Bread (Brot) is a significant part of German cuisine. In Germany about 600 main types of breads and 1,200 different types of pastries and rolls are produced in about 17,000 dedicated bakeries and another 10,000 in-shop bakeries.In Germany bread is traditionally served for breakfast (often replaced by rolls) and in the evening as (open) sandwiches, but rarely as a side dish for the main meal (popular, for example, with Eintopf or soup). The importance of bread in German cuisine is also illustrated by words such as Abendbrot (meaning supper, literally evening bread) and Brotzeit (snack, literally bread time). In fact, one of the major complaints of the German expatriates in many parts of the world is their inability to find acceptable local breads.
Regarding bread, German cuisine is more varied than that of either Eastern or Western Europe. Most German breads are made with sourdough. Most breads contain both wheat and rye flour (hence Mischbrot, mixed bread), and often also wholemeal and whole seeds such as linseed, sunflower seed, or pumpkin seed (Vollkornbrot). Darker, rye-dominated breads, such as Vollkornbrot or Schwarzbrot, are typical of German cuisine. Pumpernickel, a steamed, sweet-tasting bread, is internationally well known, although not representative of German black bread as a whole. Most German breads are made with sourdough. Whole grain is also preferred for high fiber. Germans use almost all available types of grain for their breads: wheat, rye, barley, spelt, oats and millet.
Our most popular breads, just to name a few, are:
- Rye-wheat (Roggenmischbrot)
- White bread (Weißbrot)
- Whole-grain (Vollkornbrot)
- Wheat-rye (Weizenmischbrot)
- Multigrain, usually wheat-rye-oats with sesame or linseed (Mehrkornbrot)
- King Ludwig (Spelt, rye, wheat flour and malt)
- Berliner (highest content of rye flour, wheat and malt)
- Sunflower seeds in rye bread (Sonnenblumenkernbrot)
- Pumpkin seeds in rye bread (Kürbiskernbrot)
- Roasted onions in light wheat-rye bread (Zwiebelbrot)
Rolls, known in Germany as Brötchen (a diminutive of Brot), Semmel, Schrippe, Rundstück or Weck, Weckle, Weckli, or Wecken, depending on the region, are common in German cuisine. A typical serving is a roll cut in half, and spread with butter or margarine. Cheese, honey, jam, Nutella, meat, fish, or preserves are then placed between the two halves, or on each half separately, known as a belegtes Brötchen.
Rolls are also used for snacks, or as a hotdog-style roll for Bratwurst, Fleischkäse or Schwenker/Schwenkbraten.