Author: Tina

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MEET YOUR NEW FAVORITE BAVARIAN SNACK: A CREAMY CHEESE DIP CONTAINING BEER! (Vegan version included)

Fun fact: Once I was four years old, my mama told me, go learn how to pour beer or you’ll be lonely. Granted, the conversation didn’t go precisely like that, but I did learn how to pour a cold one around that age and so did many of my childhood friends. That’s how you can tell I grew up in small-town Bavaria. Beer is not simply a beverage there – it’s a way of life. So, it’s not surprising that there are oodles of dishes that contain the alcoholic drink. Here’s my favorite: a Bavarian delicacy, served at beergardens and...

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NINE EASY STEPS TO SAVE MONEY WHEN HEATING YOUR GERMAN HOME

Winter is coming. I’ve never watched a single episode of Star Wars, but I’ve been seeing the quote bob around the internet, so I thought I’d join the cool cats and kittens and use it anyway. Kidding! Obviously, I know it’s from Frozen. Or was it Ice Age? Oh well, just let it go, because no matter who said it first, winter IS coming, although it has never really left Germany this year in the first place. Just like those new neighbors who seemed pleasant at first, so you invited them over for dinner, and realized that they’re actually slightly...

WHAT THE HONK? GERMAN WEEKEND CAR PROCESSIONS EXPLAINED!

Chances are if you’re living in Germany, you’ve lucked into a neighbor who has at least once grumbled at someone who was disturbing quiet hours. And that someone might have been you. Don’t stress. I’m not judging – we’ve all been there. Maybe you were drilling on a Sunday. Or mowing the lawn at 12.30. Perhaps you’re a noodle and were having a karaoke party till 4.31 am on a weeknight – in that case: bleep you! All of the above can cause your neighbors to complain. However, feel free to smooth along the streets in a procession of cars,...

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TASTE THE 50s BY MAKING THIS QUICK AND DELISH GERMAN DINNER

Picture the most stereotypical German meal you can think of. Is it Schnitzel? Schweinbraten? Bratwurst with Sauerkraut? Yes, they’re all very German – but there’s another dish that often falls between the cracks. I mean, you might quite literally find crumbs of this in-between people’s couch cushions. It’s a meal that you’ve likely never heard of before, and that most places no longer serve these days. Nevertheless, it’s very authentic and a key part of our cultural history. The mouthwatering concoction consisting of ham and pineapple baked cheese toast has been a German dinner staple since the 1950s. It was...

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HERE’S WHAT’S OPEN AND CLOSED ON SUNDAYS IN GERMANY

“Let’s get a new *insertitemthatjustbroke* tomorrow.” – “No.” “Why not?” – “Think about it.” This is probably the most frequent conversation I’ve had with my husband on Saturdays over the past seven years while living in Germany. If you’re not in the country yet, I hate to break it to you, but German stores are closed on Sundays. To make your weekly shopping trip even more convenient, they also don’t stay open late at night during the week. Granted, this mainly applies to southern Germany – rules are a little less strict in the north, but still, be prepared for...

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GERMAN TAP WATER IS STELLAR! FIND OUT WHAT ELSE YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT IT!

Every once in a while, I see some articles floating around – mainly on Buzzfeed and the like – claiming that Germans don’t drink tap water because it’s viewed as “toilet water”. This couldn’t be farther from the truth! We love our tap water, we boast about its excellent quality, and a boatload of people, including me, don’t even drink anything else! Except for beer – obviously. I mean, we’re still in Germany, after all. But there’s more to German toilet wa… uhm – tap water, than just its good quality. Read on to learn about water hardness, and what...

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FORGET ABOUT OKTOBERFEST – VISIT THIS BAVARIAN BEER CELEBRATION INSTEAD!

Other places have lovers’ lanes – Oktoberfest has hurl hill: a mound to make out, retch and keel over – all in one spot, accompanied by fellow thrower uppers. What is more, die Wiesn, as the natives call Oktoberfest, features unwarranted prices, massive crowds, and dreadfully long waits – it’s like Disneyland’s plastered, little brother. But fret not! Only 2.5 hours north of Munich, you can have a slightly more modest, less packed, and more authentic beer fest experience, that’ll still leave you reminiscing unendingly. If you decide to drive there, make sure to read my Six Facts You Wish...

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DISCOVER ONE OF GERMANY’S BEST KEPT SECRETS: THE WORLD’S TALLEST ARTIFICIAL SANDHILL

Let me guess the number one experience on your bucket list: being perched on a boat that gets pulled up a colossal dune, then slapping on a pair of skis and cannonballing back down in sizzling 30 degrees C/86 degrees F, before high diving into a pool to cool off. Did I get it right? No? Well… let’s rehash it after you’re done reading this article. It sounds like the plot of one of those dippy dreams everyone experiences from time to time – the ones that combine random occurrences which happened throughout the day. But is it? Enter Hirschau,...

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GERMAN PHONE NUMBERS YOU SHOULD KNOW IN CASE OF AN EMERGENCY

One of the most important things to know for any country you visit or move to is how to say “Can I use your restrooms?” in the native language – closely followed by emergency phone numbers. So, without further ado: here’s a list of the most important German phone numbers you should know. Learn them by heart, put them in your phone, download and print the list on the bottom and stick it to your fridge. Nevertheless, avoid having to use these numbers in the first place. One way is to stay safe around yellowjackets, which can be a problem...

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HOW TO MAKE AUTHENTIC BAVARIAN SAUERKRAUT AT HOME

When my husband and I met, he wanted to impress me by trying out some German foods. He headed to Kroger, scored a package of German Sauerkraut, popped it in the microwave, and… hated it. Maybe he should have tried Currywurst or German strawberry tart instead. A few months later, we went to visit my parents and my mom prepared Bratwürste with – surprise –  Sauerkraut! After finding out about dinner, he dreaded the moment he’d have to try again and was stunned when hers tasted nothing like what he had concocted. While the dish is by no means hard...