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Any one else hosting a German exchange student? Mainly food related

(21 Posts)
yogeek Thu 12-Mar-15 10:48:32

Our very sweet girl arrived last night. She is 13. My girls are 12 and 11. We are getting by....(!) Lots of giggling. I'm English and we live in France. I'm surprized that she wants to drink fizzy water all the time and wonder if there are any other typically German things she might be missing. Obviously we want to give her French things. The school told us not to give seafood although we are by the sea. Also, to make sure we cook the meat thoroughly. Last night we had 'raclette' where you pour melted cheese on potatoes and salami etc..but she hardly ate anything. For breakfast she had one tiny cake and a glass of fizzy water!! She is as thin as pin but very tall....Any advice on things culinary and German?

GalensOyster Thu 12-Mar-15 10:52:02

IME water ain't water to Germans unless it's fizzy!
I'm surprised raclette didn't go down well.
Pasta or spatzle might be an idea?

Miltonmaid Thu 12-Mar-15 10:53:30

Fizzy water is very normal, it's how most Germans drink their water - sparkling mineral water not still. Have you asked her what she likes to eat? IME Germans like to eat things like bread, cheese and ham in the morning, and boiled eggs are popular too. I don't think the foods are really that different. Pizza is very popular with teenagers. She's probably just a bit homesick and not feeling too hungry. I wouldn't try to go German with your foods, just serve what you'd usually have. That's part of the experience.

GalensOyster Thu 12-Mar-15 10:53:57

My German family are big on breakfast - dark bread or pumpkin seed wholemeal with sliced cheese, cold cuts and fruit salads. HTH.

Rosieliveson Thu 12-Mar-15 10:58:33

Maybe you could all go to the supermarket later? I love foreign supermarkets and always did when I was younger too. You could suggest all of the girls choose some of their favourite things to eat. I think it's "lieblingsessen' The thing she looks at might give you an idea.

yogeek Thu 12-Mar-15 11:04:47

Thanks :-) We are trying to ask her what she likes but communication is a bit limited at the moment. English not allowed and I don't think she speaks much. This morning it was:

Ei? non merci
Schinken? nein
Das Mineralwasser!! Ja!
Hooray for the dictionary :-)
I am going to get some black bread and more Mineralwasser.

fourcorneredcircle Thu 12-Mar-15 11:05:53

We've had loads. Fizzy water is the only water worth drinking usually ;)
I second taking her to the supermarket and letting them choose some of their favourite things to share. Many don't eat much for the first few days - homesick and nervous. Does she take a packed lunch? Fill it up well with breads, slices cheeses, slices meats, fruit and some treats and she'll probably eat it - she'll be with her peers then and a bit more comfortable smile

yogeek Thu 12-Mar-15 11:06:31

Yes, I'll take her to the supermarket :-) Good idea Rosie, thanks.

fourcorneredcircle Thu 12-Mar-15 11:06:37

*sliced... can't type today...

RolyPolierThanThou Thu 12-Mar-15 11:07:07

Avoid french cheeses and stick to the swiss ir Dutch ones (gouda or edam). Perhaps the raclette was too strong a cheese. Im german born and dont like it.

Pizza pasta and meat two veg dishes should be fine. Meat chunks cooked in a sauce (geschnetzeltes) is common. Meat in breadcrumbs (schnitzel) with mash. Petit pain type rolls are common for breakfast with jam or with mild cheeses or mortadella or salami for lunch. Baguettes arr also popular.

yogeek Thu 12-Mar-15 11:08:51

Packed lunch tomorrow..They are going to Mont St. Michel and a cheese factory. Off to get some cheese slices now..

Messygirl Thu 12-Mar-15 11:11:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

starfish4 Thu 12-Mar-15 11:42:42

We had a French student stay last year (and I appreciate you're asking about a German one) but I would give her a certain amount of choice, ie we're having vegetables tonight, would you like salmon or chicken with it, or would you like pasta with cheese or tomato sauce.

As others have said, you could ask her what she likes or take her to the supermarket and ask her to choose a couple of things to which you can add something else to which may suit your family as well.

yogeek Thu 12-Mar-15 13:10:56

Thanks all. Just stocked up on picnic stuff and doing spaghetti tonight since she said she liked it!!

BackforGood Thu 12-Mar-15 16:19:27

We had a German Exchange student in the Autumn, and it was emphasised that they would be delighted if we served them foods they'd heard were typically English - we went for Roast Beef one day, Fish 'n'Chips from the chippie one day, a 'Full English Breakfast' (for tea) one day, and then thinks that teens the world over like - such as pizza.
Presumably in your case would have to swap for 'typically French' smile
Breakfast we put out cereals, fruit, bread, ham, cheese, and let them sort themselves with what they preferred.
We did also take him into the supermarket for us, which he was really interested in.

Eastpoint Thu 12-Mar-15 16:34:49

When my dd went to stay in Germany she was really hungry the whole time, she said they hardly ate anything. Dd is slim & not a greedy teen.

Rosieliveson Thu 12-Mar-15 21:31:20

Hope the spaghetti went down well. We had loads of students from France, Germany, Spain and even Czech Republic when I was a teen. It was great fun. Your girls are very lucky smile

yogeek Fri 13-Mar-15 11:14:04

Backforgood you are making me very nostalgic talking about those English gems :-) I do miss proper fish and chips..
Rosie - yes, I think it's lovely to see the girls really trying to communicate.

Our visitor had a mini plate of spaghetti and I feel as though we eat loads in comparison. Maybe your daughter stayed at theirs Eastpoint?!! We are pretty normal in size, just hungry people!! Tonight the school have organized a cakes and drinks get together and we'll have pizzas tonight. Thankfully my DH is back tonight, he works away in the week so he will liven things up...

BabyGanoush Fri 13-Mar-15 11:27:11

just put out lts of cold meats (ham, salami) and sliced cheese and bread out for breakfast.

Does she like to drink plain milk? A glass with lunch ? Adults in Europe often drink milk with their meals.

dinner: Meat, veg and potatoes, or pasta with creamy sauces.

big chunks of cake

heylilbunny Fri 13-Mar-15 20:06:51

We live in Germany. Germans love very fresh bread every morning - the bakeries here open at the crack of dawn. So fresh crusty rolls in the morning with slices of cheese and meat, plus they often like sliced cucumber and tomatoes in the morning.

The main meal of the day is usually lunch around noon to 1pm. She will be used to a large hot meal. The evening meal in Germany is often a light one - salad with pretzels and soup or something. Cake is frequently eaten with coffee around 3pm.

They are very into meat and potatoes and hearty, healthy veg. Can't go wrong usually with sausages either.

SiobhanRyan Tue 15-Nov-16 18:11:31

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

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