When the sun is shining and the weather is warm what could be better than a picnic? A Carinthian picnic of course! Here are 10 things to pack for the perfect picnic featuring some Carinthian specialities and Austrian favorites.
Hauswürstel or “house sausages” are great for a hearty picnic snack. These tasty sausages are spiced, smoked, and dried in the Carinthian mountain air. They are full of flavor and a must for any meat-lover’s picnic.
Austrians certainly enjoy Aufstrich (spreads) and have lots of recipes to choose from. Try the spiced classic Liptauer spread on a piece of dark bread or try your hand at making Carinthian Sasaka. Be warned that sasaka is a meaty spread - it is a combination of smoked bacon, lard, onion, and spices.
Dark bread provides a substantial basis for any Carinthian snack. Pick out a healthy loaf of bread from the farmer’s market and ask for a “jause portion” to get just enough for your picnic.
With its strong taste and, ahem, interesting smell, Carinthian Glunder cheese is not for everyone. However, this local cheese is a treasured ingredient in the traditional Carinthian “brettljause”. Pair this rye flavored cheese spread with some smoked meat for a filling snack.
It’s Carinthian bacon - salted, spiced, and ripened for a smokey flavor that reminds us of the Carinthian countryside. Pile it high on a sandwich or eat it plain to get the full flavor.
Spending time outside with a cold beer is a favorite summertime activity for Austrians. Opt for cans instead of bottles for easy travel and clean-up during your picnic. Looking for a low-alcohol alternative? Mix equal parts beer with Almdudler or lemonade for a refreshing Radler.
Not a beer drinker? Lucky for you, there are plenty of Austrian wines to choose from. Bring a bottle of Grüner Veltliner or Riesling along on your picnic. Once August 1st arrives, it is possible to buy Sturm, a fruity young wine that is perfect for summer.
Bergkäse or “mountain cheese” is a cheese that is reminiscent of the Alps where it is made. It is a perfect cheese to pair with all kinds of meats and sandwich fixings. It is one of Carinthia’s top cheeses for picnics.
Hearing the words “sausage salad” doesn’t exactly conjure up thoughts of a summer picnic, but the wurstsalat is a good addition to include. A combination of luncheon sausage, hard cheese, onion, tomato, and bell pepper are mixed with a simple vinaigrette and served with crusty bread for a light meal. Some people add pickles, some people add hard boiled eggs - how you prepare it is up to you.
Every picnic deserves a happy ending and these wafer biscuits are sure to end your picnic on a “sweet” note. Unwrapping the pink packaging is like unwrapping a present. Enjoy it!
Make the most of the fine summer weather by spending it outdoors. What are you waiting for? Pack your picnic basket, grab some friends, and go outside.
Chelsea Navarro is an American expat from California, USA.
She has lived in Villach with her partner and dog since February, 2016. She enjoys exploring the Austrian wilderness, drinking Villacher beer and traveling around Europe.