread crumbs, parmesan cheese. The batter should be reasonably thick. You shape it about the size of a finger than then dip it into the egg whites. From there you bread them in the remaining bread crumbs and flour. After the breading you will cook them in a skillet filled with hot cooking oil. I usually cook a med for about three to four minutes per side. These are delicious and I hope you enjoy.
And what meal would be complete without some dessert? Most people have eaten fruitcake. The Germans make Dresdner Stollen and have since the 1400’s. It is basically the same thing. To be complete it needs to have rum in it. You can’t get drunk from eating the cake so I have never heard of any issues with children eating it, but I would not feed it to a very young child. I actually like this and have it every year for Christmas. The only major difference with this and the usual fruitcake that you find in the United States is that raisins are in Dresdner Stollen and it always has a good dusting of powdered sugar.
Those are some of my family favorites for authentic German Christmas foods. I hope you like them. Have a happy and safe holiday.