EXPATS AGAIN! Experiencing other cultures while enriching our global view.



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Munich, Germany
I am married to the love of my life and am finally able to shower him with all of the attention he deserves. I am now retired and living the life here in Europe. I am an American, he is an Australian, and this is our second overseas address. The first was Shanghai, China and now Munich, Germany. Come along and live the life with us as we continue our adventure of discovering all Europe has to offer.

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Sunday, January 10, 2010


Puffy Chocolate Chip CookiesImage by fritish via Flickr
I read a lot of blogs about life in Germany and one of the common threads among expats  here is that we can't get our favorite products. 

 For myself as well as others, no Crisco and no Nestle's chocolate chips mean no Tollhouse cookies and that, dear reader, is unpardonable in any country.

Nevertheless, Germany has just been ranked the world's fourth best place to live by the 2010 Quality of Life Index, compiled by travel magazine International Living. Most assuredly, it's ranking had nothing whatsoever to do with the fact that you can't get  Nestle Tollhouse Cookie ingredients here easily.

Instead, Germany's ranking was based on such things as quality health insurance, high average wages, and quality infrastructure.  It also made note of the fact that sports and nature lovers are enthralled with the number of national parks and hiking trails. Affordable real estate, safety, environment, climate, cost of living, and plenty of theater, art, and clasical music concerts also made Germany irresistable for many people.  And just to add icing to the cake, the Christmas markets and fairy-tale towns appeal to all of the romantics among us.

But, can you get a good chocolate chip cookie in the land of beer and sausages?

While I'm still on the hunt for them, there are some excellent products that German markets offer.  While I'm still in the very experimental stages of product testing, here are my favorites..... so far (which, if included in the Quality of Living ranking, might have moved this fair country up a notch or two, in my humble opinion.)

Although not all German products, they can be  found in German markets.  
 In no particular ranking order ~~ drum roll please?

 1.  Persil Laundry Soap, unmatchable cleaning. If we ever move back to the states, I'm filling our moving container with a lifetime supply.

Persil SelectionImage by elmada via Flickr

2.  Berchesgardner Fresh Milch (milk), yum! (I like served cold from the glass bottles).

täglich ein Glas MilchImage by icatus via Flickr


3.  Belfrutta Diat Waldfruchte (Berry Jam), just bursting with flavor. Try it on buttered toast.

Strawberry jam.Image via Wikipedia

4. Emsal Boden-Pflege, granite and marble cleaner-- superb!  Our floors and countertops literally shine.

New CountertopsImage by shareski via Flickr

5.  Dallmayr Biscuits, all varieties, but especially the ginger biscuits with a hot cuppa, : ).

Biscuit PlateImage by Caro Wallis via Flickr

6.  Dallmayr meats, proscuitto in particular, preferrably wrapped around juicy cantalope

Meats At DallmayrImage by extraface via Flickr

7.  Hacker Pschorr Beer, hands down our most favorite, unbeatable on a hot day.

Hacker-Pschorr Edelhell

8. Alkmene Shampoo- Simply lovely
Alkmene German shampoo

9. Faber Castell, primo Art supplies and pastels extraordinare! (More about this undertaking in a later post.)

Faber-Castell Pastel Set - 48 Soft Pastels - O...Image by pigpogm via Flickr

10.  Cera-fix Glaskeromik-Reiniger, keeps our ceramic cooktop looking brand new.  (This product is perhaps my most favorite of all, to date.)  This stuff is amazing!!!!!

Cera-fix Glaskeramik Reiniger

11.  Illy Dark Roast Whole Bean Expresso,  from Trieste Italy, but available worldwide.  Once you go Illy, you never go back....just sayin'
Illy coffeeImage by cmozz via Flickr
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These are 11 of our favorite products found here in Munich markets. But remember, the test trials are just in the beginning stages.  It's possible that some of these products can be located in stores in the states or Great Britain.

I know my mother-in-law uses Persil in Australia.                      

These are our favorites, what are yours?

Guten-illy coffee

                              GUTEN ILLY COFFEE


Frau said...

Still trying to find out the products I love. Thanks for your insight I will have to try a few! Happy New Year!

PS I filled my suitcase with Crisco and nestle chocolate chips.

Annie Stromquist said...

Thanks for a great post! I loved reading about all these German products. I knew already about only one of them - the Faber Castell pastels. Yes, they are fabulous.

Anonymous said...

I've never seen Nestle's chocolate chips here. As a substitute buy chocolate bars and mash them up.

You can buy fresh chocolate chip cookies around Munich. For example, at Starbucks.

And if you don't mind storebought, the grocery stores are starting to carry some pretty good chocolate chip (and double chocolate chip) cookies.

Expats Again said...

Frau, you are going to have to share your list of things you bring back. I'm always forgetting something.

Annie, I knew you would recognize those pastels, a long tradition of excellence.

Anonymous, Thanks for the great tip about the chocolate bars--I never would have thought of it. Crisco, I hear, is available at sex shops -- EEEK! I think I'd rather follow Frau's lead and bring some from home next time.

Snooker said...

I agree, Persil is AWESOME!

But if I were to go back to the States, I don't think that I could live without FLIPS! Erdnuss Flips (think cheese curls with peanut instead of cheese flavor) come in a serving-size bag for .25. How great is that?!

As for semi-sweet chips, try Topsies. They are available in my neighbourhood Kaiser's. Unfortunately they are zartbitter, but I find they do quite nicely, thank you.

Oh and Crisco... Try Sanella or "backfett". You might have to adjust the recipe a bit, but I bet it is close.

Keep on immersing yourself in the culture and food.
I'm very proud of you!

Expats Again said...

Snooker, I will have to try the Erdnuss Flips--thanks for the heads up!

Hummm....Topsies, I wonder if Hit or Tangelman sell them, they are the closest grocers--and I am on foot, no car in this household, much to my dismay. Gotta keep the aerobic exercise, says the hubby, arrrrgh!

I found Crisco at Karstadt this morning!! What is Sanella made from?

Thanks for the compliments, I will keep on learning, I'm sure!

PiNG aka Patti said...

I'm in Denmark and I just want to say thanks for sharing your favorite cleaning products. I'm making a list for our next trip to the German border - a decent laundry detergent would be a wonderful thing!

Expats Again said...

You're very welcome, Patti! Persil comes highly recommended, we love it.