Pies, pints and beer wars in Brandenburg.


meat pie

A pie … and a glass of red.

Here at Helsing’s kitchen, we were planning to make a cherry and ricotta pie using Rachel Roddy’s recipe. But the weather has derailed us, twice. First, back in April, a hard frost meant the crop of local Brandenburg cherries and plums was wiped out – the cherries in the local shops are generally from Turkey. At least the apples, which blossom later, survived the unusually low temperatures. Second, the temperatures right now mean it is anything but cherry pie weather. It’s blustery, overcast and cool, around 18 degrees with the first sun forecast around 9 o’clock this evening. That sounds a little late but makes sense this far north just four days away from the shortest night of the year. Continue reading


Helsing’s summer kitchen is open!

chicken salad on the balcony

A hot chicken salad on the balcony.

Here at Helsing’s kitchen we effectively have a new kitchen. We are cooking outside, on the balcony, on gas. And how great is that! Does cooking outside, on a real flame, stir ancient connections to a simpler life? Whatever the attraction might be, there is nothing like cooking on gas for its speed of reaction. Team Helsing’s indoor kitchens are electric – and induction still doesn’t come close. Continue reading

Meatballs … are what’s happening in the shade.

meatballs after

Here at Helsing’s kitchen we are enjoying the Whitsun weekend. Whitsun translates as Pfingsten in German. The Whitsun holiday is a big thing here in Germany. Whit Monday is always a public holiday and very much on people’s lips.  The supermarket this morning was full of people wishing each other “Schoene Pfingstferien!” – “Enjoy the Whitsun holidays!”, or “Schoene Pfingsttage!” – “Have a nice time over Whitsun!” Even the peony is a “Pfingstrose”, literally, a Whitsun rose. Continue reading