Hubby made us some Dutch pancakes, Pannenkoeken, Saturday morning. How are they different from American pancakes you ask? They are thinner than the American version and more resemble crepes. When Hubby first came here, he loved the fluffy and thick American pancakes. Now, he’s reverted back to the Dutch style. The Dutch like to eat their pancakes with all types of things baked into it. Apples, cherries, bacon and cheese are just some of the fillings you can have in your pancake in Holland, a country full of pancake restaurants. I had some blueberries lying around so I just smashed some onto my pancake. We purchased the pancake mix from Dutch Delight in Petaluma, CA. A very sweet Dutch couple runs Dutch Delight from their home. Hubby and I drove over there to stock up for a Dutch dinner party we were having that night. You’ll spot a little windmill pulling up to their driveway.
In addition to the pancake mix, we also got frozen croquettes and salted herring. Croquettes are meat based ragout rolls covered in breadcrumbs, deep-fried, and often served with mustard. You can order them from a snack shop in Holland with a bun so you’re eating it like a hot dog. For some people, anything deep-fried is good. I must admit though that the first time I had croquette I practically spat it out. Now it’s one of the things that I crave. It’s an acquired taste I suppose, much like Kimchi. The Dutch eat their herring raw and salted, sprinkled with chopped onions. The first catch of the season is always a huge event, complete with festivals and a charity auction. The typical way is to grab it by the tail, throw back your head, and swallow. Now, I love sushi but Dutch herring is not something I think I can ever learn to appreciate.
The Dutch consume the most licorice, which they call drop and of which salty ones are especially favored, in the world. It’s certainly addicting to melt one in your mouth. The most curious Dutch culinary tradition, at least to the people I know, is their tradition of putting chocolate flakes or sprinkles on bread for breakfast. Who in their right mind puts chocolate on bread for breakfast??? Well when you think about it, isn’t butter on bread quite weird by itself already? At home during a cold night, I just love making some hot chocolate with Droste cacao. Quite expensive for a box here but a little goes a long way. All of these items we purchased from Dutch Delight.
Speculaas, almond cookies that are traditionally eaten during Sinterklaas, was actually purchased at the Chinese supermarket down the street. Here in the San Francisco Bay Area at least, you’ll find many European cookies and sweets available in Chinese markets, better than what you’ll find at Trader Joe’s sometimes. We’re running low on our supplies but in between Dutch Delight and Haig’s Delicacies (where we last purchased the much-loved stroopwafels but have no new picture of since I ate them all), we don’t have to wait until our next trip to Holland to satisfy these Dutch cravings.