„Strammer Max“

A “Strammer Max”, which can be translated as “Stalwart Max”, is a seemingly uninspired preparation of German origin that used to be quite common longer ago and can sometimes still be found on menus in old inns. However, it tastes really delicious if just a little attention is paid to it.

We always have young people in mind here and they occasionally need a snack from on-board resources. So we don’t skip this little recipe.

The main ingredients are just bread, butter, ham and egg. Large slices of sourdough bread taste best. The ham may be cooked or smoked, depending on your personal preference. Or use cheese, which also works well. A fried egg is standard, but you can also poach it.

We also recommend gherkins or other pickles, herbs (preferably chives) or finely chopped strips of crisp lettuce leaves or fresh cucumber, sour cream, curd cheese or yoghurt, mustard and a little olive oil.

This is how we like “Strammer Max”:

The first step is to make a quick dip, in our case today with 2 tbsp curd cheese, 2 tsp mustard (we had tarragon mustard in the house, hence the green colour), a pinch of chilli and 1 tsp olive oil. Add finely diced gherkins, stir and you’re done.

You may, of course, season to taste with salt, pepper and vinegar, add dill, use finely chopped lettuce – anything that adds freshness and acidity is perfect.

The bread is then dry toasted, either without fat in a pan or in a toaster, spread with butter (or the product of your choice) and topped with ham. We like to add thinly sliced gherkins or fresh cucumber to the bread.

Using the technique described here, prepare a delicate fried egg, place it on the bread and season with salt and pepper.

The dip and a generous sprinkling of finely chopped chives are added – and the humble loaf is transformed into a small meal.


And may the taste be with you.

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