Berlin Market with a New York City Favorite

Wherever I am traveling, you can be sure there will be a visit to a local market.  I love to see the array of colorful products, how they are put on display, how the locals interact with the market vendors and more.  Back to Zurich from my recent travels, I went right to the market here to see what had changed.  And there it was, the newest addition, telling me that the holiday season is truly not far away.  Mistletoe is back, and Christmas decorations are soon to follow.  A perfect way to follow the seasons and the holidays, taste your way around the market (and the world), discovering products you may not find at home, wherever your home may be…

Winterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, Germany

A few weeks ago in Berlin, I went to the Winterfeldtmarkt, known for its busy Saturday morning atmosphere.  Tables of local fruits and vegetables were intermingled with those of  exotic ingredients, hand carved wooden objects, (random) hardware and ladies selling hand-knitted hats.  You could easily have lunch there too – ethnic eats abound (Greek and Turkish), one man throwing fish on a grill (above left), another serving up hefty plates of sauerkraut, and plenty of stands with fresh breads.  My find of the day, and enough reason to want to go back to Germany: the Laugencroissant.  Two words people: Pretzel.  Croissant.  For those of you familiar with (and like me- in adoration of) New York City’s famous Pretzel Croissant at the City Bakery – this was it!  A cross between a wholesome, salty, slightly doughy pretzel and a sweet, flaky, delicate croissant.  It was dark golden and even had the signature sesame seeds on top. I got one, and then got another.  And could only wonder if Maury Rubin of the City Bakery spent some time in Germany years back. If he did, gute Idee Maury!

Winterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, Germany

It was a grey and cold day, and while I watched other market goers warm up with cups of coffee and hot chocolate, to go with steaming plates of Kaiserschmarrn (that shredded pancake dessert we all fell for earlier in our trip), I couldn’t resist a cup of fresh squeezed pomegranate and orange juice.  Worth the shivers.  But then I got a plate of Kaiserschmarrn too!  As you can see below, it is essentially a huge, fluffy pancake that is then shredded up and tossed with your topping of choice: sugar and cinnamon, applesauce, chocolate or vanilla sauce, kirsch or stewed plums.  I went with just sugar. That’s how I order my crêpes in France too – just sugar and butter.  Simple mais bon.

Winterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, Germany

There was one more stand that got my attention, and from afar, I had no clue what it was actually selling. But boy was I intrigued.  There was a huge steel contraption, which I later saw was filled to the brim with little brown seeds, going through a sausage-like press.  Out came what looked to me like horsefeed. I stared, then grabbed my camera. At which point the gentleman next to me, apparently buying this mysterious product, told me to taste instead of shoot. He had a point. But, um… what is it, I asked. Turns out, not horsefeed.

Winterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, GermanyWinterfeldtmarkt, Berlin, Germany

The seeds in question were flax seeds, or linseeds, known for their popularity as a nutritional supplement.  The yellow liquid flowing from the machine was thus fresh cold-pressed linseed oil.  Sold in small brown glass bottles, the oil had a deep yellow color, which you can see up close, just above left.  The byproduct, Leinkuchen (linseed cake) is apparently a local favorite, eaten out of hand (bleh), mixed in muesli (better) or used as a baking ingredient (I have yet to try). If you are familiar with the oil and/or cakes, please let us know how you use it.  I’m awfully curious.  Until then, I’ll stick with the Laugencroissants!

Winterfeldtplatz in Schöneberg
Berlin, Germany
Saturday 8am to 4pm (also on Wednesday 8am to 2pm)

12 Responses to “Berlin Market with a New York City Favorite”

  1. Tweets that mention Berlin Market with a New York City Favorite | MyKugelhopf -- says:

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  2. VeggieGirl says:

    FANTASTIC market!

  3. Mom says:

    I just loved wandering around this market. Many of the food items really intrigued me and I ended up tasting a panini made with spinach and feta cheese. It was yummy!
    Tried on hats, tasted coffee, looked at all the chocolate desserts and wanted all the pastries on all the tables. Thank you for wanting to go to a market in Berlin. It gave us another sense of Berlin after seeing such a city with such history. Your photographs bring back great memories!!!!

  4. Emma says:

    How’d you know I was jonesing for another market post? I’m sure others were too! Just last Friday I went through your archives from last November and December, and enjoyed scene after scene of mistletoe, chestnuts, raclette, toys, sausage, and wood carvings. I even emailed those posts from last year to my boyfriend to try and spark his interest in foreign travel, focusing on the edible aspects (comme toujours).

    And now here’s another market to dream about, especially when hungry – which is right now! I’d even give the horsefeed a try.

  5. Julia @ Mélanger says:

    I just had to point out this market to Mr Mélanger. I think I have shared before, that we have nothing quite like this here in Brisbane. What a different life it would be to wander into to a maze of mystery delights like this. Love the Laugencroissant! Was the texture different from a croissant, too? More chewy like a pretzel?

    Re: linseed, there are a few blogs that I read which are focused on gluten free baking. They would definitely use linseed. Lauren & Natalie have two of my favourite gluten-free blogs. They are very creative with adapting recipes to suit a gluten-free diet. Maybe search for linseed here – probably will find a bunch of ideas???!!!

  6. uberVU - social comments says:

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    This post was mentioned on Twitter by jamrobis23: Berlin Market with a New York City Favorite: Wherever I am traveling, you can be sure there will be a visit to a local m

  7. Kerrin says:

    Emma, so glad to hear you were ready for another market visit. I certainly was! And I love seeing that you did a little traveling yourself on the blog, all of last year’s seasonal treats. Mmm, time to have those all again for sure. Hope the boyfriend gets inspired – and that I’ll be reading on the blog soon from you about an upcoming trip! But don’t let that hunger go too crazy – horsefeed, not so good. 🙂

    Julia, I always find it so hard to believe that you don’t visit markets like we find here in Europe all the time. They are just SO up your alley, you would be in heaven each time, not knowing where to look or what to taste first. As for the Laugencroissant, it definitely resembles a croissant, yet has a bit more heft to it, though not quite as chewy as a pretzel. Now that’s one recipe I would LOVE to master !!

    Thanks for the blog links too. I just recently found two fantastic gluten free blogs myself: (in english) (en francais)

  8. Andrea says:

    Not familiar with Leinkucken but BE STILL MY HEART!!!! — Laugencroissant and Bretzlen, 2 of these greatest bread products known to man and I cannot get them here! Ugh.

    Will you have one for me?

    Always a joy,

    PS. LOVED seeing all the market photos, thanks.

  9. Kerrin says:

    Yes, Andrea, I will have one for you. One croissant, one Bretzel and even one Laugencroissant when I get back to Germany. Or a pretzel croissant if I get to New York first ! 🙂

  10. Jess says:

    Flaxseed is great! I used to sprinkle ground flaxseed on my muesli and yogurt. You can use the oil in just about any of your baking for a little omega-3 kick.

    Not sure what to do with Leinkuchen, but I followed 101 cookbooks’ zucchini bread recipes and added flax. Turned out great (don’t think the flax did much for the taste, but it makes me think it’s healthier). It was a suggestion that came from one of the comments. I’m sure with the oil a little goes a long way.

  11. Kerrin says:

    Jess, thanks for the recommendations. I actually just bought a great bread covered in flaxseeds yesterday at the Coop. I am seeing it more and more now. A little omega-3 kick here and there can’t hurt, as you said ! I love 101 Cookbooks, great idea for the zucchini bread, I’ll have to try that too.

  12. Kerrin Rousset’s got a sweet tooth for Europe « Travel Blog Sites – The Web's Best says:

    […] has tasted chocolate and pastries in Berlin, Helsinki, London, Venice, Paris and Lyon, all throughout Denmark, Portugal and Croatia, as well as […]

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