The cook Gretel eats the meal of her master and his guest, but gets away with it by her cleverness.
There was a cook, her name was Gretel, who wore shoes with red heels, and when she went out in them, she turned to and fro, was quite cheerful, and thought 'you are a beautiful girl. And when she came home, she drank a sip of wine out of happiness, and because wine also makes you want to eat, she tried the best she had cooked until she was full, and said, "The cook must know how food tastes.
It happened that the master once said to her, 'Gretel, a guest is coming tonight, prepare two chickens for me,' 'I'll do it, master,' Grethel answered. Now Grethel stabbed the chickens, scalded them, plucked them, put them on the spit, and brought them, as evening approached, to the fire, so that they should roast. The chickens were beginning to turn brown and gahr, but the guest had not yet arrived. Then Gretel called to the master, 'If the guest does not come, I must put the chickens from the fire, but it is a pity and a shame if they are not eaten soon, when they are best in juice. Said the lord, 'I will run and fetch the guest myself. When the master had turned his back, Gretel put the spit with the chickens aside and thought, 'standing there by the fire for so long makes you sweat and thirsty, who knows when they will come! She ran down, put on a jug, said 'God bless you, Grethel,' and took a good draught. The wine hangs on each other,' he continued, 'and is not good to break off,' and took another serious draught. Now he went and put the chickens back over the fire, spread them with butter and drove the spit around merrily.
But because the roast smelled so good, Grethel thought 'something could be missing, it must be tried!' licked with her finger and said 'ei, what are the chickens so good! it is a sin and a shame that one does not eat them immediately! He ran to the window to see if the master with the guest was not yet coming, but no one saw him: he went back to the chickens, thought "one wing is burning, it's better I eat it away. So he cut it off and ate it, and it tasted good to him: and when he was done with it, he thought 'the other one must come down too, otherwise the master will notice that something is missing'. When the two wings were eaten, he went again and looked for the master, but did not see him. Who knows,' it occurred to him, 'they might not be coming at all, and have gone somewhere. Then he said, "Hey, Grethel, be in good spirits, the one thing that has been attacked, have another fresh drink, and eat it up completely, when it is all over, you will have peace: why should the good gift of God perish? So he ran down to the cellar once more, made an honorable drink, and ate the one chicken with all joy. When the one chicken was down, and the master still did not come, Grethel looked at the other, and said 'where the one is, there must also be the other, the two belong together: what is right for the one is right for the other; I think if I take another drink, it should not hurt me. So he took another hearty drink, and let the second chicken run to the other again.
As the meal was in its best state, the master came along and called out, 'Hurry up, Grethel, the guest will be along in a minute.' 'Yes, sir, I'll get it ready,' Grethel answered. Meanwhile, the master saw if the table was well set, took the large knife with which he wanted to cut the chickens, and sharpened it in the hallway. Then the guest came and knocked politely on the front door. Gretel ran and looked to see who was there, and when she saw the guest, she held her finger to her mouth and said, "Quiet! Quiet! Make haste that you come away again, if my master catches you, you will be unhappy; he has invited you to dinner, but he has nothing else in mind than to cut off both your ears.
Just listen how he sharpens the knife.' The guest heard the sharpening and hurried what he could down the stairs again. Grethel was not lazy, ran screaming to the master and shouted 'you have invited a beautiful guest!' 'Why, Gretel, what do you mean by that?' 'Yes,' she said, 'he has taken both chickens, which I was about to serve, from the dish and ran away with them. That is a fine way!' said the master, and he was sorry for the beautiful chickens, 'if he had at least left me the one, so that I would have had something to eat. He called after him to stay, but the guest pretended not to hear. Then he ran after him, the knife still in his hand, and shouted 'only one! only one!' and meant that the guest should leave him only one chicken, and not take both of them: but the guest meant nothing else than that he should give away one of his ears, and ran as if fire were burning under him, so that he might bring them both home.