European Flavors from Llanquihue Lake Basin
Llanquihue Lake is the colonizers’ zone. Every ingredient tells us about the efforts made by German immigrants who, by the mid 1800's, started coming to these lands and mixing their European recipes with the crops they would grow with great difficulty. Today it is almost impossible to imagine Llanquihue Lake disconnected from a cup of hot cocoa and a “just baked” kuchen. Every family and town has its own formula to prepare the famous kuchen whose recipes have passed over from one family to another, from generation to generation. German baking flavors are mixed with local fruit such as myrtle, raspberry, blackberry, redcurrant, elder, morello cherry, cherry, walnuts, poppy, plum, apple and chestnut. The list of fruits is not over at all, despite the aforementioned; on the contrary: new species are continuously being incorporated in order to find the perfect flavor. Kuchens, cakes, Berlin doughnuts and just baked bread with homemade jelly, sausages and ham are part of the succulent “German Tea time” you may try these in any town, and even by the border of the Interlake Routes (especially between Puerto Varas, Ensenada and Frutillar, Puerto Octay).
Talking about cuisine and ingredients, Llanquihue Lakes basin makes everyone happy: German meat loaf (served with mashed apples and roasted potatoes), cooked purple cabbage, wild hog meat and lamb testicles, stuffed goose or duck served with the typical klösse (boiled dough balls) or spätzle (noodles) make up just a part of the homemade recipes you can find at different gastronomic establishments in Puerto Varas, Llanquihue, Frutillar, Puerto Octay amongst others.
Sausage and charcuterie production is still one of the local stars. Old recipe-made sausages are still available for purchase, from which Llanquihue and New Braunau’s are remarkable local cold meat trademarks. Longaniza sausages, smoked cold meat, smallsized pork sausages, paté and all kinds of meat, even previously marinated, are some of the products you may find even at family enterprisers’ small factories.
And how can we forget beer? This area counts on a great variety of handcrafted brewers who get together to offer their Delicious drinks at parties such as Llanquihue’s Bierfest and PrositFest in Puerto Varas, both events taking place during January.