So, where were we?
In Part 1, I regaled you all with the wonderment and magic that is the German Christmas Market. Now, I want to discuss an important topic, one that is close to your heart if you live in the Rheinland Palatinate...
That's right - the both feared and revered dish that is the very definition of all things Pfälzig. That which Helmut Kohl served to every visiting dignitary he could think of, not as a way to test their stomachs, but to show off something that he thought was the greatest thing in all of Germany.
I agree with him. Yet again, this is something that had humble beginnings as poor-man's fare and is now made with the finest ingredients possible. There's even a World Championship for saumagen.
You may be asking yourself "what does this have to do with Christmas and/or New Year's Eve?
Well...nothing. Does it matter?
Anyway, on the advice of a good friend, Anna and I traveled to a tiny village of Harthausen in the Palatinate to get what is regularly considered as the best saumagen in all of Germany. This is where Helmut Kohl (allegedly) got his to serve to Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher so I assume that it is good enough for us.
That place is Metzgerei Schreiner.
A rather unassuming place. I can assure you though, the meaty delights inside makes the trek worth the time.
There are essentially two styles of saumagen: with or without chestnuts. I find them both to be delicious. I was given a tip from the woman at the counter: coat the slices with flour to keep the chestnuts from falling out into the pan. Worked quite well...
Now, the traditional style of serving is with sauerkraut (which I dislike) and good, hearty bread.
I tend towards serving it with mashed potatoes. Maybe it's the leftover American in me but for some reason I like it better.
This is living!
I can only say that if you somehow have the opportunity to get some, do it.
You won't be disappointed.