Interesting Facts About Germany: Germans Love to Eat Fat

porkbelly-fat-speck-Il_candido_Lardo_di_Colonnata
“Just… wow.” — Image Credit: OneArmedMan (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Il_candido_Lardo_di_Colonnata.JPG)

Now I’m not saying all Germans like to eat fat, but my wife sure as hell does.

She eats something called Speck; cured strips of fatback, almost exactly like Italian Lardo. To me, this stuff tastes like uncooked bacon without a trace of meat. And it’s soft. Disgustingly, almost spreadably soft. If you took butter, extracted everything good, pure and innocent from it, then cursed its soul to hell with the power of a thousand burning puppies, you’d wind up with Speck.

My wife loves this kind of salty, heart attack food, and she gets away with it. In fact, she can eat whatever she wants and still stay thin and sexy. It’s almost as if the more horrifying the food, the sexier she becomes (I also suspect she feeds upon the nightmares of children).

Now, I’ve heard it said, Americans are so fat because of high-fructose corn syrup; that we are victims of a diet high in refined sugars, which explains our obesity epidemic. Further, this logic explains, Europeans are so thin because they eat more natural diets; they eat loads of bread and drink wine by the barrel, yet are still sexy enough to make smoking look awesome. I believe this logic is false.

While high-fructose corn syrup doesn’t seem to be good for the human body, it is not the rightful scapegoat of our rotund masses — portion control is. I’ve been all over Europe, and yes, they seem to eat whatever they want, but they do not sit down to pig troughs of super-sized, double-fried, batter-dipped slop 3 times daily. They eat little, birdlike meals, then hop on their Vespa scooters and drink Chianti at the beach beneath majestic sunsets.

So please, America, be more like my wife — eat the crazy stuff — just do it in small amounts. Now, please excuse me while I go blitzkrieg on this Luther Burger.

Thank you for reading and have an awesome day!

— OGM

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26 thoughts

  1. I have encountered Speck, too. Fortunately I happened to find “American Bacon” in a grocery in Salzburg so I never had to try Speck. It really grossed my parents out too. And I’m so glad you commented on my blog because your posts are hysterical. I will really enjoy getting your updates!

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  2. I actually tried several different forms of Speck. The Speck I had was hard and cut into cubes. The first time I saw everyone eating it I was wondering, “Why are they eating raw bacon??” and was later informed it was completely safe. I ended up liking it. I knew it was HORRIBLE for me. The other thing they really enjoyed was some sort of spreadable fat that was basically bacon grease. Maybe this is the one you’re referring to. It was also surprisingly good, but I couldn’t eat it. One thing I will never eat is leberwurst! Yuck

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  3. My father’s family is from Germany so I am familiar with the grossness of speck. The other bizarre German food I remember is Sulzewurst or headcheese – chunks of fatty meat and the occasional pimento suspended in a gelatinous brick. Sounds gross, but in small doses it’s not too bad. Perhaps that’s why they eat such small portions.

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  4. Holy Hell am I with you on this! These people eat the WEIRDEST stuff! I don’t even bother going to the butcher anymore. I’ll barf if I walk in there again. And the Blood Sausage…yeah…that has been banned from my house. My boyfriend, hates me for it, but I think I saved his life…and a pig’s for that matter!

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  5. TO think I believed I was the only one in the presence of a German person and couldnt stand Speck. Mind you, when I went to Northern Italy, I had the really dody speck: pure sliced fat… salted. Tasted like a cross between seaweed and McDonald’s ice cream.
    But I couldn’t agree more. I’m on exchange in germany, living with host families, and the food is INCREDIBLY fatty, and they don’t even eat it lightly… BIG MEALS. It’s a nightmare… so after 8 months of growing bigger…. I’m headed off to a gym today.
    AT Last.
    Hopefully the ridiculous amount of speck in my diet won’t put the weight back on. :/

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  6. Great post! This is very true — don’t eat 3 enormous meals a day — better to have small snacks — most of it healthy food, but then you can have small portiions of the more sinister foods.

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    1. Sam, Speck actually IS bacon. To clarify: There are two kinds of Speck. What The Husband describes above is what would be Rückenspeck (bacon from the back of the pig) and is completely devoid of any meat. What we in Berlin eat much more frequently is cut from the belly and looks just like your breakfast rashers. Except we generally buy it as a ‘brick’ rather than slices.
      I usually don’t recommend Wikipedia but in this case it’s quite useful: http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speck It’s in German but the pic speaks for itself.
      Oh, and to cement the predominant stereotype: I do love Speck, Schmalz and Leberwurst.
      And one more thing: What does the audience have to say about Eisbein? Not my cup of tea but certainly much-loved in Berlin.

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  7. Interesting. The amount of people around here with german blood in them amounts to about 4%.
    I’m part of that 4% and I’m the only one I know who likes fat. They all think I’m crazy but apparently I’m just german.
    Oh and cook your wife a nice pork shoulder roast with the skin on. She’ll love it.

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  8. I come from a German family (mother’s side); they eat many disgusting things. All things fat (usually some eviscerated animal; actually, that’s the part you eat) appeal to me greatly. I especially love Landtjaeger and Teewurst (both molded-together scapings from the butcher’s floor after all other usable cuts are gone). Glaaargh…sorry, Pavlovian response… The difference is, as an amertican, I plop down to a game after dining (gnoshing, really), while Germans get up and go for a walk after they eat. Losers.

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  9. You are funny as hell. I love your wife. I understand. I am German and married now for 37 years but still mess up once in a while for example my husband said the lids need to go on the top shelf in the dishwasher because they are plastic and I responded I prefer to do the handjob. He started laughing and did not stop so I guesses he misunderstood me AGAIN. It still happens. Handjob means I wash them in the sink by hand. Yes we too could write a book I think…..our marriage is never dull.

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  10. My German Wife likes to eat RAW ground pork while in Germany, for breakfast, but wouldn’t touch the stuff in the US because it is not fresh enough. Blaw. My fellow Americans mostly find it gross as well.

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