Happy International Pretzel Day!

Happy International Pretzel Day!

Whether you prefer the traditional pretzel or the crunchy salty snack there is plenty to celebrate.

There are a few different stories as to how the pretzel came to be, but most agree they have a Catholic background from the Middle Ages in Europe. It is said that Catholic Monks used left over pieces of dough to make treats for well-behaved students. The shape of a knot represents a range of meanings from a traditional prayer posture to ‘tying the knot’ in marriage, whilst serving a practical purpose to hang on sticks to be served. In the 16th century in Austria pretzels even became a symbol of holiday season good luck and were hung on Christmas trees.

Today, pretzels are consumed worldwide and come in a variety of flavours with seeds, nuts, glazes and more. Why not celebrate International Pretzel day by hanging out with friends making your own pretzels! We hung out with our dear friend, Mama Schnucki, to bake her favourite recipe. Check out the video below and the details on their blog HERE.

 

Let’s make it! Krapfen

Krapfen or Berliner {Jam filled Donuts}

These soft and fluffy Krapfen {Jam filled donuts} are eaten year-round in Germany but are particularly popular during Fashing season {carnival} and on Faschingsdienstag {Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras}. Faschingsdienstag in Germany is the peak of the Fashing, reflecting the practice of the last day of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting starts on Aschermittwoch {Ash Wednesday}. Even though, most people don’t fast any more, they do enjoy the rituals of Fasching.

On Faschingsdienstag, people dress up to celebrate Fasching … and they eat a lot of Krapfen on this day. Kids dress up for school, depending on the workplace people get dressed up for work and the fluffy treat is devoured everywhere. I decided this Fasching to make some Krapfen myself for our Team to celebrate Faschingsdienstag and to celebrate Fashing in general as I am a big fan of dressing up!

The characteristics of Krapfen are the white ring that circles the center, the raspberry jam filling (or any other jam filling you like) and the generously dusted top with powdered sugar, however I prefer cinnamon sugar. My father-in-law who is a pastry chef by trade used to make Krapfen in the 1000 for his pastry & bakeries in Munich. And during Fasching he used to fill 1 in every 100 Krapfen with mustard – now I think this is the silly season J

I tried to do a step by step recipe with pictures to make it easier for you to follow the recipe.

Let’s get started!

 STEP BY STEP RECIPE Krapfen {Jam filled donuts}

We start with the Dampfl {polish}. Here a step by step of how to best do it.

Add the flour in a bowl, create a crater in the middle. Crumble in the yeast (I like to use fresh yeast), add in 2/3rds of the luke warm milk, add one teaspoon of sugar and gently stir to dissolve the yeast without adding too much flour. Let is sit for 10 – 15 mins.

In the meantime, use a fresh bowl and mix two eggs, 50g of melted butter, 50g sugar, 1 teaspoon salt and the rest of the milk – mix well and poor it over the Dampfl after it has doubled in size (usually after 10 – 15mins).

Mix all ingredients to a soft and slightly sticky dough. You can do that by hand or with a mixer with dough hooks attached. Let is rise for 30mins or until the dough has doubled in size.

Roll dough to 1cm to 1.5cm thickness.

Prepare a baking pan lined with floured wax paper. Using a glass or coffee cup, cut rounds. You can roll the very last dough scraps into firm balls and pat it flat so they look similar to the rest of the rounds.

Cover the dough with a tea towel and let it rise in a warm place for about 20-25 mins or until they have puffed up noticeably. This is important – if you don’t let them rise long enough, they will not be high and fluffy in the end.

Once the dough is risen, heat a medium saucepan or pot of oil over medium heat until it reaches 160-165 °C degrees. You can use a cooking or deep-frying thermometer, but I make Krapfen without, it just takes a little adjusting though… Dip a wooden skewer/chopstick or handle of a wooden cooking spoon into the hot oil for testing the temperature.  If the oil starts steadily bubbling, then the oil is hot enough for frying. (bubbling vigorously = too hot, very few bubbles = not hot enough). As always: Be careful handling hot oil!

Carefully slip 3 rounds into the oil. Watch the Krapfen as they get golden brown then gently with a flat spatula turn them over. You will notice that the Krapfen will get a nice white ring.

Carefully transfer the Krapfen to a paper-towel-lined rack with a slotted spatula.

Let the Krapfen cool.

Dust the Doughnuts with cinnamon sugar.

Place the jam in a piping bag with a round tip. Stick a skewer or chopstick in the side of the Krapfen to create a tunnel. Pipe in some of the jam. You will know when you put in too much as the jam will come back out.

Enjoy! They taste best eaten on the same day.

 

 

Ingredients

Makes about 20

550g Flour

200 ml luke warm milk

40 g fresh yeast

50 g butter

65 g sugar

1 teaspoon salt

2 eggs

200 g jam

powder sugar

 

 

 

 

Karneval 2018

It’s Germany’s carnival season! It starts on the 11th day of November at exactly 11 minutes after 11 am and ends at the stroke of midnight on shroud Tuesday – also referred to as Fat Tuesday (the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday – the beginning of Lent). Brisbane’s only German Karneval party is about to kick off this coming Saturday at the German Club! You will be treated to live entertainment, Delicatessen, the biggest range of German beers, best dressed awards and even more…

The celebrations of Carnival (Karneval or Fasching) date back to the Middle Ages. Karneval festivals were celebrated by the Romans and ancient Egyptians. The word stems from the “carne vale” (Latin) which means “without meat” and is comparable to the Mardi Gras tradition of eating, drinking and merriment before the fasting season.

Affectionately termed the ‘fifth season’ starts in November but the main events come along in February each year including a women’s carnival day where women of the city wear fancy dress on their way to work followed by masked balls and parties at night.

The big day for Karneval in Germany is Rose Monday (also known as Shrove Monday) with its massive parades. The big Mardi Gras is on Shrove Tuesday.

Switzerland’s biggest carnival is Basler Fasnacht. Austria more commonly calls it Fasching like south and east Germany. The term Fasching is seen in Berlin and northern Germany. North West Germany says Karneval with Cologne being the most famous celebrators in Germany. Without a doubt the Carnival in Rio is the world’s most famous party.

Top 8 Carnival celebrations in the world

  • Carnival in Rio | Brazil
  • Notting Hill | UK
  • Mardi Gras | USA
  • Santa Cruz Carnaval | Tenerife
  • Carnevale di Venezia | Italy
  • Carnival | Trinidad & Tobago
  • Quebec Winter Carnival | Canada
  • Cologne Karneval | Germany

Tickets for this weeks event HERE

FB + Insta | @brisbanekarneval #brisbanekarneval

That’s a wrap on 2017!

A little rain at the final weekend of Oktoberfest Brisbane couldn’t dampen the spirits of thousands of festival-goers who this year packed into the iconic German cultural event which celebrated its mighty 10th installment.

Some blame our 9 burly Bavarian friends for bringing the rain with them, but we’ll let them get away with it for their efforts helping Brisbane launch Australia’s very first “Oktoberpole”, a tradition which proudly adorned King George Square in spectacular fashion on Oktober 1 to signal the start of our city’s German celebrations.

In fact it has been a year of firsts for Oktoberfest Brisbane, with the inaugural Bavarian Brewing Competition joining the fold in 2017, seeing eight local breweries test their crafts making two styles of German beer true to style – and their creations were on display at the Festival for all to taste.

We also crowned our first back-to-back champs in the Bavarian Strongmen competition, with Ze Fritzels silencing their opponents with a second consecutive title and there was plenty of hair to marvel at as a bunch of beautiful blokes battled it out for the Beardmeister title.

The Miss Oktoberfest Brisbane competition graced with unflattering style and the dulcet Deutsch sound of the infamous Oompah band is probably still beating through your veins.

That’s a wrap on 2017 and we hope you enjoyed it.

The Best of the Blogs

Did you don your Dirndl or Lederhosen and let loose on the dancefloor to the Fliegerlied last weekend? Or are you planning your epic Bavarian adventure for this upcoming weekend?
Whether you want to re-live the highlights, or you’re trying to plan for your special day this weekend, we’ve been scouring the Internet to see what bloggers have been saying about Oktoberfest Brisbane 2017 so far.

 

What Did They Think?

Thrifty Family Travels lists their favourite 20 fun family activities from Oktoberfest Brisbane 2017. From face painting and circus workshops to Human Foosball and Little Miss Oktoberfest – it looks like they had a ball when they came along last Sunday!

 

Four to Adore brought their family of six along for a healthy dose of German culture. They spent a lot of time in the KinderZone enjoying the stage and activities. They somehow managed to also cram in rides, the OktoberFEAST cooking demonstration, and the live music! I bet their tribe slept well after it.

 

Weekend Notes enjoyed all of the highlights including the Bavarian Brewing competition the shoe-slapping dancing and the Munich Biergarten.

 

Smart Steps to Australia has a list of top tips for bringing your kids to Oktoberfest Brisbane with lots of practical advice and information to help you prepare for your big day. Her kids adored the dancing (check out those groovy moves in the video!), the jumping castle and the petting zoo – in particular the fluffy chickens were a big hit!

 

It looks like another family who now need to get a fluffy chicken for a pet after visiting the petting zoo is Champagne Days. They enjoyed sharing the cultural experience with their son, especially as their German Festival experience dates back an incredible three decades!

Coffee Mumma switched her usual cappuccino for a stein and brought her family along to Oktoberfest Brisbane where they enjoyed the face painting, the delicious food and the KinderZone shows. She hits the nail on the head when she describes the ‘joyful’ atmosphere while also noting how easy it is to navigate with young kids.

Entertain My Tribe has posted a practical review worth checking out. We definitely agree that the pork knuckle and cakes are a highlight that everyone should try! And it just goes to show that nobody is too young to enjoy Oktoberfest Brisbane as their writer’s 19-month-old had a brilliant time!

Coasting Australia’s roving reporters explored all that Oktoberfest Brisbane had to offer, describing it as: “a great family day out!” Just check out the yummy food they got to enjoy!

Live All the Days are here to set the record straight: Oktoberfest Brisbane is an amazing day out for families. Having attended Oktoberfest in Munich before, they also declare that Oktoberfest Brisbane is just as much fun!

A Cold Cup of Chloe enjoyed everything from the KinderZone to the live music (everyone loves the chicken dance!) They found plenty to entertain their little one and created a lovely day of family memories.

 

 

 

Tips for using your Digital Wallet

Oktoberfest Brisbane is back this Friday for it’s second weekend! To make the most out of these fun-filled days, let’s go through the top seven tips for the Cashless system and setting up your Digital Wallet.

  1. You can set up your Digital Wallet prior to entering the festival. All you have to do is head to https://oktoberfestbrisbane.com.au/digital-wallet/ and enter your ticket barcode and details. That way the fun can begin as soon as you step in!
  2. If you’re entering with a group, make sure you come in with the same ticket you have set up your Digital Wallet with. You don’t want your Digital Wallet linked with someone else’s wristband!
  3. Setting up Auto Top-Up will save you from entering your card details in more than once. All you have to do is select Auto Top-Up when you submit a new Top-Up! Less time entering in your card details and more time for schnitzels and steins!
  4. Setting up on site is easy too! Just remember, your wristband number and 5-digit security code can be found on the back of your wristband chip. After registering your wristband and creating your Digital Wallet, your security code is now your account password!
  5. If you have money leftover in your Digital Wallet, you will be automatically refunded at the end of the Festival if you Top Up exclusively in your Digital Wallet vs the Top Up Stations on-site (Monday 16th).
  6. If you decide to Top Up your wristband on-site, don’t forget to keep your wristband or keep a record of your wristband number (we suggest taking a photo). You’ll need to fill out a manual refund form, you can find this on our website.
  7. If you’re returning back from last weekend, make sure you link in your new ticket or wristband into your existing Digital Wallet so you can use any unspent credit from last weekend.

Follow these steps and you should have a hassle-free experience with our cashless system. However, if you do run into any problems setting up or Topping Up, head to our Information Tent and one of our friendly staff will be able to help you out.

Win The Trip of A Lifetime!

 

To celebrate the tenth anniversary of Australia’s largest and most authentic German Festival, we are giving you and a lucky friend the the chance to win the trip of a lifetime, thanks to our partners Singapore Airlines, German National Tourist Office, Brisbane German Language School, and Tucher! The ultimate German experience is up for grabs over at The Weekend Edition, as a thank you from us for a decade of loyal celebration at our Festival.

The trip includes:

  • Round trip airfares for two to Germany
  • Seven nights accommodation with breakfast at each stop.
  • One term of German Language School so you can embrace your inner German!
  • Five-day rail pass

Your adventure will be jam packed with activities and the chance bask in the beauty of the German countryside. You’ll start with two nights in Munich – the home of Oktoberfest! – with a visit to Nymphenburg Palace or Munich Residence and a Gray Line bus tour to see the local sights. You’ll then have two nights in Garmisch where you’ll spend time exploring and putting to practise the skills you picked up from your term with the German Language School. We’ll then send you to the historic city of Nuremberg, with two nights at Hotel Drei Raben, and a beer sampling session and tour through Tucher, one of Germany’s finest breweries followed by dinner with their renowned brewing team! To finish the trip off in style, your final destination will be to the Rhine Valley Wine region with one night in Rüdesheim am Rhein staying at Rüdesheimer Schloss wine hotel with dinner and breakfast included.

Congratulations Tarni Eastwood on winning the trip of a lifetime!

 

Burschenverein Langengeisling

Meet Beer Matt

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Matt Kirkegaard is one of Australia’s most experienced beer writers and presenters, having close to 15 years experience as a passionate beer advocate. In 2014 he was named Australia’s first beer writer of the year when he won the Media Trophy at the Australian International Beer Awards. We are lucky enough to call him family and our Official Beer Ambassador of Oktoberfest Brisbane.

Even with his background as a beer writer, Matt’s great passion is hosting beer dinners and tastings for the same reason that a picture is worth a thousand words – tasting great beers is much better than reading about them.

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Matt has been working closely with Oktoberfest Brisbane for five years with the mission of changing Australian perceptions that Oktoberfest Brisbane is a drinking festival. One of the great things about beer, and one of the most significant, is the role that it plays is the social and cultural life of many countries, and Germany is a great example of this.

While beer is an important element of Oktoberfest Brisbane, the Bavarian cultural festival celebrates the important role that beer has played in the economic and cultural life of the German state much more than it celebrates the drinking of it.“I have been lucky to experience Oktoberfest in Munich, and the Brisbane event is as close to it as you can get,”  said Matt. “I really appreciate the effort they go to serve authentic Bavarian beers at the events, and to educate Australians about the beers and why they matter… and not just how good they taste.” This is what Matt celebrates too, and why he is such as passionate advocate for Oktoberfest Brisbane.

oktoberfest_brisbane_matt_kirkegaard

As we move closer to the Festival Matt will be joining us on our website to educate and invite us into the world of Oktoberfest Brisbane beer, other beverage offering as well as speak further on our inaugural Bavarian Brewing Competition. “The Bavarian Brewing Competition is another great initiative that is going to celebrate the best of Queensland brewing matched with the finest Bavarian traditions,” said Matt.

Stay tuned for more from our Official Beer Ambassador and make sure you say “Guten Tag” to him when you spot him at the Festival.

 

 

 

 

Sharing our top five memories of Oktoberfest Brisbane

Oktoberfest Brisbane is made up of many moments. There’s that awe-inspiring moment when you step inside the massive Oktoberfest Tent and are hit by the energy of thousands of culture-loving festival goers having the time of their lives at the endless rows of tables. Then there’s the moment you lay back on the grass enjoying a traditional German afternoon tea in the sunshine watching the world go by. Or the one where you go head to head on the dodgems with your kids who can’t help but squeal with excitement every time they block your path.

No single moment defines Oktoberfest Brisbane; they all merge together to create an unmissable cultural celebration. But there are definitely defining moments that stand out for each of us from past Festivals.

As we gear ourselves up for a sensational Oktoberfest Brisbane 2017, we asked our Oktoberfest Brisbane family to share some of their favourites…

oktoberfest-brisbane-empty-tent

“My favourite moment is when I walk through the Oktoberfest Tent the day before we open. I look at the rows of empty tables and I walk around the Festival site that is waiting for its first visitors. I have shivers down my spine and get goosebumps all over. Every year our dedicated team pull together to create this special and unique Festival, and every year we create something bigger and better than the last. We are blessed to have such an amazing team who share our passion and vision.”

Kim Zoulek, Festival Director

oktoberfest-brisbane-anzapfen

“The opening ceremony when the Lord Mayor taps the first keg of beer is my favourite Oktoberfest Brisbane moment every year. It’s a moment that makes me literally hold my breath until I hear the words “O’zapft is” (“It is tapped”), then I can breathe again and look up to take in all of the smiling faces around me. On the stage in that instant, it feels like all of our hard work and effort over the last year has paid off. Seeing everyone having such a good time is the best reward.”

Boris Zoulek, Festival Director

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“Each year, there are so many incredible moments that it’s hard to pick just one! If I had to narrow it down, I’d say my favourite is hosting the Krapfen Eating round of the Bavarian Strongmen competition. There’s something hilarious about watching grown men desperately trying to eat jam-filled doughnuts floating in custard. When they emerge, with their facial hair slathered in sugary goo and looking like Santa Claus, it never fails to make me laugh.”

David Pawsey, Oktoberfest Brisbane MC

oktoberfest-brisbane-dancing

“My favourite memory is from my first year working at Oktoberfest Brisbane when I finally put my inhibitions aside and succumbed to the lure of the Fliegerlied. After singing along to it for the entire Festival, I finally let myself go and danced along too. I only wished I’d given in and danced sooner!”

Summer Sutherland, Programming

oktoberfest-brisbane-final-song

“I love when the band plays the final song on the Sunday night and Oktoberfest Brisbane draws to a close for another year. It’s a moment when all of the staff, stallholders, and Festival team come together to sing and dance with the crowds. After months of hard work, we are all united in celebration and we know that we’re all one big Oktoberfest Brisbane family.”

Holli O’Brien, Group Marketing Manager

Narrowing down our favourite moments was really tough as there are just so many to choose from!

We would love for you to tell us about your favourite Oktoberfest Brisbane moment. Tell us your favourite memory or moment HERE for  your chance to win one of five double passes to this year’s Festival.