Always following the water, or rather the Weser. The Middle Weser region stretches along the river from Achim in the north to the Mittelland Canal in the south. On your way through the agricultural region you will find numerous mills, farm stores and cafés. "Fresh to the table" is the program at the Mittelweser farmers. Thus, in addition to a well-stocked store, many farms also have a café where delicacies such as waffles with Bickbeern, coffee from their own roasting or fresh Nienburg asparagus are served. Here we introduce you to five culinary specialties of the Mittelweser region:
Already at dawn, the fields around Brokeloh are buzzing and humming. Fat bumblebees fly low over the flowering meadows, and bees circle in the blueberry bushes in search of blossoms. Soon, the insects are replaced by harvesters and visitors, who carefully pick their way through the 22.5-acre cultivated area. Only the deep blue berries go into the yellow harvest baskets; the unripe fruits are still allowed to hang.
Lower Saxony is Germany's largest producer of blueberries, with around 2,000 hectares under cultivation. In the Mittelweser region alone, millions of blueberries, known here as bickbeern, ripen from June to September. The name comes from bicken, Low German for bend over, as you have to bend over to reach the berries.
Summer is the most intense time on Sylke Herse's Bickbeernhof. Then the parking lot fills up already in the morning. Some visitors just want to quickly buy a jam for breakfast in the farm store, others come to pick. The flow of visitors remains constant until the evening. In addition to the self-picking fields, there is also a large farm café with a terrace that could accommodate a whole party. The smell of fresh waffles emanates from the kitchen, but there are also savory dishes on offer, such as venison sausage with dried bickberries.
A visit to the farm store is a must. Here, in addition to Bickbeern honey, you can also buy organic berry compote and fruit mulled wine.
By train and bus comfortably to Brokeloh: Plan arrival.
While the café guests relax over coffee and fresh rolls, the market stalls across the street are already bustling with activity. At one stall, a handful of crunchy runner beans are being weighed and packed, at another a child is sticking its nose into a colorful bouquet of flowers, and in the bakery cart the last Nienburg bear paw is just disappearing into a paper bag.
For over 200 years, the Lange Straße in Nienburg's historic old town has regularly been transformed into a colorful promenade. That's when more than 60 regional and local traders set up their stalls, oil their vocal chords and get going. In addition to fruit and vegetables, animal products, baked goods and regional specialties, flowers and plants are also on offer - and particularly successfully.
In 2008, the market was named the most beautiful weekly market in Europe. In addition to the variety of products on offer, the quality and presentation of the goods were also worthy of the award. You can see for yourself every Wednesday and Saturday, from 8 am to 1 pm.
More info about the Nienburg weekly market can be found at here.
"I helped build this asparagus!" The man who says this is standing with his daughter in front of the 4.5-meter-high wooden sculpture in the Lower Saxony Asparagus Museum. In 2009, the graduating class of the Realschule Nienburg spent almost a year carving the 900-kilogram delicacy. In 2010, it was unveiled and shortly thereafter declared the largest wooden asparagus sculpture in the world.
Every fifth German asparagus grows in Lower Saxony. Long asparagus fields dominate the landscape from March until well into the fall. The 750-kilometer-long Lower Saxony Asparagus Route connects the growing areas, which also include the Mittelweser region.
The well-known "Nienburg asparagus" there has been marketed under its own seal of quality for over 20 years. Many producers sell it directly from the farm, some offer it as a meal. For example the Asparagus and strawberry farm Nuttelmann in Steyerberg. From mid-April to the end of June, the farm hosts thousands of people to participate in the asparagus dinner.
The importance of asparagus for the region and the state can be seen in the Asparagus Museum in Nienburg. On 150 square meters, you can learn everything you need to know about the seasonal vegetable, from cultivation to distribution. And if you arrive on the right day, you can take part in the Nienburg Asparagus Festival and witness the election of the asparagus queen.
The smell of fresh popcorn fills the historic half-timbered warehouse. In addition to the loud whirring of the machines, it now also sounds like popcorn, although it is the coffee beans that are bouncing against the coffee roaster's glass. It is the so-called "first crack," a magical moment in coffee roasting. During the roasting process, which lasts just 18 minutes, the initially green coffee bean takes on a dark brown color and develops over 800 different aromas.
The coffee roastery and cocoa factory Catucho is located in a pretty clinker brick building in Bücken. The family business was founded in 2006 by Ulrike Eckhardt and is now run by her daughters Laura and Elena. Names like "Pacha Mama," "Indian Monsoon" and "Chicas Coffee" stand out from the high shelves of the farm store. All coffees are purchased directly from the growers, refined here, bottled and distributed under their own design. During a visit, you can also taste the coffee and chocolates. Exciting background information and great advice are available free of charge.
For those who want to learn more about the fine beverage, Elena and Laura offer coffee seminars and roasting demonstrations.
By train and bus comfortably to Bücken: Plan arrival.
Visitors stand in front of the large glass windows. They are watching an employee of the farm who is currently working on the large pasteurizing machine. He needs just under 10 liters of milk to produce one kilo of cheese. A Bünkemühler semi-hard cheese, for example, which is sold in the farm store after six weeks of ripening.
Bünkemühle farm is a traditional family business. It has been run by the Derboven family for 60 years and has been constantly expanded. The initial milk production was joined by cattle breeding and finally cheese production.
The cheese is sold, along with regional products such as mustard, jam and coffee, in the farm store and online.
From afar, the courtyard looks like a movie set. Green deciduous trees line the long access road. Cows graze in a pasture framed by a white board fence. And at the end of the driveway are idyllic red and white farm buildings. As a visitor, you really want to explore the farm, and you can. On weekends, for example, when the stables are open and the calves can be stroked or you can watch the cheese being made.
Added bonus: On weekends, the farm café is also open, serving homemade pies, cakes and cheese.
By train and bus comfortably to Warpe: Plan arrival.
Cover photo: Fresh and regional: Farm stores sell delicious products directly from the producer © adobestock.com/ industrieblick
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