The 2014 Audi Festival of German Films kicked off in Sydney last night with sponsors AEG helping celebrate all things German with pretzels, sauerkraut and appliance engineering.

Electrolux Home Products Australia senior brand and trade marketing manager Sheila Walthoe said AEG was proud to sponsor the festival for the first time, now in its 13th year, and that the sponsorship was “to reinvigorate the brand as a German brand and make sure that people understand that.”

“AEG consumers have a love of food, wine, fashion, and the arts and culture. It seemed the perfect fit for us to sponsor the German film festival,” Walthoe said.

The brand will get plenty of exposure throughout the festival, which is the largest German film festival outside of Germany and spread across four Australian cities.

“It’s really bringing German culture and heritage together,” Walthoe said. “For more than a century AEG has been a leader in German engineering. The AEG design philosophy ‘perfekt in form und funktion’ really brings together what AEG is about… perfection in engineering and also in aesthetic design.”

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Founded in Berlin in 1883, AEG is owned globally and distributed locally by Swedish company Electrolux.

Before sitting down to watch the delightful film Banklady, the true story of West Germany’s first female bank robber, guests were treated to a cooking demonstration by AEG chef Lauren DiMarco using the AEG induction cooktop and ProCombi Steam Oven.

“Smart ovens are great for any user, and much like your smart phone, it changes your whole life,” DiMarco told the crowd. “ You can get your oven to cook without much skill from you at all and everything can be done with automatic timers and sensors which gives you greater control and perfection in the product you are going to use.”

DiMarco showed off the cooktop’s features, multitasking to answer questions and feed a hungry crowd of onlookers before the film began. Boiling a litre of water in 90 seconds (note the evenly dispersed bubbles), the advantage of safely using the cooktop for extra bench space and cooking on top of a tea towel to absorb splashes of fat and oil were just some of the benefits of induction cooking DiMarco chose to highlight.

Walthoe said that although in the industry induction cooking is nothing new, retailers must remember that consumers only change their kitchens every 10 to 15 years, meaning the technology is often still completely new to them.

AEG brand ambassador chef Mark Best, of Marque restaurant in Sydney and Pei Modern in Melbourne, was also on hand to discuss how he uses AEG kitchen appliances in his home.

“As a professional I like to think that I can push its functionality to the limits, I am very, very pleased with it,” he said.

If you haven’t decided what to cook tonight, Best shared some of his simple meals he prepares at home using AEG appliances with Appliance Retailer.

–          Grilled lamb chops, marinated in olive oil, salt, pepper, and a bit of chilli, served with a salad of wild rocket, fetta, pomegranate and broccolini tops.

–          A simple roast chicken cooked in the ProCombi Steam oven, and for “perfect roast potatoes every time” par-cook potatoes in the AEG microwave so they don’t stick, cut them up, dry them off and cook them in a pre-heated pan.

The 2014 Audi Festival of German Films is running concurrently in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra from Wednesday 26 March 2014 to Friday 11 April 2014.