Yes, in fact, they did. The grade conferencing for first semester ended today, and a highly-nutritious cruciferous green vegetable is in season; do you need a better reason to celebrate?
Tonight was the faculty Kohlessen (literally “cabbage eating”), and the Kohl in question is Grünkohl, kale. Kale is not ready to harvest and eat until after the first frost, making it the obvious choice for your wintertime cabbage needs. You can buy kale here frozen in blocks like spinach in the US, or frozen in giant bags with the entire leaves intact. The Kohlessen itself is a tradition in northern Germany, and consists simply of people getting together and eating family-style piles of kale, sausage and potatoes. If you don’t want to cook it yourself, you can try this meal with all of the parts in one bowl at the Christmas markets, or you can go to a Kohlessen. Any group to which you belong, such as church choir, bridge club, soccer team or high school faculty, will probably host a Kohlessen. Believe me; you want to go.
Tonight’s Kohlessen was held at the lovely Everding Gaststätte, a restaurant right around the corner from my place. The menu was kale, browned potatoes, and a variety of pork products:
- Mettwurst – coarse-grained sausage; reminds me of kielbasa
- Pinkel – pork sausage with oatmeal
- Bratwurst – bratwurst
- Kassler – smoked pork chops
- Speck – pork belly
I washed the whole thing down with two Herforder pilsners and a pear schnapps called an Obstler, by Williams-Christ. It was a good night.