What monastery Altzella teaches about the herbal cuisine

Altzella Monastery

Altzella Monastery in Saxony

There is not much left of Altzella Monastery. At first I'm a little disappointed when we parked in the monastery parking lot Saxony arrive. In front of us I see a few houses that remind me more of a farm. I would never have thought of a monastery if I did not know that we are in the right place. However, this impression changes quickly as we walk through one of the monastery buildings that is still standing. Behind it we come into a romantic world.

 

A monastery in Saxony - Medieval Romanticism

 

We have long been fascinated by monasteries. In recent years we have visited monasteries a lot. In contrast to the monastery complexes that we know so far, the Altzella monastery is largely a ruined monastery. In any case, most of the ruins are in the forest or in the monastery park. But this is exactly what makes the monastery so charming.

 

Romantic monastery ruins
Romantic monastery ruins

 

As soon as we leave the main building, the Middle Ages cast a spell over us. Ancient tree giants provide shade in the summer heat. Narrow paths lead through the forest. Weathered stone walls protrude behind the bushes. However, it is no longer possible to see what was once in it. A dormitory of the monks? The refectory? Or a stable for the cattle? We do not know it. In any case, the ruins look like witnesses from a sunken world. A stone staircase leads under the ruins. We follow her and finally get to a wine cellar. “People still celebrate here today,” explains Koreen Vetter, who leads us through the monastery garden.

 

Only the walls are still standing
Only the walls are still standing

 

We leave the forest and turn to the large meadow below the monastery buildings that have been preserved. There is also a half-dilapidated building on it. "The Cistercian monks once used this as a camp," says Koreen. Here they sold their products to dealers. Except for the outer walls and a well-preserved gable, there is nothing left of it. A stone cross at the top of the gable testifies to the monastic past of the building. For me it is one of the most romantic buildings in the complex. I like to believe Koreen when she says that wedding couples like to say yes.

 

In the monastery garden of Altzella

We meet Koreen for a reason. Years ago, she set herself the task of cultivating the old monastery garden. But she gets up early every morning and spends an hour in the herb garden of the monastery. Then she sows weeds and looks to see which of her many herbs are ready for harvest. She has a lot of that. Rosemary, basil, oregano, marjoram are just as much as various mint varieties or lemon balm. However, she does not only know the usual culinary herbs.

 

Insect construction in the monastery garden
Insect construction in the monastery garden

 

On our way through the meadow, Koreen stoops again and again, picks an inconspicuous plant and holds it out to us. "Do you like to go hiking? You will always have a blister on your foot. Then just take the leaves of this plant on the way, rub it between your fingers and apply it to the wound. After a few minutes it doesn't hurt anymore. ”Several bushes grow on the wall of the monastery garden. Koreen walks up to it and puts the small fruits in her mouth. "Go ahead!" She laughs. "You can eat them." And indeed! What I had previously regarded as non-edible berries turned out to be a sugar-sweet delicacy. “You only need a lot of time if you want to make jam out of it,” giggles Koreen. "It takes a long time to collect the necessary amount of berries."

 

Big herbs selection
Big herbs selection

 

Gather herbs in the monastery garden

However, we do not intend to make jam. Instead, we visit the herb garden to gather herbs that we need for our lunch. We are in Altzella Monastery to learn more about the herbal cuisine. This works best when we cook with herbs ourselves.

 

When picking herbs in the monastery garden of Altzella Monastery
In the monastery garden of Altzella Monastery - Copyright Marlene Rybka of Couchabenteurer

 

Together with our blogger colleagues we cook a three-course menu in which herbs play the main role. The menu includes pea and herb waffles, a strawberry chia dessert and a mint and mango smoothie.

Koreen Vetter now not only looks after the herb garden. She also offers herbal cooking classes in the monastery kitchen. Therefore, we follow your instructions and collect herbs that we need for these dishes. Petar and I are preparing the mint-mango smoothie. For this we cut off some branches of lemon mint. The peppermint tea from fresh peppermint Koreen has prepared before we arrived. This must take some time, so that he takes on the intense aroma of mint. All other ingredients are waiting for us in the monastery kitchen.

 

Petar and Monika in the Altzella monastery garden
Petar and Monika in the Altzella monastery garden - Copyright Marlene Rybka of Couchabenteurer

 

It's fun to harvest the fresh ingredients in the garden. It also goes perfectly with the culinary experiments that we started this year with the herbs from our own herb garden. Therefore, the suggestions are just right.

Mint herb smoothie from the monastery garden

Back in the monastery kitchen, we cut the mango into bite-sized pieces. We pluck the leaves of lemon mint from the stems and cut them into strips. Together with the previously prepared peppermint tea, some sugar, a small sliced ​​orange and a cup of Greek yoghurt, we puree the mixture. Then ours Mint herbal smoothie finished.

 

Our lunch in the monastery Altzella
Lunch in the monastery Altzella

 

The others need a little longer to prepare their food. Are the recipes for their dishes a bit more complex? After a few minutes, all the food is finally ready. With a lot of fun, we cooked a herb menu for a summer lunch in a short time and then enjoyed together. With us, the mint herbal smoothie is now regularly at home.

Take a look at Petar's video. There you get an impression of the monastery ruins, the herb garden and can watch us in the herb kitchen while cooking.

 

 


Travel Arrangements

 

Altzella Monastery
Zellaer St. 10
01683 Nossen

Koreen's cousin
Tel. 0172 / 2353705 or
Tel 035241 / 817570

Getting there

By car:

  • A 14 (Leipzig - Dresden)
    Exit Nossen-Nord, follow the signs to Nossen
  • A 4 (Chemnitz - Dresden)
    Exit Siebenlehn, direction Nossen, follow the signs
  • B101 (Meißen - Freiberg)
  • B 175 (Döbeln - Nossen)
  • S36 (Waldheim - Nossen)

By public transport

  • Bus line 424 (Dresden - Altzella)
  • Bus line 418 / 412 (Meissen - Nossen) - only goes to market Nossen, then change or walk

apartments

Hotels in and around Nossen * You can also book online at booking.com.


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Find more Slow Travel Tips here.

Source: own research on site at the invitation of Schlösserland Sachsen. Our opinion, however, remains our own.

Text: © Copyright Monika Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline
Photos: © Copyright Monika Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline
Video: © Copyright Petar Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline

What monastery Altzella teaches about the herbal cuisine

24 thoughts too "What monastery Altzella teaches about the herbal cuisine"

  1. Hello you two,
    I would have liked that too! Together with other bloggers prepare a meal, I imagine that funny. The comfrey tip is great, because this plant grows with us again and again! I love ruins and in combination with herbalism and cooking (eating) that was for sure a perfect trip.
    Best regards,
    Elena

    1. Dear Elena,

      you're right. We have often cooked with other bloggers. This is always a great hike. I did not know comfrey until our visit to Altzella Monastery. But that happens to me often. About plants that I see on the lawn, I know next to nothing. That's why I always find it particularly fascinating to hike through nature with herbalists. You suddenly see them with completely different eyes.

      Best regards,
      Monika

  2. Hello you two,

    There you had a nice day. I also really liked the old trees around the monastery ruins. Do you remember how the herb was called against blisters? I'd be very interested in that.

    Best regards,
    Anne

  3. Hi monika,

    the ruins have something. Somehow mysterious right?
    Incidentally, the smoothie looks delicious too !! mmmhhh yummie!

    Best regards,

    Saskia

    1. Hello Saskia,

      thank you very much. Yes, I also think that the place has something enchanted. Only the smoothie should have been in a jar. Then he would have looked even more appetizing. He definitely tasted great.

      Best regards,
      Monika

    1. Haha, and we are already thinking about which herbs we should replenish our herbal garden next year.

  4. Oh, this monastery would be to my liking. On the one hand because of the old ruins - I love all kinds of ruins - and on the other because of the herbs. Am a total fan of naturopathy. I will try the mint herbal smoothie immediately after I buy Greek yogurt.

    Best regards,
    Michaela

    1. Dear Michaela,

      The smoothie is also available regularly this summer :) Let me know how he tastes you. And as far as herbs are concerned, we will learn more with each herbal walk, every herbal course and every herbal recipe. This is a really exciting area - and most of all - the herbs are just great! Especially when they come fresh from the garden. We are already planning what we can plant in our herb bed next year.

      Best regards,
      Monika

  5. Ruins inspire me again and again. Also in the transience can be so much charm and I always wonder what these walls have probably experienced everything.
    Best regards,
    Sabine

    1. Liebe Sabine

      that's what happens to me as well. Especially in places like this, I am always aware of how much history has influenced us to this day.

      Best regards,
      Monika

  6. The ruin could just as well be in Scotland, I think. :)

    ...... the recipe for the pea and herb waffles you probably do not come out, right? : D

    1. Dear Julia,

      yes, I thought so too. The ruins immediately reminded me of the monastery ruins in Ireland and Scotland. :) Unfortunately, I do not have the recipe for the pea and herb waffles myself.

      Best regards,
      Monika

  7. Hello you two,

    great as a medicinal herb can always be good use. I wish I knew more about all the effects. He also looks great in the garden. I would say despite sparse monastery wall, the visit was worthwhile.

    Regards

    Victoria

    1. Dear Victoria,

      definitely. We've met herbal women before. It is always interesting how much healing they know about the effects of individual herbs. Most interesting, however, was the cooking class, because we can now use these recipes at home.

      Best regards,
      Monika

    1. Dear Sandra,

      We also like this smoothie very much. This is already several times with us.

      Best regards,
      Monika

  8. Since then I have been to Saxony several times and still find wonderful corners that I would like to visit :-) Monasteries are also fascinatingly beautiful, especially the cloisters - provided that there is still some of it preserved.
    As far as the rumors were monks the best gardeners, if the herb gardens are still laid out as in ancient times, I can vividly imagine how delicious the food was at the end!
    Best regards,
    Maria

    1. Hi Mary,

      There is no cloister in Altzella Monastery anymore. The buildings are already falling for this. Instead, the scents in the monastery garden were all the more intense.

      Best regards,
      Monika

  9. The monastery is really a dream - could imagine also to marry there ;-) The idea with the herbs I find great, something I have to do soon. You do not even believe what's in the fragrant plants

    1. Dear Christine,

      that herbs are great, we also find. You discover completely new taste experiences :) And they are still healthy!

      Best regards,
      Monika

  10. This looks gorgeous and herbal walks I always think great. Because you always find out, you do not have to starve outside :-)
    And also things planted in the monastery often grow along the wayside.

    Can one actually stay in the monastery?

    Greetings Katja

    1. Dear Katja,

      it was not exactly a herbal walk. The way was too short for that. We just walked across the meadow and Koreen discovered edible herbs everywhere. The herb garden was all the more beautiful. You can not sleep in this monastery. It is no longer inhabited, but is only used for events.

      Best regards,
      Monika

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