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Human Stories

Quarantine Stories: David and Lukas, Germany

Even though the lockdown situation is different in every European country, we all had to adapt our habits of eating, cooking and grocery shopping. Several people across Europe have opened up about the way their lives have changed during these strange times.

David (28) and Lukas (29), Berlin, Germany

"We live in a flatshare in Berlin together with Laura (30). The German government has recommended not to leave the house so much, so we go outside to buy groceries or take a walk in the park nearby. Only grocery shops are open, the rest stays closed. 

We all do the shopping and on average go once a day–what else is there to do? Before the pandemic, we actually went less often, maybe once every three days. We try not to hoard too much food, except for one particular time: we had been looking for flour in three different stores, and when we finally found it, we decided to stock up and bought three packages. Together with flour, there are still some ingredients that are almost never available, like yeast, and others that are becoming harder to find, like ginger. 

Our cooking habits have not changed much. Although we are not vegetarian, we mainly try to cook vegetarian at home and on average, we prepare a fresh meal once every two days. All of us cook, and we cook more than we normally would since it is not possible to go outside and eat in restaurants anymore. We have noticed that we do experiment more. We have started to ferment different things like kimchi and ginger beer. We also baked a lot of different cakes, and made pesto and white bean spread. Once, we also cooked Knödel with cabbage rolls (a German dish with dumplings) and Vietnamese Pho, which took a while to prepare. The Knödel also took a while to cook and turned out really well – it tasted just like our German grandmas’ version.

Our go-to-meals range from black lentil stews with tomatoes, zucchini and coriander with tahini on top, curry with a lot of veggies and potatoes, to veggie burritos with red beans and guacamole – in our eyes, a very balanced and healthy diet. I [David] am from Tel Aviv, so there is definitely an influence on our cooking as well. I would normally eat fish as a source of protein since I usually go to the gym and feel like I need that afterwards. But now I have mostly stopped doing sports and don’t have such a high need for protein. So, in general, we all eat less meat and fish than before, since we also don’t get it at the canteen, restaurants or our families’ places anymore. Food waste (which we already tried to avoid) is less as well, as we eat more at home and also tend to clean the fridge more often.”

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