Germany might be best known for its beer and sausage, but any foodie will tell you that German cuisine is as diverse as its landscape. If you ever get a chance to visit this alpine country, here are five foods you’ll want to be sure to try.

 

  1. Sauerbraten

Named one of Germany’s national dishes, this hearty roast beef stew can take days to make. It involves marinating beef in white wine vinegar and spices until you get delicately tender meat. Traditionally served with red cabbage and potato dumplings, it’s a meal that’s sure to fill your stomach and give you enough energy to keep exploring.

 

  1. Weisswurst

You’ve probably eaten, or at least heard of, bratwurst—Germany’s famous grilled sausage. However, you won’t want to miss taking a bite out of a weisswurst. Parsley, lemon, ginger, onions, and cardamom give this sausage a real kick. It’s made from veal, pork, and back bacon. Enjoy it with a pretzel and your favorite mustard.

 

  1. Spargel

White asparagus, often referred to a “white gold” at Germany’s roadside stands, is celebrated and enjoyed on a daily basis during spargelzeit, the season of the asparagus. If you happen to be traveling in Germany from mid-April to mid-June, be sure to order some spargel, however you may like it—covered in hollandaise sauce, fried in butter, wrapped in bacon, or loaded atop crispy schnitzel.

 

  1. Reibekuchen

For a sweet side dish or a quick snack, there’s nothing better than the classic comfort food reibekuchen. You might never have heard it called by this name (it has 40 different names, after all), but you’ve probably seen it. It’s a fried potato pancake usually served with applesauce on rye bread with a touch of syrup. Look for it all year, but especially during the Christmas season.

 

  1. Schwarzwälder kirschtorte

I hope you saved room for dessert! This delicious treat is difficult to pronounce, but easy to eat. Schwarzwälder kirschtorte, or Black Forest gateau, is one of the most popular cakes in Germany. And why wouldn’t it be? It’s made with layers of chocolate sponge cake, whipped cream, sour cherries, and kirsch liquor. Yum!

 

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