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 Post subject: German-Russian vs. German vs. Ukrainian foods
PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2011 5:16 am 
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Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 9:13 pm
Posts: 38
I've often wondered about this. Most of the foods that I grew up with and called "German" - strudel (not the sweet kind), kuchen, knepfla, käse knepfla - are foods that I have never (or rarely at least) seen in Germany.

I've never seen them serve strudel there. I've only found Knoepfle in one place (Freiburg im Breisgau) though, of course, it's similar to Spaetzle, which is everywhere. I've maybe seen our version of kuchen once or twice (again in Frieburg), the kind with fruit and custard. Though German kuchen (i.e. typical cake) is everywhere.

At the same time, I DID have strudel in Ukraine, in a village just down the road from Hoffnungstal, Bessarabia. And I've seen Käse Knepfla there too (though they had a different name).

So - my theory is that our German-Russian foods are actually much more heavily influenced by our ancestors' 150 years in Ukraine than all their ethnic German heritage before that.

Anyone else? Have I just missed these foods in Germany? Thoughts?


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 Post subject: Re: German-Russian vs. German vs. Ukrainian foods
PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2011 12:13 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 10:52 am
Posts: 151
I would go with a Ukraine food heritage rather than a German one. I had never seen spaetzle until I attended a GRHS convention. Holopchi and perogies were more my families style... but then I grew up in Winnipeg and there is a HUGE Ukrainian population and tradition in Winnipeg.

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Gauer Family Website


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 Post subject: Re: German-Russian vs. German vs. Ukrainian foods
PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2011 8:12 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 9:13 pm
Posts: 38
We never did pierogies (spelling?), but my mom made halupse all the time. And I grew up in Seattle, surrounded by Scandinavians. :-) So my mom brought that recipe from NoDak.


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 Post subject: Re: German-Russian vs. German vs. Ukrainian foods
PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 12:02 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:53 pm
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I think it only makes sense that our ancestors cooked the foods that grew around them, hence the foods passed down to us. I also grew up with Halupsi, Knepfla, Kuchen but also Borscht. I think this really provides evidence that our Germans did not isolate themselves from other peoples in the area.


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 Post subject: Re: German-Russian vs. German vs. Ukrainian foods
PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 8:53 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2011 7:56 am
Posts: 11
I remember when my friends often called German food dull and boring. They'd give a laugh and always mention the basic foods: sauerkraut and sausages. Then I'd say, "You've never eaten my Mom's or my her Mom's [grandma Hein's] cooking." These two women in my life could make the best duck, goose, chicken, yeast dumplings, coffee cakes.... Makes my mouth water just to think about their foods.

Yes, it's true, their cooking was influenced by their surroundings just as it was by the surroundings of all our ancestors wherever they lived.

Since many of my GR ancestors were farmers and bakers, my ancestors have provided me with a huge variety of recipes. For an example, my group of GR's from the Alsace were rubbing elbows with the French, who loved their heavier creams and wine which turn reduced gravy into sauces. My grandma Hein carried these marvelous sauces to the US... We refer to her sauces as "gravy" but gravy as most people know as gravy wasn't grandma Hein's gravy. The liquid fat didn't puddle on the surface as it sat in the bowl on the table as we ate.

The coffee cakes were from the best finely ground white flour. Her "sponge", the starter used before yeast came in packages, was always in progress [added and taken].

In Borodino, Bessarbia [Moldavia] when grandma Hein was a child, the GR's didn't grow their own vegetables. This surprised me when I first heard this fact. The Bulgarians were the vegetable farmers and came into the villages with carts loaded with the seasonal vegetables and fruits, especially the melons. But I'll save this story for another time.

I've got to go make our morning coffee.....

Talk to you soon.

remmick@aol.com


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 Post subject: Re: German-Russian vs. German vs. Ukrainian foods
PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 7:39 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 9:13 pm
Posts: 38
These stories are making my mouth water! Funny, my mom never made the borscht, but I know it's in all the ND cookbooks that I inherited from her.

ANd it's funny - I think some recipes are universal. Did you all ever have kechla (fried dough) sprinkled with powdered sugar and sometimes cinnamon? My mom sometimes made these for dinner.

Well, I had a GR cousin here in Seattle from Germany. We went somewhere they had elephant ears and he said "Hey, they have kechla!"

Then just a couple weeks ago, I was traveling in the southwest and went to a pueblo...and they were selling "Indian fry bread" - with, you guessed it, sugar and cinnamon!


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 Post subject: Re: German-Russian vs. German vs. Ukrainian foods
PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 3:32 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2011 7:56 am
Posts: 11
One night a long time ago, I made some popcorn, the next day I asked grandma Hein what had thought about our popcorn the first time she had it here in the US. She preceded to tell me that they had popcorn in Borodino. Evidently, someone, who had been in our med-west had taken corn back to Borodino, and she had it and liked it. The difference was that here in the US, the popcorn has became larger....

Remmick


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 Post subject: Re: German-Russian vs. German vs. Ukrainian foods
PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 3:42 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 9:13 pm
Posts: 38
Interesting....


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 Post subject: Re: German-Russian vs. German vs. Ukrainian foods
PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 12:37 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 10:52 am
Posts: 151
My mother often served our family a very simple and cheap dish. We called it "Potato Balls" but it may have another name. It was made from a mixture of mashed potatoes and eggs which was formed into meat ball sized balls and then cooked in boiling water and served with bread crumbs and melted butter and cooked until the crumbs were toasted brown. Between the carbs and the fat certainly not good nutritionally but boy did it taste good! :)

Does anyone have any idea if this is a German-Russian or Ukrainian dish or if it's just one of those depression era ultra inexpensive recipes learned by my parents as they grew up in Canada in the 30's?

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BlackSeaGR Forum co-Administrator
Gauer Family Website


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 Post subject: Re: German-Russian vs. German vs. Ukrainian foods
PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2011 5:37 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2011 9:47 am
Posts: 1
Carolyn wrote:
We never did pierogies (spelling?), but my mom made halupse all the time. And I grew up in Seattle, surrounded by Scandinavians. :-) So my mom brought that recipe from NoDak.


I always was told that pierogies were Polish in origin by some Polish relatives.


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