Changing our meal times

1 May 2013
Over the past year or so Hanno and I have been slowly changing our eating habits. We started by having smaller servings because our appetites have changed. This has worked well for us and we've been satisfied with the meals we're eating. Now we've moved on to a change in when the main meal is served. We're now eating it at lunchtime.

Hanno is quite used to this style of eating. In Germany that is how they serve food, many places of work serve a hot meal at lunchtime and in the evenings appetites are satisfied with abend brot - or evening bread. I have fond memories of abend brot when we lived in Germany. The table was always laid with knives and forks for everyone, either a plate or a small bread board each, drink - usually beer, tea or coffee and a delicious selection of cold cuts, cheeses, salads, pickles and tomatoes.

Unusually, when we have abend brot it's at midday. We're having a pot of tea with it. We didn't do that when we had our main meal in the evening because I don't sleep well if I drink tea or coffee after 4pm. As usual, I set the table for the two of us. Knives, forks, a plate for each of us, and cups for tea. In the middle of this is the main plate - a magnificent assortment of whatever I have on hand or have bought for the plate.

Abend brot can be made up of anything. The one we had the other day (above) was a combination of camembert and Swiss cheese, salami, boiled eggs, tomatoes, avocado, pickled cucumbers and onions. We had rye sourdough and black bread - the very dense German rye bread. Everyone makes their own sandwich so you can do whatever suits you. Usually in Germany, you'd have either cheese or cold cuts on one sandwich but I had Swiss cheese, salami, tomato, avocado and pickled onions on my slice, but I could only eat one and a half slices. 

Mayonaisse-based salads are also popular for abend brot. Next time we have it, I'll poach a chicken breast and we'll have chicken salad and possibly kassler instead of salami. Tuna salad or egg salad would also be great additions. It sounds like a light option but it certainly fills you up and it's great, as long as you have the makings of it, for those nights, or lunchtimes, when you don't feel like cooking.

When do you serve meals throughout the day? Have you changed how you eat recently? Our change is due to our ages but I'm guessing there are some who have changed to include more organic and local foods and some who have changed for financial reasons.