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German Food Lesson for Kids: Facts & History

Instructor: Angela Burke

Angela has over ten years of teaching experience in Special Education, classroom teaching and GT. She has a master's degree in Special Ed with an emphasis in Gifted.

What foods do people in Germany enjoy eating? In this lesson, find out what bratwurst and schnitzel are. Discover what cake is named after a forest and what popular German festival is held every year.

Spargel, Spaetzle and More

Would you eat a food called spargel? How about braten or spaetzle? Chances are good that you have eaten all of these foods. In Germany, spargel is the vegetable we know as asparagus. Braten is a roast and spaetzle are yummy noodles.

Germany is a country in Western Europe with tasty food that can be heavy and hearty or sweet and sugary. Let's discover more about German food and the history behind it.

A Little History

A long time ago, Germany was made up of smaller territories, or kingdoms. Because of this, today you will find that different foods are celebrated and eaten in different parts of the country. Each region, or area, has its own traditional dishes. Regional cuisine is food made in a certain area of the world based on what ingredients are available, cooking styles and culture.

Because of Germany's rich land and the grazing of cows, sheep and pigs, meat has been an important part of the German diet. A long time ago, meat needed to be salted, smoked or made into sausage to keep it preserved. To this day, these continue to be popular ways of eating meat in Germany.

Bratwurst
Bratwurst

Potatoes are another important food staple with a long history. This might be because of Frederick the Great who ordered the people in his kingdom to grow cucumber and potato plants in the 1700s because they didn't cost a lot of money.

Regions of Germany and Their Foods

Germany has five main areas of regional cuisine. Bavaria is a high mountain region located in the Alps. It is well-known for its soft pretzels and potato dumplings. The Black Forest region is home to Black Forest Ham and Black Forest Cherry Torte, which is a chocolate cake layered with cherries and whipped cream.

Black Forest Cherry Torte
Cherry Black Forest

The Eastern region of Germany is home to the capital city, Berlin. Here you can find dishes made from bratwurst, which is a German sausage that is fried or grilled, as well as schnitzel, a thin slice of meat covered in bread crumbs and fried. Visiting the Western region of Germany, you will discover lush vineyards where wine is made.

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