German Currywurst, A History Of The Cross-Cultural Sausage Dish

Currywurst, a beloved German fast food delicacy, is a mouthwatering dish that tantalises taste buds with its unique combination of flavours. At its core, Currywurst is a sausage, typically bratwurst or bockwurst, sliced and generously smothered in a rich, spiced curry ketchup sauce. The sauce's blend of tangy tomato base and aromatic curry powder creates a harmonious balance of sweet, savoury, and mildly spicy notes. Often served with a side of crispy fries or a bread roll, this iconic street food captures the essence of Germany's culinary culture. A symbol of post-war Berlin's resilience, Currywurst continues to delight locals and visitors alike with its simple yet delicious allure.

Currywurst owes its origin to the ingenuity of Herta Heuwer, who played a pivotal role in its creation. In the turmoil of post-World War II Berlin, where food was scarce, Heuwer owned a snack kiosk in Charlottenburg. In 1949, she decided to experiment with available ingredients to craft a delectable treat. Legend has it that she mixed ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and curry powder she acquired from British soldiers stationed in the city. This sauce was then poured over grilled sausages, and Currywurst was born.

The dish's affordability and delightful taste resonated with Berliners, soon turning Heuwer's kiosk into a popular spot. As street food culture burgeoned, Currywurst became an enduring symbol of Berlin's post-war revival and cultural identity. Today, this culinary innovation stands as a testament to the resourcefulness and resilience of the city's inhabitants during challenging times.

Iconic Berlin Street Food

Currywurst holds a prominent position in Berlin's vibrant street food culture. As an iconic Berlin street food, it reflects the city's history and culture. Rooted in post-World War II Berlin, Currywurst symbolises the city's resilience during difficult times. Its availability, affordability, and unique blend of flavours have made it a beloved local delicacy. This simple yet delicious dish has become an integral part of Berlin's culinary landscape, capturing the essence of the city's past and present, while continuing to be cherished by locals and visitors alike.

Currywurst Accompaniments

Currywurst is often accompanied by two popular side dishes that complement its flavours: fries (Pommes Frites) and bread rolls. The crispy and golden Pommes Frites add a satisfying crunch and are perfect for dipping into the curry ketchup. On the other hand, soft and fresh bread rolls provide a hearty option for those who prefer a more traditional pairing. These accompaniments not only enhance the overall dining experience but also showcase the versatility of Currywurst as a delicious and fulfilling street food delight.

From its humble beginnings in post-war Berlin, Currywurst has risen to become a cherished German culinary icon. Its journey from a creative concoction by Herta Heuwer to a staple of street food culture reflects the resourcefulness and resilience of the city's history. Today, Currywurst's enduring legacy is evident in its continued popularity, both in Germany and beyond. It has become synonymous with German food culture, embodying the nation's love for hearty, flavourful, and accessible street food. Currywurst's rich history and enduring appeal make it a symbol of culinary innovation and cultural identity.

Recipe For Currywurst

                                              Video Credits: That's Tasty/YouTube


4 bratwurst or bockwurst sausages

1 cup ketchup

2 tablespoons curry powder

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 small onion, finely chopped (optional, for garnish)

1 tablespoon butter (optional, for garnish)

Curry powder (for garnish)

4 bread rolls or a side of Pommes Frites (fries) for serving


Prepare the Curry Ketchup Sauce:

In a small saucepan, combine the ketchup, curry powder, and Worcestershire sauce.

Stir well to ensure the curry powder is fully incorporated.

Cook the sauce over low heat for 5-7 minutes, allowing the flavours to meld together.

Remove from heat and set the curry ketchup sauce aside.

Grill or Fry the Sausages:

If grilling, preheat your grill to medium-high heat. Grill the sausages for about 8-10 minutes, turning occasionally until they are cooked through and have grill marks.

If frying, heat the vegetable oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the sausages and cook for 8-10 minutes, turning occasionally until they are cooked through and nicely browned.

Slice the Sausages:

Once the sausages are cooked, remove them from the grill or skillet.

Cut the sausages into bite-sized slices, about 1-inch thick.

Combine the Sausages and Curry Ketchup Sauce:

Place the sliced sausages in a bowl or on a serving dish.

Pour the prepared curry ketchup sauce over the sausages, ensuring they are well coated.

Garnish and Serve:

Optionally, you can prepare a quick garnish: In a separate small pan, melt the butter and sauté the finely chopped onions until they become translucent and slightly caramelised.

Place the sausages with curry ketchup on a plate.

Drizzle the sautéed onions on top (if using) and sprinkle some additional curry powder for extra flavour.

Serve the Currywurst with bread rolls on the side or a portion of Pommes Frites.

Enjoy your homemade Currywurst, a delicious and authentic taste of German street food!