From Meatballs to Poor Man’s Ragout Fin – DDR Culinary Traditions

It’s been a while since the Berlin Wall fell — but the scent of DDR cuisine still permeates many of Berlin’s kitchens. Many of the city’s inhabitants still base their diets around a large number of these “delicacies”. During the DDR’s 40 years of existence, and despite large regional differences and preferences within the country, a distinctive DDR cuisine emerged. Anyone preparing a Jägerschnitzel á la DDR today will probably spend some time scratching their head (in vain) as they search through the recipe for the mushrooms that would normally make up much of the sauce. The names of DDR specialities were often identical to the names used for dishes in the West, although the food that ended up on a diner’s plate was rarely the same. Even today, most of the inhabitants in former East German regions refer to chicken from street grills as Broilers, a term foreign to most West Germans.

zettberlin -

image courtesy of zettberlin /

Continue reading