Helmut Schmidt culinary

Kunst & Kochwerk is a cultural series that I have conducted over several years and at various venues. The idea behind it is to interpret an exhibition or even a single work of art in a culinary way. One of my favorite interpretations was a traveling exhibition that made a guest appearance at the Museum Villa Erckens in Grevenbroich at the end of 2018 to mark the 100th birthday of former Chancellor Helmut Schmidt. The exhibition was entitled “Helmut Schmidt in Major and Minor” – caricatures from the political life of the former chancellor. After a guided tour through the exhibition, which shows Schmidt as a multifaceted personality, the visitors of the event were served a three-course menu. What do rutabaga, a stew and a children’s birthday cake have to do with Helmut Schmidt?

Turnip – smoked salt – beet

My menu for the exhibition on January 15, 2019

Two kinds of spread with homemade sourdough bread+ beet mash = red like the SPD + rutabaga spread with smoked salt. The rutabaga was about 100 years ago in the war winter 1916/17 almost the only remaining food for the German population. The occasion for the exhibition was the 100th birthday of Helmut Schmidt. After the war years, rutabaga did not get rid of its image as a musty emergency food for many decades. It fell into culinary oblivion. Only in recent years have old vegetables been reinterpreted, led by a young generation of top chefs. My turnip spread is seasoned with smoked salt = Schmidt the Chainsmoker. Other ingredients include walnut oil, grated horseradish and ground orange peel.

Sauerkraut stew

Helmut Schmidt, it is said, was a friend of simple cuisine. He appreciated a hearty stew very much. Therefore, a sauerkraut stew was served as the main course. This interpretation was then not to be quite so simple. The basic seasoning for this sauerkraut stew is miso – the Japanese seasoning paste used to create the 5th flavor dimension, umami.

Cold snout

Cold snout with compote of beet stems and fleur de sel. The dessert also makes two connections to the caricature exhibition on the man and politician Helmut Schmidt. His often brash way of speaking was often referred to as Schmidt Schnauze . On the dessert plates therefore a cold snout. However, I refined the popular children’s birthday cake. The cocoa mass was spiced with Fleur de Sel from the Guerande = Helmut Schmidt had a close friendship with the French President Valery Giscard d’Estaing. The exhibition showed several cartoons about this. The beet stalks boiled down in Grand Manier and the pomegranate seeds are then again colorful winks in the direction of the SPD.

Cold snout de luxe

The children’s birthday cake classic jazzed up and refined with orange zest and fleur de sel.

Melt the coconut oil in a saucepan at low temperature. Mix together the powdered sugar, cocoa powder and orange zest. In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs until foamy. Gradually stir in the mixture of powdered sugar, orange zest and cocoa. Then stir in the liquid coconut oil in small sips. Line a large or two small loaf pans with plastic wrap. Spread a layer of cocoa mixture on the bottom. Sprinkle the fleur de sel on this top layer only.

Then the first layer of butter cookies. If necessary, cut them to fit beforehand. Repeat this process until the cocoa mass is used up. Finally, add another layer of butter cookies. Place in the refrigerator overnight to harden. Turn out and remove foil. Cut into cubes with a sharp knife, for example.

:250 g organic coconut oil180
g powdered sugar80
g cocoa powder3
eggsButter cookies
, ¾ of a package of two sticks½
tsp Fleur de Sel de Guerande3
tsp ground organic orange


Where did the name come from?
The Cold Snout is a cookie cake whose surface resembles the cold snout of a dog.

Recipe refined with French accent “fleur de sel”. On the occasion of Art & Culinary Work in the Museum. Helmut Schmidt also called Schmidt Schnauze and in allusion to his politically close relationship with France.

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