19 November 2011

Laugenbrötchen: An Ode to Germany

I don't have many regrets, but I really wish I had been an exchange student. When I think about it, it really is very peculiar that I wasn't, because it was always my intention to live in Germany a year. Why Germany? Well, mostly because I love the country. I really do. I love the language. I love the food. I love the people, the cities, the unique cultural traits and yes, even the coffee. But above all, I love German breads. They make 'em there like no other place on earth.

Yes, I have been busy waxing lyrical about German breads, but it can't be said enough. Therefore it's pretty remarkable that I haven't managed to post anything remotely German here on Ferdakost. Especially considering the fact that I actually do make quite a lot of Germanic-themed food at home. But after a year of not posting anything German, I told myself to shape up and get a move on. Thusly, I intended to make something German for 3rd October, but those plans went down the drain. Then came the 9th November, but yet again, it just wasn't done. A third chance was given to me just a few days later, on the 11th, but alas... well, you all know nothing German was posted.

Making a not-so-logical jump, I did a fair bit of a travelling in Deutschland in my youth, and every single time I was there, I would stuff myself with bretzel (pretzels) and laugenbrötchen (pretzel-buns). They were simply irresistible, but it wasn't always my fault. Sometimes the bretzels would literally jump into my mouth. Honest! Wherever I've travelled in Germany – east, west, north, centre (I haven't been to the south just yet...); the landscapes, the people, the dialects, the culture have changed. But bretzels have remained steadfast friends of mine; there when I needed food; there when I desired them. Usually I eat 'em plain – except during Christmas. 'My' Opa in Hamburg taught me to eat laugenbrötchen with a gingerbread biscuit squeezed in the middle, and I promise you it's good! I know it sounds bizarre, but it's really is!

Laugenbrötchen and I have had a slightly odd relationship over the years. My early attempts were not great. At one point I gave up. I mean, I must have tried ten or twelve different recipes, but none of them worked. A year or two later – long after I decided to never try a laugenbrötchen recipe again – I found this recipe. And I struck gold! To paraphrase Thomas Edison ''I didn't fail. I just found 1000 ways how not to make laugenbrötchen!'' So perhaps it doesn't matter that I didn't go to Germany after all. After all, I have everything I need right here: a laugenbrötchen in the one hand, a cup of coffee in the other. And if I was in Germany right now, I imagine I'd eat a lot of these.

I am submitting my laugenbrötchen to Yeastspotting and this week's host Hefe und mehr.

Recipe by Just Lovin' Cooking

500 g. flour
25 g. fresh yeast
1 tsp. sugar
30 g. butter, cubed
270 ml. tepid water
1 tsp. salt
2 litres water

12 tsp. baking soda

4 tbsp. salt

1.In a bowl, mix the yeast with the tepid water and sugar. Add the flour, knead well, and add the butter. Knead until you're left with a firm and homogenous dough, before adding the 1 tsp. salt. Let the dough rise for 30-45 minutes.

2.Divide and shape the dough into 15 small balls à 50 g. Let rise until doubled.
Preheat oven to 210 C.

3.In a large pot, mix the 2 litres of water with the baking soda and 4 tbsp. salt. Allow the mixture to cook, then add the balls of dough, one by one, leaving each in the solution for about 30 seconds.

4.Place each ball onto a baking sheet lined with baking paper. Cut a cross on each ball, and sprinkle with coarse sea salt or sesame seeds. Place baking sheets in oven for about 20 minutes, or until the breads are golden.

10 comment (s):

Mor said...

It's as good as it looks! Nice pictures :-)

Marion said...

Tusen takk!

lapetitecuisine said...

Hi Marion, these are sweet! Very nice pictures you did and lovely post! I will defintely give this recipes a try. Cheers Susanne

Marion said...

Danke :)

Stefanie said...

To eat a Laugenbrötchen with a ginger cookie is new to me, I prefer the more traditional way of eating them plainly with butter. :-D
Your Laugenbrötchen look very good!

Marion said...

Perhaps it's just a Hamburg thing :) Thanks!

Tabea said...

It definitely is just a Hamburg thing ;)
I prefer eating it with Gelbwurst. Something you only have in Bavaria actually.

Marion said...

:) Hm... I should try it - if I make it to Bayern one day! :)

Baerbel said...

Wrong Tabea! Gelbwurst is also im "Schwabenlaendle"

Ute Peterson said...

Huh Baerbel..that's what I thought, Baden-Wuertemberg has Gelbwurst too..trYing the laugenbrotchen today! !!

Post a Comment

Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket