I sometimes feel self-conscious about the content on my blog. I worry about my capabilities in English, grammar, spelling but most of all that people will not like the food I am writing about. Especially some of the very basic, traditional German recipes like “Wurstsalat” (sausage salad, that’s right!) and... Schmalz. But then I quickly remember how good and unmistakably German these recipes are. They are part of the story and therefore I have to write about them.
In Germany, Schmalz is generally made from rendered pork or goose fat. It’s a very useful product in the kitchen for frying and baking. But it is also eaten just by itself, on a piece of rustic bread, sprinkled with a little salt as part of your Brotzeit. My grandma used to render Griebenschmalz (Schmalz with cracklings) to give as Christmas gifts to family and friends each year. She would present it in a little earthenware pot, covered with a red and white checkered wax cloth and tied with a beautiful ribbon.
The word Schmalz comes form the Middle High German “Smalz” which is derived from “schmelzen” (melting). A lot of traditional German recipes use Schmalz instead of clarified butter or vegetable oil.