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December, 2006 - Nr. 12


The Editor
Reason for the Season
Friedliche Weihnacht
Christbaum für alle
A Christmas Dream
An den Christbaum
Die Weihnachtsbäume
10th Christkindl Market Kitchener
Opera York's 10th
K-W & Beyond
Neuer Pastor...
Mozart Celebrations
Der November Vortrag
Remembrance Day in Kitchener
Martini Tanz
Carnival is Back
Dick reports...
Sybille reports
Ham Se det jehört?
Hausmann's New Film
Films Germans are watching
Deutsche Kultur...
National Ballet of Canada
Canada's Postal Elves
Private Schools in Germany
Cardiovascular Disease
Fuel Cells by VW
Mexico Honors Beckenbauer
Klinsmann Not Coaching
Blackout Baby Boom
Identity Theft
Ontario Human Rights
Ontario Benefits from Skills

Dick reports...

Dick Altermann at his computer

Cheese Fondue
at the Cheese Boutique

What better way to promote cheese than to feed it to people as they come in the door? Fantastic fondue, made from award-winning Swiss cheeses and Steam Whistle Pilsner, on either white or dark bread cubes from the Bistro & Bakery Thuet. It was served to the visitors as they entered the Cheese Boutique on the weekend of their "Beef Promotion" in combination with the promotion of "Steam Whistle" beer – which is also used in the fondue – instead of the traditional Kirsch. It was a very delectable combination.

Tasting Niagara's bestTest results at the University of California showed that wine and cheese are incompatible since cheese dulls the taste of red wine making it hard to discern the different flavours.

Delicious cheese fondue with beerSo what is the alternative? Flavourful beer, of course! The bitterness of hops, the sweetness of the malted barley and the carbonation of beer are all complimentary flavours to the salty, savoury notes of cheese – according to Janet Fletcher of the San Francisco Chronicle’s tests last year.

A busy placeThe Pristines who operate the Cheese Boutique recommend that as the cold weather approaches it is time to resurrect one of the very social dining experiences – the cheese fondue – perfect for holiday entertaining, cold weather dining or après ski. Here is a recipe that serves four guests:

  • 3 oz Steam Whistle Pilsner

  • 400 gr Swiss Gruyere, coarsely grated

  • 400 gr Vacherin Fribourgeois, coarsely grated

  • 1 oz Potato starch and 1garlic clove to rub the Fondue pot with while warming up on medium heat. Add beer – the alcohol will evaporate leaving the beer flavour. Add the entire amount of grated cheeses into the fondue pot. While CONSTANTLY stirring the pot, add the starch. Stir until cheese is completely melted with ripe liquefied consistency.

For the bread, buy the long French or Italian loafs. Slice them into ½ to 1 inch slices and cut each slice into four or six pieces. This will give you a piece with enough crust to stay on the fork when you are dipping. You can also use cured meats, roasted potatoes or vegetables for dipping. It seems that beer is a better match for cheese after all!

Aging beef for 60 daysWhat about the ‘Beef Promotion’? Well, the Cheese Boutique are aging a lot of AAA Rail Beef – especially your ‘Holiday Prime Rib Roast’ – at least 60 days, for their most discerning customers. A lot of them are top grade restaurants and hotels in Toronto that value the care and meticulousness the Cheese Boutique employs to make sure that only the best is sold to their valued gourmet customers. Your best bet: Order as soon as possible!


Gospel and Blue Grass at the Danube Swabians…

Growing family, Manuel's grandchild…plus wonderful skits entertained the crowd on the 5th of November. It was a fundraiser for the new school, the "Country Music Schoolhouse" that opened last September – by the Szauter Family - in Kettleby, Ontario. Since the area of the old school had zoning restrictions, a new venue was required. It was found in Kettleby, Ontario, with the aid of the local Anglican Minister.

Young entertainersElise Scully had brought a few of her students along who entertained with a selection of German songs.

Some of the music the grown-ups entertained with were songs such as: It’s good to see you, Wayfarin’ Stranger, When we’re gone longIngrid Szauter at the mike gone, Uncle Penn, Standing on a rock, and many more. As a special tribute to June Carter Cash – who died on the 15th of May 2003 - and Johnny Cash, who died less than three months later, they sang "Far Side Banks of Jordan".

The new "Hee Haw"

Some of the Blue Grass they entertained with was reminiscent of the old "Hee Haw" days with such unforgettable stars like Minnie Pearl, Roy Clark, Goldie Hawn, Don Harron and Buck Owens – with the particular humour that was aired for over 20 years from Nashville, Tennessee.

At the train station

The skits that were performed were funny, very funny at times and a tribute to the performers: Lorie Szauter and Elise at the train station were situation-comedy at its best, Elise and Frank Scully did "The Boy from New York" and Rachel Seilern and Chris Turma did the Dolly Parton and Porter Wagner skit again – everyone loved it the last time it was performed.


The highlight of the evening must have been Lorie Szauter asCarrie & Anna Gubasta the "Opera Singer" – the audience howled with delight.

TCounting the blessingshe "Silent Auction" brought in enough money to pay the insurance premium, so I was told. Now more funds are needed to shell out for the heat during the coming cold weather!

Great show, let’s do it again soon!


Royal Agricultural Winter Fair

Too large for my potI really went this year only to see if I cannot find Charlie Brown’s giant pumpkin. I did! And it weighed over 950 pounds – It was big enough for Charlie Brown and some of his Ribbons galorefriends to hide inside with room to spare. I did not see Charlie, though.

What I – and thousands of other visitors saw - were all those steaks on the hoof – all sizes and colours. The black and white ones were dairy cows and some were in the process of being Getting the country feelingmilked or lovingly groomed.

I overheard one of the farmers in attendance explaining to one youngster that the brown cows were for chocolate milk. I didn’t know that either!

If you wanted to see all types of farm animals, this was the place to be. Many proudly displayed the ribbons they had won – well the farmers were the proud ones. Portable milking machineObserving the animals though, I got the feeling that they didn’t really care about the ribbons but were more interested in the feed.

But not only farm animals were in evidence and if you were interested in dogs, the "IAM’s Superdog Theatre" was the place to visit for some wonderful demonstrations.

Well attended were the cooking demonstrations at the ‘Cooking School’ - or the ‘Eat And Be Healthy’ stages.

For the horse lovers there was plenty to see. The Rodeo Show with bull riding, bucking broncos and rodeo clowns. The horses also came in all colours and sizes from regal Arabians right down to the miniature ones – about the size of a German Sheppard.

Food was plenty and of all varieties, wine could be tasted, including ice-wine from the Niagara Region, ice cream was available and widely enjoyed – especially for the young visitors of the Royal. But the richest experience for me, was observing the kids, especially the ones obviously from the city and not of the ‘upper’ or even ‘middle’ crust. Some of them had never stroked a rabbit or even seen one – except on pictures. In one booth, on a huge table, some of the children were taught how to make pizza and were issued a certificate after graduation – some threw or twirled them overhead – not really a great idea – and some of the pizzas turned out Making pizzasquare - but they got a certificate anyway.

Some of the merchants realized that today’s children are tomorrow’s consumers and treated the little ones with respect. That appears to be a wise economic move, albeit a mercenary one. But this is the eventual reason for shows of this kind anyway – to make a profit. And there were many, many items offered for sale, as expected, including beautiful saddles and related products for the farmer or horse owner – and of course for other interested customers.


Christmas is on the way

A view from aboveThat was clear to see at the annual Christmas Fair at the Danube Swabian Club in Scarborough. The first thing I noticed when I entered the big hall was the wonderful smell of smoked meat and fish. Then came all the sweet stuff – including my favourite ‘Marzipan’ loafs.

Many gift ideas

Invest into the futureBut I was more interested in the multitude of items I associate with Christmas since childhood; Räuchermännchen, Nutcracker, Pyramids and all the other wood carvings and specialties. There were floral clocks and music CD’s aDelicacies for the seasonnd cassettes, Reha Enterprises - with the famous Ombra and Herbacin products was not missing George Jeweller’s fabulous array of gift items– and well visited - and the titanium pan man was there too. Regina’s Dirndls had a showroom in the Try a sample!mezzanine alongside more chocolate items, Mary Kay cosmetics and International Fur’s extensive display. Well, there was much more to see, and those of our readers who regularly attend these fairs know what I am talking about.

Ombra was there Hannelore at "Der Lesezirkel"
Ombra was there Hannelore at "Der Lesezirkel"
Rainer & Heidi of George Jewellers Chocolates for Christmas
Rainer & Heidi of George Jewellers Chocolates for Christmas
Siggi Erck's creations Nutcrackers on parade
Siggi Erck's creations Nutcrackers on parade
Andy Mora's dolls Mouth watering strudels & bretzels
Andy Mora's dolls Moutwatering strudels & bretzels

A small snack bar was set up in one of the rooms in the back where schnitzels or sausages on the bun were offered, as well as Gluehwein! Well, it’s the season to be merry and it hasn’t stopped yet.

At the Hansa Haus

Christmas carolling in the festice decorated Hansa HausMore of this festive feeling highlighted the community-carolling event at the Hansa Haus, this last Sunday. The Hansa Choir had invited the club members aWolf Schepp's welcomend the public to the annual choir entertainment with audience participation, in singing well-loved Christmas songs.


The Hansa Choir Brampton under the direction of Wolf Schepp

In order to serve the mixed audience some of the original German songs had also been translated into English. Most of them however were sung in German. Singing the lyrics

Apparently not enough since one critic complained about too much English and not enough Young potential choir members & soloistsGerman songs! Well, you cannot please everyone – but the children and most of the audience had no problem understanding the Turning the page: "Sleigh bells tinkle"messages the songs tried to convey!

Some of the songs the choir sang: Heilige Nacht, Jesu, joy of man’s desiring, Do you hear what I hear, Stille Nacht and many others.

Sorry about that, said UrsulaThe audience joined with songs such as: Oh du fröhliche, Alle Jahre wieder, Hark the Herald Angels Sing, Leise rieselt der Schnee and many, many others, equally well known and loved.

Playing "Petersburger Schlittenfahrt": Inge & Ursula Gebessler on the pianoOne of the highlights of the evening was the four-handed piano rendition of the"Petersburger Schlittenfahrt" and No choir concert without Inge Schepp"Sleighbells Tinkle" by Inge Schepp and Ursula Gebessler.

The other highlight was the vocal rendition of "Come all ye shepherds" by eight-year-old Brittnie Spierl, the granddaughter of one of the choir members. This could be a great ’coming’, voice!

Wolf Schepp introduces Brittnie
Wolf Schepp introduces Brittnie
"Come all ye shepherds"
"Come all ye shepherds"
Brittnie Spiel - 8 years old
Brittnie Spriel - 8 years old

She is also scheduled to participate at the club’s Christmas Party, on December 10th.

During the break coffee, tea and tasty bakery items were served – compliments of the Ladies Auxiliaries of the club.

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas, I remain

As always

Dick Altermann


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