German Bread




German Bread

It’s a cultural thing.
Anyone who has traveled to
or lived in Germany knows
German bread to be the best.

Every time I return to the U.S.
after a stay in Germany, I
mourn the loss of German
rolls, pretzels and dark bread.

With over 300 varieties, there
is one to please the most discerning
palate. A hearty slice of crusty bread
is unlike anything to be found at home.


Inquiring, I am told it is in the ovens,
or the flours, or the yeast. But when
I wonder aloud why Americans can’t
duplicate this staple, I get no answers.

Germans love their bread made
fresh daily. I shy away from white
breads in the US which I call Luftbrot
or air bread. No taste, no texture.

Bertolt Brecht during his American exile
in 1941 wrote in his diary: “You can’t
get proper bread in the States.” Trying
to explain to those who have never

traveled to Germany is fruitless.
Soft, tasteless white bread sandwiches
simply cannot compare to German
rye or pumpernickel bread sandwiches.

German bakeries exist around the globe,
but even the imported German breads
do not match the freshly baked varieties
one can purchase in Germany.

My all time favorite would be the
salted pretzels, crispy outside and
soft inside. This German staple
is a cultural thing. Bagels are a poor cousin.


Some of the blog photos are courtesy of a family friend who lives in Cologne, Germany, Arno Bode. His father visited my family in Colorado years ago as he trained engineers on a new piece of German equipment. The wooden bread platter is from my Irish grandmother. She may have been gifted it from a cousin who was stationed in the Army in Germany.



This entry was posted in cultural observations, life in Germany, Brot, Bertolt Brecht and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to German Bread

  1. Annika Perry says:

    A wonderful tribute to such tasty breads. I agree, I loved going into the bakeries in Germany, delightful scent of freshly made breads, such a vast range and all delicious. Your photos are a feast for our eyes and I so long for some brotchen. Why can’t we replicate even to some extent these breads here?? Then there are the amazing pastries and cakes of course….another post?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh my, the cakes and pastries – only the Germans can make such tasty cheesecake. You and I are on the same page with the Broetchen too. I had help with some of the photos. So in the UK, you can’t get such good bread either? I know I was there years ago while a student in Germany. I don’t think we can make tea like the British either. All cultural concepts? Thank you for your comment, Annika. Much appreciated.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Arno Bode,cologne,Germany says:

    Liebe Mary Ann,ich bin begeistert wie Du wieder einmal für uns ganz alltägliche Dinge in einem besonderen Licht darstellst.Ein wirklich brillianter Beitrag.”Brot”, eigentlich in einigen Teilen der Welt Grundlage der Ernährung kann aber auch wie Du es so bildhaft dargestellt hast in die Kateorie 2 etwas für Feinschmecker ” eingegliedert werden.Bei einer so ansprechen Darstellung kann einem schön fast das Wasser im Munde zusammen gibt eine italienische Variante ,die ich seit einiger Zeit schätzen gelert habe: Knackiges Weisbrot geröstet,mit kaltgepresstem Olivenoel bestichen ,belegt mit Tomaten und Basilikum.Man kann je nach geschmacksrichting ,das Brot auch noch mit einer Knoblauchzehe bestreichen. Bleibt nur noch zu sagen.Guten Appetit und “Wohl Bekomme es”
    Liebe Grüße Dein Arno

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for your comment, Arno, and for some of the photos. I could almost reach out and eat the salted pretzels, one of my favorites. You have captured the essence of bread very well yourself. It sometimes does make “your mouth water” as you described it. I love the crisp crust on bread and at some Italian restaurants locally, bread is served with the seasoned olive oil which is probably healthier than butter. I love the combination of basil and tomatoes especially when it comes directly from our garden. Again thank you and Guten Appetit!


  3. Oh, do these look fantastic! And I do love good breads. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Tom says:

    Those pretzels look delicious. I could go for one right now!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ooh, German bread-the absolute best…and only surpassed by the afternoon cake and coffee custom of which I am so very fond. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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