WASHINGTON - Aug. 22, 2002 - It all started with a public celebration in honor of a German prince’s wedding and has blossomed into one of the world’s most famous festivals. The Munich Oktoberfest, which is held this year from Sept. 21 through Oct. 6, began in 1810 in honor of Crown Prince Ludwig’s wedding to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. In subsequent years, the festival grew from the horse races that closed the original celebration to include an agricultural fair, amusement rides and, of course, the famous German beer counters.
At the Munich Marriott Hotel, Oktoberfest is a great excuse to celebrate Germany’s famous beer, food, dress and music. At the heart of the celebration are the German beer tents where people gather in lederhosen or drindls, traditional German clothing, and dance on their chairs and tables to polkas and other festive music. While Munich’s breweries, the only beer companies permitted to sell their wares at the festival, produce special beers available only at the Oktoberfest counters, many Munich beers such as Loewenbrau, Augustiner and Hofbrauhaus are sold outside Germany and can be used for your Oktoberfest celebrations.
For a taste of Oktoberfest, Burkhard Schoof, the Munich Marriott Hotel’s executive chef, provides the following recipes.
Obatzda - Bavarian cheese spread
Serves four people—1 pound Camembert cheese / ? Red onion sliced into thin rings /
? Red onion chopped fine / 1 teaspoon Paprika powder
/ 2 tablespoons Finely chopped chives / ? teaspoon Cumin powder / ? cup German wheat beer / 4 Soft dough pretzels
In a large bowl, place the cheese, finely chopped red onion, paprika, cumin powder and beer. Mix by hand. This should create an orange colored mixture. Place this mixture on a plate or platter. Garnish with red onion rings and chives. Serve the four oven-fresh pretzels on the side. Germans like to break open the pretzel and spread the cheese mixture on it like butter.
Rahmschwammerl mit Semmelknodel - Bavarian mushroom cream sauce with bread dumplings / Serves four people - Mushroom cream sauce: 4 ounces Button mushrooms / 4 ounces Chantrelle mushrooms / 4 ounces Cepes mushrooms / 4 ounces Oyster mushrooms / 2 tablespoons Onions finely chopped / 1 bunch Parsley finely chopped / ? cup White wine / 2 tablespoons Lemon juice / 2 cups Heavy cream / Salt and pepper to taste
In a large saucepot, sauté the mushrooms and the onions together. Add the wine and reduce over medium heat. Add the cream and reduce until the sauce coats the back of a spoon. Add salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste. Garnish with parsley.
Bread dumplings: 15 Kaiser rolls, dried, cut into 1 inch cubes / 1 cup Warm milk / 3 ounces Egg yolk / Salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste
In a large mixing bowl, place the dried Kaiser rolls and the warm milk. Let the rolls soak up the milk. When the milk is soaked in and the rolls are moistened, pour the egg yolks over the bread mixture and knead together by hand. Add salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste.
Roll the mixture into tennis ball-sized shapes and drop them into a pot of salted boiling water. Boil them for 10-15 minutes until cooked all the way through.
Place in a serving dish and pour the mushroom mixture over the top. They are ready to serve.
The Munich Marriott Hotel, along with over 2,100 Marriott-affiliated hotels worldwide, participates in Marriott Rewards, the guest reward program that allows members to earn their choice of points or airline miles for dollars spent during each stay.