Maultaschen. Spinach and Meat Ravioli. Again you can skip the meat but this is the traditional Swabian pasta pockets that are considered Berlin’s typical pasta favorite. According to the legend, The Cistercian monks in Maulbronn Monastery are said to have invented the Maultasche. More precisely, a lay brother named Jakob. According to the story, he unexpectedly came into possession of a piece of meat shortly before the end of Lent. “A fleeing thief had dropped his sack of loot, Jakob, right in front of his feet,” says the monastery website.

However, during Lent, the monks were forbidden to eat meat. While preparing the Maundy Thursday meal he had the saving idea: “He chopped up the meat and mixed it with the vegetables. Because he was still plagued by a guilty conscience, he hid the whole thing in small pockets made of pasta dough. In this way, he was able to hide the flesh from the eyes of God and his fellow brothers

Of course, there are others who believe the true home of the Maultasche to be China – where noodles have been made for thousands of years. After all, Chinese geologists found some 4000-year-old “spaghetti” during excavations in the Stone Age settlement of Lajia on the Yellow River.

The cradle of pasta culture was in China a long time ago so according to these historians the dumplings then reached Arabia via the Silk Road. After the occupation of Sicily by the Arabs in the 9th century, it then migrated further north. Whichever the true origin of the dish, you should try Maultaschen when in Berlin. The mouth bags (that’s the translation) contain spinach, onions, and minced meat and can also be served as soup swimming in broth. Delicious.