Friday, 17 April 2009

Reliably good food at a well-known address in Berlin

Hilda and I went to Berlin Easter 2009. I am writing this in October, so this post is backdated. On our second evening we went to Restaurant Hackescher Hof, of which I had fond memories from the time when I lived in Berlin. Since it was asparagus season, and asparagus is a bit of a national religion in Germany when it is in season, I of course recommended that we have asparagus. Hilda had always been amused by this, so I went to see whether I couldn't convert her.

Both of us had asparagus, I had it with mixed cold meats and Hilda had it with ham (cured and dried, not cooked) and in both cases with sauce hollandaise and new potatoes. For wine we selected an absolutely stunning dry traminer from Saale-Unstrut, which worked very well with this. The asparagus was possibly the best I have ever had and Hilda is now firmly converted to what I consider to be the king of vegetables. The asparagus referred to here is of course white asparagus, the king of vegetables, not its inferiour green cousin, which only is a prince of vegetables.

Hackescher Hof is a well-known address in Berlin and worth every cent that you are going to spend there. Reliably good, excellent service, and a wine list that will satisfy mainstream as well as eclectic wishes very well.

Service was very friendly and attentive and again the modern very personal kind of service that we both appreciate.

Gaucho rice

I am posting this as a separate recipe because it will be referred to frequently as a side dish, even though I gave a short version of it earlier.

Take 1 measure of rice (the size of the measure is determined by your hunger and how many people are eating). Put a bit of your preferred fat (butter or olive oil are my two preferred ones) into the bottom of a pan, add your rice and fry it without stirring until the bottom layer is brown but not burned. Add 2 measures of water, salt to taste, cover, bring to a boil and simmer gently until all water has been soaked up by the rice. The flavour is slightly nutty.