Germany

Germany is in Western and Central Europe and is the most populous European Union state, with about 82 million inhabitants. Its capital and largest city is Berlin, which incidentally has more bridges than Venice and is home to Europe’s largest inland water network. It also boasts Zoologischer Garten, the largest zoo in the world. Most of Germany has a temperate seasonal climate dominated by humid westerly winds. Winters are cool and summers tend to be warm.

Germany has the world’s fourth largest economy by GDP and so has a very high standard of living.  As a global leader in several industrial and technological sectors, it is both the world’s third largest exporter and importer of goods.

Germany is the seventh most visited country in the world, with over 30 million international tourists annually. More than 30% of Germans spend their holiday in their own country, with the biggest share going to Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in the north, where you will find a unique mixture of nature, culture and urban flair in towns varying from centuries-old tradition to innovative modernity.

German restaurants have become the world’s second most decorated after France. The Michelin Guide of 2015 awarded eleven restaurants in Germany three stars. German cuisine has evolved as a national cuisine through centuries of social and political change with variations from region to region. There are more than 1,500 different types of sausage. Popular dishes include Sauerkraut (fermented shredded cabbage), Sauerbraten (beef pot roast usually served with dumplings), Wurst (white sausage), Spätzle (German noodles), Kartoffelsalat (potato salad), Königsberger Klopse (meatballs in white sauce) and Semmelknödel (dumplings made with breadcrumbs). I opted to make Rhabarberkuchen (German rhubarb cake) which was delicious with a little drizzle of double cream!

Rating: 9/10

Serves: 10 slices
Prep time: 30 minutes + 2 hours chilling time
Cook time: 40 minutes

For the pastry
200g flour
100g unsalted butter
5 tbsp sugar
1 egg

For the filling
6-7 stalks rhubarb (500g)
3 egg yolks
100g caster sugar
125g ground almonds
3 egg whites
Icing sugar for dusting

Crumble the butter into the flour and sugar with your fingers until they have breadcrumb consistency
Add egg and work into a ball and knead on a lightly floured surface for a couple minutes until smooth
Wrap in foil or clingfilm and refrigerate for at least 2 hours
Preheat the oven to 190°C
Wash rhubarb, and cut into 1/2 in (1-2 cm) pieces
Grease a 9″” springform baking tin with butter
Roll out the dough into a large circle and line the pan with it, pressing the dough up the sides. If it falls apart in some parts, just press it in. Prick the pastry with a fork
Separate the egg yolks and egg whites into separate bowls. Beat the egg yolks with half of the sugar (50g or about 1/4 cup) until creamy. Gently mix in the ground almonds.
In a the other bowl, beat the egg whites until it forms stiff peaks like a meringue and then quickly beat in the rest of the sugar
Gently fold in the egg yolk and almond mixture
Put the rhubarb into the springform pan evenly accross the pastry
Pour over the egg mixture and even off the surface. Push down the sides of the dough if it’s too high up the pan.
Bake for 40 minutes. Remove, and let cool for 10 minutes in the pan before removing from the cake tin
Once completely cooled, sprinkle with icing sugar and enjoy with cream

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Ingredients for Rhabarberkuchen (German rhubarb cake)
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Pastry for Rhabarberkuchen (German rhubarb cake)
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Rhabarberkuchen (German rhubarb cake)
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Rhabarberkuchen (German rhubarb cake)
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Rhabarberkuchen (German rhubarb cake)
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Rhabarberkuchen (German rhubarb cake)
schwerin-castle-mecklenburg-vorpommer
Schwerin Castle, Mecklenburg-Vorpommer
berlin-waterway
Berlin waterway
brandenburg-gate-berlin
Brandenburg Gate, Berlin
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