FROM RAW HERRING TO INDONESIAN RIJSTAFEL
My travel is not solely for culinary but the tasting food is part of knowing the local culture.
Eating Fish Herring in Handelharring
I saw wagons herring or haringhandels in several places in Dam and surrounding areas. Served with chopped raw onion. At first, I was not sure how it tasted. I love to eat sushi but I was not sure the first experience of eating herring. So I ordered broodje herring, herring served with bread, pickles, and chopped onions. Not as bad as I thought after I tasted it. The man next to me ordered sliced herring and ate them with a toothpick.
Actually eating herring is by holding the tail, looking up, slowly lower the fish into the mouth while biting it. When herring caught, the fishermen clean part of it, sprinkle with salt and froze it for several days. Then sellers clean completely and prepare to be enjoyed by the customers in the cart.
Small balls of fried snack coated with breadcrumbs. Inside butterball is a mixture of beef, butter and flour to thicken and spices. Dutch people favorite snacks combined with beer. Almost every cafe, bar, and restaurant have this on their menu.
Tiny pancakes made from buckwheat flour and yeast. Served with butter and powdered sugar. Sometimes sellers add with other toppings such as whipped cream, syrup or strawberries.
The waffles hard as cookies and sticky. Two layers of thin waffle stuffed with sticky syrup. A bakery in the late 18th century used leftover ingredients such as bread crumbs and syrup. I bought a couple of small packages for edible souvenirs from the Albert Cuyp Street Market.
Thicker than the size of the usual fries. The difference between regular fries and sweet potato fries Dutch version is wide range-topping. Mayonnaise, ketchup, curry, peanut sauce and much more. Sometimes I saw the seller also combined with chopped raw onion.
Many sellers of fried fries but the most famous is the seller in Dam called Vlaams Friteshuis Vleminckx. Similar to the fries that we bought in Brussels. Seller offers 25 different kinds of toppings of mayonnaise, applesauce, chopped raw onions, peanut sauce to sambal (mixed spicy chili from Indonesia).
Amsterdam is not only famous for its food and snacks originally from The Netherlands, but also from other continents. One of the best and my favorites are the soup dumplings served with soy sauce and chopped chili. Delicious!!.
Almost every time after the completion of the church service on Sunday, we walked to one of the Chinese restaurants in Nieuwmarkt near Red Light District. I totally forgot the name of the restaurant that has the most delicious wonton soup.
Wonton soup sold by small or large portion. Usually, we ordered a large serving bowl and then shared with small bowls. We only ordered wonton soup without the noodles. It’s quite filling. Other dishes at the restaurant almost similar to other Chinese cuisines from the other restaurants. The only addictive dish was the wonton soup.
de taart van m’n tante
It means ‘my aunt’s cake’ in English. The shop only served desserts, a superb rest stop for a cup of tea and a cake. My friend took me here after a shopping spree at Albert Cuyp street market. I fascinated with the cute and bright colors decorations. Even the cake has colorful decoration. We stayed as long as possible, especially when the weather got windy and rainy.
Indonesian cuisine also has a strong influence on the cuisine of Amsterdam. The rijstaffel (rice table) is a variety of dishes from all over Indonesia served with small plates. When I worked as an event planner in Bali, I offered these kind of menu for clients. Tasteful food presentation from all over Indonesia.
This kind of dish that is not common in restaurants either in Bali or Indonesia. In the past, Indonesia introduced to colonial through a variety of foods from all over the archipelago. This tradition never dies.
There are different types of food:
- Rendang – beef with thick and sweet sauce (cooked with coconut milk)
- Telur balado – hard Hard-boiled eggs sauteed in thick chili sauce
- Krupuk udang – shrimp crackers
- Cah sayur – mixed fried vegetable
- Kentang goreng – sautéed shredded potatoes
- Serundeng – sautéed shredded coconut
- Nasi putih – white rice
- Satay – meat (pork or chicken or beef) with spices and soy sauce roasted on charcoal served with peanut sauce
- Pisang goreng – Banana fritters
Dishes served on small plates at the top of the food warmers. Different experienced for me as an Indonesian. Delicious dinner with family and friends.
With another note, there are still many Indonesian restaurants in Amsterdam. I tried several dishes from different restaurants and I love all. The owners are generations of families from all over Indonesia who moved to Amsterdam many years ago.
This post is also available in: Indonesian