New Year’s Eve in Germany – “Silvester Traditions”

2014_SnapseedNow, 2013 is gone and past. I hope all of you made it safely into the new year. While some of you are still nursing your hangovers, I thought I’d give you a little heads up on how we spent our New Year’s Eve or “Silvester” as we call it over here in Germany.

Honestly, as an immigrated Angeleno, I’ve already adjusted to it being warm out so we decided to stay in. Nevertheless, we did take some time between all the drinking to celebrate some very German New Year’s Eve traditions.

We started our evening out by a traditional German family-style meal – “Raclette“. Some of you might already know what that is, for people who don’t, I’ll give you a quick explanation. Every participant gets one or two little pans that are put under a small table grill. You can fill your little pan to your liking with mushrooms, meat or other vegetables and cook it au gratin it with a special Raclette cheese.


Vegetables we used: Green bell peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes and onions.


Our raclette














After dinner we decided to try our luck in another, admittedly weird, tradition. We Germans like to call it “Bleigießen”. You can buy pre-made sets of spoon and small lead figurines. The lead figurines are then melted on said spoon over

a small candle or flame. Once they are liquified, we poor the hot lead into cold water. The lead, cooled into weird shapes, is taken out and interpreted according to a small booklet that accompanies set.  A stork could mean fertility, a tree means stability; you get the drill.

As the clock struck midnight, we went outside to watch the fireworks. Unfortunately, the fog prohibited us from seeing the city’s fireworks. However, as everyone can shoot rockets, we got to see all our

neighbors blow up the one’s they had bought.

All in all, our New Year’s Eve was pretty normal and uneventful but I guess that’s some of the charm of Germany. At least according to my husband. He had a blast.

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