Branded Fruit Topping

By Mark Wieser Sometime in the mid-60s keeping a jar of fermenting fruits on one’s kitchen countertop became the rage. It was so easy to place a heaping spoonful or two of this topping over a mound of vanilla ice cream or to drizzle it over a freshly baked slice of pound cake. It added sweetness,…

Mama’s Hot German Potato Salad

By Mark Wieser Many centuries ago, few Germans would have thought of using potatoes as food, only the very poorest. In fact, most potatoes were fed to livestock. While we might find that strange, it was very much a surprise to me on my first trip to Germany to find my cousins laughing that we…

Rosettes Cookies (Crullers)

By Mark Wieser I cannot recall the last time I had a Rosette! No holiday went by that we didn’t enjoy eating dozens of these. They are the kind of thing which doesn’t allow for eating just one. It took me a while to find a local recipe—I am pretty certain they were first introduced…

Mrs. Wieser’s Turkey Dressing

By Mark Wieser Nothing brought more comfort and joy to major holidays in the Wieser household than the aromas associated with my mother preparing a turkey. In our home we had a turkey for Thanksgiving and Christmas. A baked ham was always our fare for New Years and Easter. If we had been away from…

Oktoberfest and Apple Butter

By Mark Wieser Oktoberfest isn’t as old of a tradition as I had once thought. Seems a Bavarian King named Ludwig I, held the first such celebration in honor of his marriage which happened to be on Columbus Day, 1810. (I am not certain Europeans celebrated that any way.) Nevertheless, the citizens of München were…

BREAD AND BUTTER PICKLES

By Mark Wieser My dad never planted cucumbers in his garden—just radishes, onions, potatoes (lots of them), a few eggplants, and sometimes—a few rows of corn. He would spend many evening hours in the spring spading his sizable garden, which also included about a dozen apple trees. The tallest of these stood close to 20…

Beef Fondue: Fondue Bourguignonne

By: Mark Wieser In the summer of 1964, my mother, me and two of my sisters toured Europe. Our purpose was to meet my late father’s sister and relatives for the very first time. We knew practically nothing of her or her family. I had begun writing to my aunt (Tante Anna) shortly after my…

Brat Haus Beer Cheese Dip

By Case D. Fischer September is here and that means football season. For those of you who know the Fischers and Wiesers, you know that means Aggie Football. For many years we have had season tickets to the games and we are able to walk from our place to Kyle Field. One of our traditions…

Beef Stroganoff

By Mark Wieser One funny thing about my Mom—her cooking got better as she grew older. Everyone said she was a great cook and had learned that from her mother, who ran a boardinghouse and even the Central Hotel at one time where she offered a daily lunch. (She also had the contract to feed…

The Best County Fair Cobbler

By Case D. Fischer It’s Gillespie County Fair Week, the time that we all celebrate the tradition of the Oldest Continuous County Fair in Texas. I venture to say that everyone who grew up in Fredericksburg looks forward to this fun annual event, I know I do. This year’s Fair looks a lot different like…

Kochkäse: Cooked Cheese

By Mark Wieser Kochkäse or cooked cheese was quite a process when I was young. There were many steps involved that would be prohibitive today or frowned upon by those in authority. Firstly, few of us have a cow or even access to fresh whole milk. Clabber itself is a word that is in few…

Icebox Ice Cream

By Mark Wieser OK, you probably don’t have an ice box, but I still do even if you think it’s a refrigerator. I have never gotten used to calling them that. Actually, a real ice box was before my time, but not too long before. As a boy I discovered our old ice box in…