The Austrian Alps have been a travel destination for me and my family for as long as I can remember. And much earlier still; going through old family-photo albums, I found evidence of my tiny little self staying in Tiroler midsts before I reached a full 6 months of age. And somehow I never grew tired of going back, of reliving an authentic Austrian vacation. Yes let’s stress the authenticity! Be warned, the genuine Austrian experience is not to be taken lightly, especially on the stomach. But if you’re up for a challenge and a few extra pounds round the waist, you’ll find that Austria’s way to your heart is through your stomach.
Only for sturdy, hefty outdoor folk I put together a day’s diet ; eat that up, it’s good for you!
The anti-climax of the Austian kitchen. “Semmeln und Schinkenspeck” might sound very Austrian, it’s actually nothing more than breadrolls and smoked bacon. Throw in a couple of eggs from the local farmer and you’ve got yourself a petty continental breakfast.
Moreover, to my humble opinion for Austrian baker men, baking breads is definitely not their strong suit. So if you’re tempted to order ‘Brettljause’ with some slices of ‘Pinzgauer Brotlaibe’ or ‘Schwarzbrot’, you better have a stomach that has the superpower-ability to digest sourdough bricks with a pinch of yeast. No offense my dear Alpinians, I prefer my bread to be a bit more airy.
So let’s get to the ‘Snork-approved’ breakfast. If on a winter’s morning I strongly recommend filling up on the Austian soul cake: sachertorte.
On any other morning my suggestion would be the one and only bun with Pretzelbodylogic or ‘dinkel Laugenstange’ with a dip of Hüttenkäse, the Austian ‘Tzatziki’.
And next to my coffee tub, I’ll have a glass of ‘Johanissbeeresaft’ (black currant juice) instead of the classic glass of orange juice.
♠ Lunch TIME
Knodl-mania out on the Alpin Slopes! Get your Germknödel; a fluffy yeast dough dumpling, filled with spiced plum jam and served with melted butter or on request with vanilla cream sauce instead and topped off with a mix of poppy seeds and sugar. Afterwards you can have yourself a contest with your fellow travel companions, on who got the most poppy seeds stuck between their teeth.
The kind people from ‘Almdudler’ have dispersed their sunloungers far and wide for you to fully enjoy die AlpenSonne at noontime. The least you could do is have a bottle of their herbal lemonade.
♠ Afternoon Scooby snacks
Undoubtedly you planned a shit ton of exhilarating rushes to get you through your day up in Austrian heights. So You Bet Your Life your energy meters will be running low in no time. Time to reload your batteries with some delicious pancakes. Not any plain, humdrum, dim-witted pancakes. No, those crafty Austrians serve a Machiavellian version of the delicacy; ‘Kaiserschmarrn’. Almost needless to say, that goes with a couple of GLUHWEINS, hot red wine with a touch of cinnamon.
♠ Dinner Time
For the famished and emaciated, for the gluttonous with unquenchable cravings, your prayers have been heard and are about to be fulfilled. Let’s scooch at the dinner table.
◊ For starters I recommend the FRITATENSUPPE. Remember those humdrum, dim-witted pancakes I mentioned earlier? Yes? That’s them floating around in your bowl of broth.
◊For all you carnivores out there, you’re in for a treat! If you’re (wo)man enough to take on a challenge; order the ‘RIESERWIENERSCHNITZEL’ or Giant Schnitzel, with a capital G that is! If only for the fact that no other place in the entire world makes Schnitzels like they do in Austria, you could also knock out an entire herd of mountain bovines with it.
◊ For all the cow(ard)s amongst you, Tiroler Gröstl is an excellent alternative. Traditionally, a way of using up yesterday’s left-overs, it still makes a delicous shared-from-the-pan belly-filler. This bacon, onion and potato fry-up tastes great served with a fried egg.
◊ Since I won’t have anyone left discriminated, for all you vegetable-loving herb- and omnivores, Austria has an anything but inferior vegetarian dish; the KÄSESPÄTZLE or Pinzgauer Kasnocken. Small silky dumplings, drowning in an excess of molted local cheese, preferably served in a cast-iron pan.
Let’s not forget our Suds and Soda’s! If you can’t cure what ails you with the extensive range of local beers, most natives or ‘EINHEIMISCHEN’ have some Monkberry moon delight lingering around resembling ‘SCHNAPPS’.
I always end my day exactly how I started it; with Coffees for Closers. Want to punch things up a bit? Pour in some ‘HEISSE WITWE’, a plum based liquor that roughly translates into ‘hot widow’. And to appease that last sweet tooth, top it off with a dainty MOZARTKUGEL on the side.
I might have lost my heart to the Austrian kitchen, my sister actually lost her heart to Salzburgerland. And as many times as I wished she hadn’t … as many times I envied her to have found inner peace there amongst the mountains. And obviously I’m thankful for the dried Austrian meals and cartons of ‘Johanissbeere saft’ she brings home, everytime she visits us.