Well my goodness gracious Ethel, it looks like it’s been about six weeks since I updated this blog! But that’s not for lack of cooking… I was on vacation in Amsterdam, and then recovering at home from jet lag. My husband and I have discovered that the best of Amsterdam isn’t to be found in expensive eateries (though I am sure the food there is good), but in farmer’s markets and small independently owned restaurants.
Every day (except maybe Sunday) there are at least two or three or more street markets somewhere in the city, and the range and variety and quality of food simply cannot be beat.
From a little place called Gary’s Deli in the Oud West section on Kinkerstraat – blueberry pancakes, light and fluffy.
My husband got the plain pancakes (they also make banana & walnut pancakes).
There is a very small chain of restaurants called Burgermeester. They source their beef from one breed of cattle (Blonde d’aquitaine). They don’t serve fries because the owner doesn’t like the smell of cooking oil. But they make incredible hamburgers and innovative burgers and sides not seen in the US. Below is a Merguez (spicy lamb sausage) burger with yogurt, fried onions, and sauteed red bell peppers.
A trio of mini-burgers: a Manchego (salty dry Spanish cheese) burger with pear-guava compote), a falafel burger with green peppers, green olive tapenade, and a portobello, and a lamb burger (locally raised lamb) with chorizo and Jalapenos.
Baked potatoes are usually eaten because they take up space on the plate, but the baked potato at Burgermeester is worth it all by itself. They use Dutch yellow potatoes and creme fraiche. They’re amazing.
We visited Burgermeester twice, and could have easily gone back several more times. Below is a tuna burger with Chinese broccoli and ginger mayonnaise, which resembles a tuna melt the same way a filet mignon resembles a Big Mac.
Below, the Spanish lamb burger with red onion compote.
Grilled corn and their potato salad that knocks American potato salad on its ass: potatoes with carrots, apples, basil, and more creme fraiche.
The cheese shops and many bakeries sell something just called Cheese sticks. Puff pastry baked with Parmesan cheese,
I promise you: after you have eaten cheese as it is meant to be eaten – rich full-fat cheese, young and oozing milk or so aged that salt crystals have formed – you can never go back to Kraft singles.
More on Amsterdam food in another post!