“OMG! Have you tried that fab new Dutch restaurant downtown! WOW! The flavors are so exotic, and unfamiliar!”
Said no one.
To be clear: I love Amsterdam. I adore Holland. I admire Dutch culture. I enjoy Dutch people…but Dutch food, as in traditional Dutch cuisine, is nothing to write home about. Besides, friends back home want to hear about the legal ganja and prostitutes…so why bore them with tales of karnemilk, new herring, and random-boiled-mashed-veggie-blob?
When I first arrived in Amsterdam to interview for my current position, I was determined to find an “authentic Dutch restaurant” and have a nice vegetarian meal. Well, as is the case in many European countries, traditional Dutch meals are largely dependent on meat as the centerpiece, and the loudest flavor in the dish (think: goulash, bangers and mash, lamb stew). So although I did find a Hollandsche restaurant in Leidseplein, I left feeling like I clearly ordered the wrong thing…and I probably should have done a quick yelp search beforehand.
I ordered the sauerkraut stamppot with cheese croquettes. Stamppots are boiled vegetables (of endless variation) that are then mashed to smithereens with little more seasoning than salt, pepper, and butter. In retrospect, De Blauwe Hollander is a great example of dutch food at a fair price.
Anyhow, I suppose that after being here for several months the cloggies way of life is starting to coddle me like a warm blanket…as I have been cookin’ up my own version of stamppots on a near weekly basis. True, they are nothing fancy or beautiful to look at, but they are perfect for nights when you would rather check out an arthouse movie/go rock climbing/stroll the canals/do your grocery shopping rather than slave over a hot stove for hours.
1 large bag of Kale, chopped finely
2 onions, diced
2 lbs potatoes, roughly chopped
1 package veggie sausage
olive oil or butter
Place kale, onion, and potato in a large pot, add water to just cover. Once water begins to boil, turn to medium heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes.
In the meantime, sauté up that yummilicious veggie sausage. I’m using some rookworst from Albert Heijn…
Drain the water from the veggie pan, and transfer veggies to a bowl suitable for mashing. Now, do the monster mash. Add the butter, oil, or earth balance, salt and pepper to taste.
“MMMMMMmmmmm I’m really feeling like some Dutch food tonight, you?”