Monday, December 19, 2011

Now they have whole displays of it

So today Gwenyth and I went to Simmering to complete the Christmas cooking shopping and were almost completely successful. We found everything we needed – with the help of Merisi who I contacted twice by telephone for help with the Austrian names  of substances we needed.

We discovered – for example – that Austrians do not have self-raising flour. The flour has to fend for itself – just like Auslanders.  You can assist it with baking powder and this comes in a tiny packet and is called – unsurprisingly - bakpulver.

The only thing we could not find was molasses or treacle and I was going to ask the same lady I had asked last week about kokos-flocken but she was not there. She was probably on stress leave after our previous interaction.

And would you believe it – today they had a whole gigantic display of kokos-flocken two metres high and two metres wide – and Gwenyth even found passionfruit – but she said they looked a bit weird. 

So we asked Merisi and she pointed out the bleeding obvious that Bobby’s would have stuff like molasses so we went there on the way home and were able to buy golden syrup and bicarbonate of soda.

Gwenyth has now started cooking and has already made Anzac biscuits. The first batches did not come out as planned because she had trouble fathoming  the oven but she finally got the hang of it.

Incidentally – as one of my commenters has pointed out – I could not possibly get the Christmas tree out of the apartment intact. In fact our trees are always so big that it is impossible to get them out to take them to a ‘dead tree’ place unless I cut them up – and then it would take me 20 trips and make a colossal mess.


  1. i miss those decorations.
    and i had a similar situation with that bakpulver business. the first time i bought something else, and when i cut into my cake at the table, it all ended up liquid in the center, what a yummy surprise. nothign like raw cake batter to impress guests.

  2. For once my biscuits turned out perfect today, I set the timer a couple minutes earlier than the package instructed and messed up the timer once while doing the sausage, and was ridiculed slightly by my son for messing up the timer, I guess it just takes all those steps for me to get perfect biscuits. I told him I will try a repeat performance tomorrow. His mother was s'pposed to cook, but I let her sleep.

  3. the joys of fathoming out ingredients! (i did the same thing with self-raising flour. i just couldn't work out why there wasn't a translation... and then realised it was because it doesn't exist!)
    love the photos. pretty lights!

  4. Love the photos. Ooooh Anzac biscuits - they would have to be my favourite. I don't buy or make them because I would eat the whole lot !!!! Enjoy !

  5. Der Graben?

    Vienna is such a stunning city; especially this time of year.

    And, what the hell is treacle?

  6. tndw: You could haves said it was a special Austrian embassy delicacy.

    esbboston: ah but what kind of biscuits were they?

    angiv: well it took me three years to work out. Thanks about the pics.

    Me: They are really delicious.

    smedette: yes Graben and Karntnerstrasse. Treacle is brown sticky stuff. Used for making Anzac biscuits.

  7. Oh, the vagaries of living in Vienna! :-)

    Bicarbonate of Soda, yes, that's another Viennese peculiarity! Must not entrust too many grams of it to the populace! It took me years to discover that it is sold here, albeit in small doses, 0.493835467 ounces in tiny little paper envelopes ("Feinstes Natron" - 14g). They slip them to you at the baking ingredients aisle. Don't accidentally swallow it, at least not before you pay for it (if you bubble up after the cash register they won't mind). Need I point out that those 0.almostnothing oz cost more than a whole pound south of the border, in Italy?

  8. Apropos those gigantic display of kokos-flocken:
    This confirms my suspicion that The Store Manager in the Sky implants a chip as soon as you start getting pesky - i.e. dare to ask questions - in Viennese supermarkets. For instance, when I moved here, I spent more time searching for cranberries, pecan nuts and sweet potatoes than actually cooking and eating the Thanksgiving meal (3 days of leaftovers included). The following year (year 2 A.DC), each and every place I had combed through in vain the year before, all of a sudden had piles of those previously elusive groceries! Not that it keeps them from asking apothecary prices for pecan nuts (my children get immediately sent to their rooms if they dare to leave so much as a crumb of pecan pie on their plate).

  9. My biscuits were Pillsbury Grands Flaky Layers Original, 8 Big Biscuits, bar code 0-182600-3, expiration date 15-Jan-2012

    I read the wikipedia article about your Anzac biscuits, and they are almost like the cookies we had as children, they just need cocoa.

    WordVeri of the Day: abend - something guten to put after guten

  10. HI Badger, G + Cate

    Just reporting in from a very snowy Chamonix where I have been working hard to bring the GANNT chart back on line for March. A very pleasant day skiing and apres ski:) with the American banker. All completely futile of course as we live about as far apart in the world as we possibly can. Hope Cate made it safely home from Llama's bedroom on a Sunday morning (or some similarly dangerous place). Sounds like celebrations are hotting up in Vienna. Llamaxx