I admit it: I’ve developed a slight obsession for all Dutch things lately.
First there was lovely Aniek, who is the third member of the Trifecta of Twitter Greatness (along with Maz and me). She is Dutch. That might have been enough to spark my obsession. But then she told me her brother was moving to Cincinnati for work. So I figured if I was going to actually meet someone who is Dutch, then I ought learn something about the Netherlands.
Anyway, what do you think I started learning about the Netherlands? History? Politics? Geography? Hah!
Food. (Okay, and sport too.)
They have delicious food in the Netherlands, apparently. There are stroopwafels, oliebollen, speculaas, pannenkoeken, drop, vla… that’s just sweets and desserts! And they have so many different kinds of cheeses. That’s how I know it’s the place for me. Sweets and cheese.
There’s also hutspot and pea soup. And french fries with mayo, which I cannot wrap my mind around just yet. And then under Advanced Dutch Cuisine is herring and onions. Not sure that I’ll ever try that one. Seriously, just go read the whole Wikipedia entry on Dutch cuisine.
For my first foray into Dutch cooking, I made stamppot boerenkool. That is, mashed potatoes and kale. Of course, because I do not have a Dutch mama (my mom makes awesome German food though), I did not grow up eating this dish and, thus, have no clue what it is supposed to taste like. I just made this how I think it ought to be made. Normative cooking, I guess you could call it. Or stamppot boerenkool ala Americana.
Stamppot Boerenkool (Mashed potatoes and kale)
Prep time: 15 minute Cook time: 35 minutes
- 1 pound (500 g) potatoes – I use Yukon Golds because they are good for mashing
- 100-150 g kale, chopped into small pieces – I eyeballed it, just use a little more than you think is enough because it shrinks a lot.
- 1 leek, chopped – Don’t know how kosher this is, but I love leeks and they are common in Dutch cooking I think?
- 1 bay leaf
- salt and pepper
- 3-4 Tablespoons butter
- a quantity of milk or cream (1/2 cup of milk, I would guess)
- Wash, peel, and quarter the potatoes. I don’t really peel them all the way because I like the skins. Put them in a big pot.
- Add the chopped kale, leeks, and bay leaf to the pot. Fill with water until the vegetables are just covered. Add a little spoonful of salt.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and keep just below a boil for 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.
- Drain and let sit for about 5 minutes. Remove the bay leaf. Transfer to a bowl for mashing.
- Add the butter, and start mashing. Slowly add the milk and mash until the potatoes are nice and creamy. (I used my KitchenAid. Best $65 I ever spent ). Salt and pepper to taste.
Sooo, since I love the color orange and I can make stamppot boerenkool, can I have my Dutch passport now, Aniek?