12 tastes of a Christmas market

12 tastes of a Christmas market

by Karen Bradbury
Stripes Europe

For many, the thrill of a Christmas market isn’t found in all the little trinkets you can pick up, but the experience of living in the moment: The twinkling, shimmering lights, the sweet and savory smells, and the bracing feel of cold against your face. The choices of what to consume while there can be overwhelming. Here are 12 things worth giving a go:

Hearty Fare

1) Kartoffelpuffer (or Reibekuchen): Potato pancakes taste best while still hot; they’re served with a side of applesauce (Apfelmus), garlic sauce (Knoblauchsauce), or smoked salmon and horseradish.

2) Raclette: The Christmas market adaptation of this classic ski resort dish is often a serving of cheese smeared atop a slice of bread, topped with cranberries, ham or roasted onions. 

3) Wildgulasch: This stick-to-the-ribs dish is typically made with deer or wild boar meat, slow-cooked in red wine and bouillon and flavored with onion and tomato paste.

4) Flammlachs: A side of salmon affixed to a wooden plank is smoked and roasted by glowing beechwood coals. 

Hot drinks

5) Winzerglühwein: While typically sweetened and spiced red wine, white wine variations exist too. At some stands, you might find fruity flavors from blackberry to peach.

6) Feuerzangenbowle: A rum-soaked block of sugar is set alight and left to drip into a vat of mulled wine.

7) Eierpunsch: This mix of egg liqueur, sweet white wine, vanilla, powdered sugar, and cinnamon gets its kick from a shot of rum.

8) Glühbier: This fruity beer reminiscent of cherry cough drops, licorice and spice finishes on a sour note. 

Sweet treats

9) Gebrannte Mandeln: Almonds or other nuts are toasted and covered in a crusty coat of sugar and cinnamon; they taste best when consumed warm.  

10) Lebkuchen: Germany’s take on traditional gingerbread appears in countless forms.

11) Kaiserschmarrn: Fluffy shredded pancakes are served with a dusting of confectioner’s sugar and a warm compote of apples, cranberries, plums or other tangy fruit. 

12) Poffertjes: This bite-sized pancake-like treat is recognizable by the hollowed-out shape it takes from the cast-iron pan in which it bakes; it’s typically served with powdered sugar.

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