Archive for Food

Kipferl

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Growing up I was always a big fan of cookies and milk, such a sweet & simple treat that just seems to go together naturally.

My most fond memories are from when I got to help make them from scratch, but there are other times that I just remember going to the hair salon with my Grandma, where her hairdresser always had a tin of Danish butter cookies. My Grandma would sit under the hair dryer and send me over to get her a small cup of black coffee and some cookies. I always skipped the coffee until I got a little older and realized just how delicious a heavily creamed & sweetened cup of coffee could be.

While helping out in the front of the store last week, I happened to look up from where I was cashiering and across from me was our variety of Bahlsen cookie boxes.

Now when I say variety I mean it, there are some that are chocolate coated, dipped, some with crème filling, and others with fruits. There are crispy cookies and soft cookies; Bahlsen seems to have made it their goal to offer something to fulfill every particular cookie craving a person could have.

While I do love the options available, my heart got set on the Kipferl. In the trademark blue Bahlsen box it is a simple and plain looking cookie in the shape of a crescent.  The next morning I grabbed box and a fresh cup of piping hot coffee and took a seat at my desk. Since it was still early it was really nice to sit and enjoy a little peace before preparing for the day.  Just as I had expected the cookies have a delicious slightly buttery taste, and the only real sweetness comes from the light bit of sugar on the outside.

Made with finely chopped bits of hazelnuts it really blows pecan sandies out of the water.  They were moist and delicious and went so well with my coffee; it was just a wonderful treat and a fantastic start to my morning.

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Schweinebauch

Recently we welcomed a new member to our group behind the counter; sometimes trying the products for the blog can serve as a valuable training opportunity.
WP_000326Looking into our deli case with all the new additions from Stiglemeier with our new guy Jason,  the first item to catch our eye is the Schweinebauch, bacon stuffed with beef & pork.  The outer skin of the bacon is chewy while the inside is a bit greasy with a wonderfully mild taste of pork & beef with hint of the onion used in the seasoning. The texture on the inside reminds me of a course bologna.

After a small sample of the Schweinebauch itself I wanted to see how it would be used on a sandwich. Not wanting to make a plain sandwich, Sydney stepped up and went about making a simple and tasty meal for us to try.

Sautéing some peppers & onions, she rolled the veggies into the slice with a light drizzle of Dijon mustard, then grilling the roll for a few minutes before placing it between two slices of our Bierbrot.

The combination was absolutely astounding, I knew it would be a great mix but we were all surprised just how good it was. The schweinebach picked up all the flavors of the onion & red peppers, with the Dijons flavor came across as a more sweet than spicy. The bierbrot rounded it all out with its unique taste.

For added spice we added a side of the Dijon for dipping but it wasn’t really needed. What we did enjoy was the Sweet Red Cabbage that is a familiar side from Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Café; it has a sweet and tangy profile from the Granny Smith Apples used in the recipe.WP_000329

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A Meaty Treat

It’s always exciting when we get new things in the store and last week was no exception. We have been working on making it possible to get in the quality products from Stiglmeier Sausage Co. for some time. At long last we are able to bring in 40 new items to add to our deli case and freezer. Some of them are more familiar and easier to recognize, others…not so much, but that is why I am here writing about all the fantastic food from Germany and other parts of Europe.

Stiglmeier ButchersThe nice thing about Stiglmeier is that like the Hollerbach’s it is a family owned operation. Anton & Gertraud Stiglmeier immigrated to Chicago where in 1960 they started the Stiglmeier Sausage Company, using traditional Bavarian and other German recipes.

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The items I’ve tried today are 3 smoked sausages that can be eaten directly from the display case.

Kilometer- Smoked, Spicy Hungarian Sausage. Not overly spicy, especially at first after a moment there was a very pleasant burn, very tasty. Blows a slim jim out of the water, more moist with a nice pepper taste.

Gyulai- Smoked, Spicy Hungarian Sausage. Spicier than the kilometer, meatier, crunchier skin, densely packed but softer than a pepperoni stick

Debreziner- Mild, Smoked Pork Sausage of German origin. The least spicy but still so full of flavor. It was also slightly more fatty than the other two.

<Stiglmeier information found on http://www.stiglmeier.com/story.aspx

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Tasty Tomato Suppe

Chef Reno has been creating German specials for the weekends over at Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Café. I have been spoiled because he has such great ideas for use of the items we have in the market. Now when I wander the aisles he usually walks with me offering suggestions on what could be made & combined.  Today while wandering, I really wanted something sweet but decided that I would be better off with something a little more substantial. Halfway down the aisle I’m joined by the Chef and the conversation quickly picks up. After about 5 mins we agree that a soup would be perfect for today.

When he brought the finished product to my desk I smelled it before he reached me. The warm scent of tomato and herbs caught my attention first. I did my best not to be distracted while I finished the paperwork before me so that I could focus and enjoy a special soup, which was also difficult because the presentation of the soup was just so fancy.

Once the paper work was finished and moved a safe distance away from the bright red soup, I could really take in the smell. The scent of tomatoes and herbs was so wonderful and rich that I couldn’t discern anything else but the faintest smell of the cheese croutons.  The texture was not watery which I loved, especially since I had been talking about wanting something that was a bit more substantial.  What was a fantastic addition was the cheese croutons he made, lightly crunchy with the Gluten Free Panko Italian style breadcrumbs. Inside was the chewy, gooey goodness of melted provolone cheese.

My mind was reeling with the combined flavors, such a decadent and delicious soup.  After a few minutes the soup was gone and I was left sitting at my desk suffering the usual sadness that accompanies the end of a really good meal. What is wonderful is how Chef Reno wrote everything out so that again I can share the recipe with you.

Ingredients:

1 Can – La Valle Peeled Tomatoes

1 Can- Rega Tomatoes with Basil

1 Clove- Garlic

1 – Onion

1 – Tomato

1 1/2 Tblsp- Bouillon

½ Tsp- Salt

1 Tblsp- Sugar

1 Tsp- Basil (dried)

1 – Egg

1 cup- Flour

½ lbs- Provolone Cheese

1/2 bag- Ian’s Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs, Italian

How he did it:

Cut onions in cubes and sauté in Olive oil.

Then puree with Tomatoes and sugar, basil & garlic. Strain the seeds.

Add ½ cup water & simmer for 10-15mins

Season the soup with bullion and salt

Cheese croutons

Cut cheese in cubes

Bread cheese cubes:  Flour- Egg- Breadcrumbs

Panfry them in Olive oil until light brown color

Once cool enough to handle, add to soup.

In case you would like to re-create the fantastic presentation Chef Reno used in the picture above he lightly drizzled Pesto, and heavy whipping cream to make the design.

The above is exactly what Chef Reno used and it was enough to feed 4 of us with extra cheese croutons to go around!

Now I LOVE fresh tomatoes, so I had to ask how many whole vine ripe tomatoes it would take to make this soup without having to use the canned kind. He said it depends on the size, but 6-8 should be about right to make the same amount.

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