Germans love their bread. And for good reason. It’s baked fresh daily. There’s an endless choice. I had no idea there were so many names for buns and rolls until I moved to Germany. Bread is available everywhere, almost anytime. While most stores are closed on Sundays, bakeries are often open on Sunday mornings. When I asked my German husband (J.P.) why, he looked at me as if I had asked Why does a car need gasoline? Because, he replied, we HAVE to have our bread. Couldn’t you just buy extra on Saturday and eat that? I inquired. Yeah…..but nobody wants to eat day old bread. It was rather obvious to him, but not so much to someone who doesn’t come from a carb obsessed culture.
I guess that explained his horrified expression when he came to Canada and I showed him all the bread in the supermarket. All of it in bags, and let alone a day or two old, probably weeks old!
Despite being single for a long time, J.P. never learned to cook. I found this perplexing. But what did you eat for dinner until I came along? Brotzeit, came the reply. Translated directly it means bread time. In reality, it’s a bun or a roll, spread with some jam, and perhaps some cheese or chocolate shavings. In Germany that passes as a more than acceptable dinner.
So given the loved of bread, that’s why I was so surprised to see what appeared to be severely lacking. I couldn’t help but scratch my head and ask: Where’s the bread?
Meat on a stick with a very small bun at the Esslingen Christmas Market
A schnitzel sandwich at Oktoberfest.
In Canada, it’s usually the opposite. The bun is huge and then there’s a tiny little piece of meat inside.