Dutch fries

Fries (or chips); delicious deep fried potato strips. Belgium is famous for their fat ‘Vlaamse frieten’, but did you know Dutch people can also make delicious fries? In this post I will share some places which serve delicious fries.

We have a lot of potatoes which we can transform into fries. Besides the fries, Dutch mayonnaise is also really delicious; sweet, creamy and a bit salty. That combo makes a winner.
We call it:
‘Frietje met’ = fries with… (mayonnaise)
‘Patatje oorlog’ = fries war, sometimes with peanut sauce
‘Patatje speciaal’ = fries with mayo, curry ketchup and onions

You can usually get your fries at a snack bar, but recently there are some hip spots which specializes in fries. I have not tried a lot hip places yet, but here is a small summary of my fries adventures.

My memorable fries places are:

Luc’s fries – Delft

The most basic fries; potato and mayo. The fries have the right crispiness and potato softness inside. The mayo is so good! Sweet. This is my favorite basic fries place.

Address: Pieterstraat 41, Delft

lucsloempias.nl

Pickles and Wine – Rotterdam (franchise)

This is a burger place, but their fries are also really good. Their fries are a bit smaller and thinner, there is some rosemary mixed with it, at least, I think it’s rosemary…. The first time I ate fries with rosemary was in London at Honest Burger (my first ever blog post!). It was so good!

Locations: Utrecht, Rotterdam, Scheveningen, Den Haag

firmapickles.nl

Roast Chicken Bar – Delft (franchise)

This is a chicken place as the name suggests. There was a special fries dish topped with pulled chicken. The chicken had a sweet BBQ sauce which was so delicious. This combo wins, because of the pulled chicken. I have to apologize for the crappy mobile photo. Soon there will be new photos… They also had other interesting side dishes like homemade ‘appelmoes’ (apple sauce) and tomato chutney.

Addresses: Turfmarkt 26, Haarlem | Voldergracht 12, Delft

www.roastchickenbar.com

 

Other fries places, but not my favorite:

Bram Ladage (franchise)

I have eaten fries from this franchise only once. I can’t remember whether I liked it or not. Sorry, I can’t give a clear review about this place. But I often hear other people praising this franchise, so must be good.

Locations: Rotterdam, Schiedam, Capelle aan den IJssel, Vlaardingen, Ridderkerk, Hoogvliet, Oud-Beijerland, Delft, Spijkenisse, Zoetermeer, Rijswijk, Dordrecht, Gouda, Den Haag, Nieuwegein, Utrecht.
(so many locations!)

bramladage.nl

Friet District – Delft (franchise)

A hip fries place in Delft, original from Den Haag. I ordered fries and a burger. The burger had pulled pork with it, I didn’t really like it, but Lazy Bear did like it. Also with my fries I ordered lemon mayonnaise. That was not the best choice… Lemon goes great with desserts, but not with fries. The fries were good, not really special. (I think the lemon mayo messed up my fries experience.)

Addresses: Prinsestraat 73, Den Haag | Voldersgracht 4, Delft

www.frietdistrict.nl

Bik Frietwerk – Den Haag

Hip place in Den Haag. The interior of the restaurant is really nice. Bik Frietwerk offers fries with different toppings. I tried the Bik Hot Cheese fries from a friend, but the cheese was too gooey and filling for me, so I didn’t really like it. I still want to try some other toppings.

Address: Turfmarkt 228, Den Haag

facebook.com/BIKFrietwerk

There are much more good fries places, but this is it for now. Do you have any favorite fries place I need to try? Do share!

Have a lovely weekend!

Are chefs painters?

Is it possible to describe the food style/taste of a chef like a visual identity for a company? The food identity of the chef.

What kind of words would you use? Feelings? Taste words? Colors?
A chef needs to understand all the tastes and ingredients, so they can create awesome dishes.

Is it like art? Understanding color and understanding how to mix them to create WOW paintings? People come back for those same style paintings.

Chef’s understand taste, texture and methods… they can create a WOW dish. People come for those same style flavors: a bit similar to their old experience, but still mindblowing.

Cooking is like art I believe. You can be creative with tastes, colors and textures. Art stimulates the eye and creates feelings in the observer. Food stimulates the eye, tongue, nose and create feelings in the eater.

Also at a more fancy restaurant the chef will make art of your plate. So yes, chefs are painters.

Sketch process

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That was my small food for thought of the week.

Coming soon

It has been a bit quiet in the foodvlog department, but there are plans to film at two restaurants. So you can expect two foodvlogs coming soon.

It’s also becoming hot… I am planning to share a refreshing cucumber salad with you guys. And mum is back in town, so a dumpling recipe (or video maybe?) is coming soon. Lots to look forward to 🙂

Have a sunny weekend!

PuiCk ~ Around the world food in Breda

PuiCk is a small and hip restaurant in Breda which will surprise you with their food.

About half a year ago I went there with Lazy Penguin and Lazy Sloth. I was attracted to the place, because it had swings behind the window and it looked quite cozy with all the plants.

Inside we found a vintage store with all different kinds of chairs, tables and lamps.

Against the walls is a cabinet with all kinds of different food in nice design packages. Everything is for sell, even the chairs, tables and lamps.

Menu & Food

On the menu there were a lot of foreign dishes. I was craving for some noodles, so I ordered the fried noodles. The other two buddies ordered a shared plate with bread and toppings. Too be honest, I didn’t expect much, because often when I eat Asian food at a non-Asian place, it is okay food. But THIS! This was exceptionally good! The right balance of sauce, sweetness, saltiness. And the toppings of Penguin and Sloth were so tasty! Chicken something, salmon, pulled pork, eggplant and a olive oil spread. It was awesome. (I have to apologize for the vague memories, but soon I will visit PuiCk again for fresh memories :))

Stir fried Indonesian noodles

Shared platter

By now they have a new menu. They serve soups, pita bread filled with deliciousness, fresh spring rolls, Lebanese flatbread, salads and more lunch dishes. I really have to go back and try out the new menu.

Insects

What I also find special, they serve insects on the menu. You could pick for the special shared plate with worms and grasshopper. When I paid for the meal at the desk, you could also try a worm instead of a mint. It tasted hollow and starchy; needs a bit more salt 😛

Visit them!

PuiCk
Veemarktstraat 56, 4811 ZJ Breda
+31 (0) 76 514 3755
puick.nl

Mon                Closed
Tue-Sat           11.00 – 17.00
Sun                 13.00 – 16.00

Easy recipe: fish curry

There are times when you don’t want to spend too much time stir frying behind the stove, but just let the dish simmer while you can do other useful things (like watching cooking videos on YouTube).

So here is a simple simmer dish:

Ingredients:

  • 300 gram fish (Pangasius filet)
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 carrot
  • 2 spring onion
  • 1 onion
  • 1/2 white cabbage
  • bamboo sprouts (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder / masala powder (I got this from an Indian friend)
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • (about) 3 cups of water (or use coconut milk)

1 | Cut everything into bite size pieces. I added bamboo shoots as ingredient, but you can use any vegetable you have at home.

2 | Add oil in the pan. Stir fry the ingredients which can simmer long first: green onion, garlic, bamboo, onion, zucchini and fish. Fish can be put in later, because it is done really fast, but here I put it in first. Add 2 tablespoons of curry powder. Stir fry for 5 minutes.

3 | Add the rest of of the vegetables. Add 2 cups of water, till almost all vegetables are soaked in the water. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Trust your feeling about the salt and pepper. Actually, I have no idea how much salt I used. Add salt little by little and taste.

4 | Simmer for 10 minutes and your fish curry (soup) is done! To make it more creamy and thick, you can coconut milk instead of water.

5 | Serve with rice.

Enjoy! 

 

The fear of cooking (+ roast chicken recipe)

Once upon a time there was a little girl who was making instant ramen for the​ first time. Mom told her to crack some eggs in the boiling water, but she was way too afraid. What if the hot water would splash on her hand? That would be painful…

Cooking can be scary: dealing with sharp knives (don’t cut the finger!), using fire to make the pans hot (the burn!). And the food can come out crappy… But stop there! Don’t be scared! After some practice it will be fine! After failing a dish, at least you know what NOT to do the next time.

Story time

I have had some fail moments in my lifetime of cooking. Especially making something the first time.

I still remember well the first time stir frying. With a good friend we tried to stir fry beef with green beans. Using the stir fry basics learned from my parents it should be fine right? Cutting and marinating the beef went well. Then stir fry the meat first, take it out of the wok and stir fry the green beans. When the green beans are almost done, add the meat and done!
In the end the meat was so dry. I am guessing we added the beef in too early. So while waiting for the green beans to be done, the meat became dry. FAIL! But now, I have a vast knowledge of how long meat and vegetables need to be stir fried. Just try it often and find the right time. Try, fail, try, succeed!

This blog post idea came to me, because I made 6 hour roast chicken for the first time. I don’t use the oven often, but I thought: what could go wrong? Just put the chicken in the oven on low heat for a very long time, that should come out delicious right? Well… I will tell you the result after the recipe.

6 Hour Roast Chicken

Inspired by different roast recipes I used the following ingredients:

  • 1 Whole chicken
  • 4 shallots (or onions)
  • 6 garlic gloves
  • A bush of coriander
  • 4 slices of ginger
  • salt (sorry, don’t know the amount)
  • black pepper, Sichuan peper
  • oil
  • fish sauce
  • soy sauce
  • white vinegar
  • lemon (I didn’t have a lemon, but I wanted to use one. I used white vinegar as the sour ingredient)

1. The main ingredients. Pre-heat the oven on the lowest Celsius degree possible. Mine was 110 Celsius degrees (230 Fahrenheit).

2. Cut everything. Cut some long celery stems for holding the chicken up. Cut shallots in half. Peel the garlic gloves.

3. Place the celery stems and shallots in an oven dish. A dash of oil over the ingredients.

4. Mix a sauce: 3 dashes of soy sauce, 1 dash of fish sauce, 1 splash white vinegar, pepper, sichuan pepper. Put sauce, garlic gloves, ginger, coriander and chunks of celery inside the chicken. (Also a lemon if you have one. Cut in two and squeeze in and over the chicken. Put the lemons inside the chicken.) Lift the skin of the chicken near butt area. You can poor in the sauce here. Use leftover sauce on the outside of the chicken. Drizzle some oil on the chicken. Add extra salt and pepper on the outside.

5. Use a rope to hold the chicken legs together, this prevents burning them. Put the chicken in the oven and sit and wait for 6 hours.

6. After 6 hours you have crispy chicken!

The meat just fell of the bones.

After tasting it…

In the end the taste was really nice. Salty chicken meat and the shallots were so sweet and salty. The texture however was a bit dry to my liking. It was very mushy/sandy, not dry like terrible cooked chicken, but still a dry feeling. I think this could be better if I injected salt water brine into the chicken. That is a trick to keep the chicken moist. Also I didn’t have a lemon and only added the white vinegar later to the chicken. I think the sourness also keeps the meat tender. So the next time when I will roast a chicken, I will keep these things in mind and make the perfect chicken!

So readers, don’t be afraid to cook. You can only become better, after making something terrible 😛

Have a good weekend! 

Your wish-dish at your favorite restaurant

Bad at cooking?

Making someone’s favorite food is showing love. What if you are not that good of a cook, but you still want to serve someone’s favorite food. What to do then?

💡 Cooking service!

What if restaurants offer a service where you can let them make a dish of your choice. You can also choose your own favorite dish, but the idea here is that you let the chef make something your friend likes. Sharing some love yo!

But what about the ingredients? The restaurant might not have the stuff you want to make. Or even worse, they don’t know how to make it. But assuming they have master-fast-learning skills, they can use a recipe.

So the restaurant would need:
– Ingredients (the restaurant can buy it beforehand, or the customer brings the ingredients)
– The recipe (from the internet or from the customer)

Does a cooking service exist already?

Maybe it’s too much effort for the restaurant to make something new or it takes too long to make something off-menu.

On the internet I can find restaurants where you can cook your own food. Like Korean BBQ or making dakgalbi; DYI-restaurants. But that’s not really what I was looking for.

DYI Korean BBQ

Going on…
Oh wow, there are already websites offering a chef who will come to your house and cook! Hire A Chef.com. Awesome! Then my “MacDonalds home cook service” idea has sort of come true. On a side note, according to my friends, MacDonalds in the Netherlands will soon have home delivery service! Burger King is already offering home delivery service in Den Haag and Emmen.
Hire a chef does solve the problem of making someone’s favorite food though.. but I want to take the concept to the restaurant! Nanananana (batman transition sound)

There was a trend in 2013 with Bringing Your Own Food (BYOF) in the USA at bars where they don’t serve food. At those places you can drink and have food delivered to the place. But that’s also not really what I have in mind. So I think my idea doesn’t really exist yet. Or it has been done and failed. Who knows..

The Concept

What if there is a website for sharing this kind of service. Customers will post their wish-dish and restaurants can bid on a dish, the customer can then choose from different restaurants.

Or the other way around; the customer picks his favorite restaurant and suggest a wish-dish. The restaurant needs to say yes and schedule a date.

Steal this idea

I really wonder what restaurants will think of this idea. Is it feasible? Would they like to offer this kind of service? I am thinking of asking a few restaurants and see what they think (user research!). Also would people want this kind of service??? I also have no idea. Would you like this kind of idea?

The idea can be developed more by focusing on the surprise part. What kind of nice surprises can be added to the restaurant trip? How to make it even more special?

Dear Restaurant owners, feel free to use this idea and develop it further. I am really curious how it would work out in the real world. Have a good weekend!

Kimmade ~ Vietnamese food in Utrecht

I proudly present my second foodvlog with Lazy Penguin. This time we visited a Vietnamese restaurant in Utrecht: Kimmade. Kimmade serves delicous snacks and meals at Kimmade Streetfood. About a month ago they have opened a bigger restaurant: Kimmade Food Village. Here you can sit down, relax and eat delicious food. They also serve alcohol, which they don’t serve at Kimmade Streetfood.

Let’s go to the video and see Lazy Penguin’s experiences.

Thank you for having an interview with us Kim Sang! We were very happy to hear the story from the owner himself. Today I will keep this post short, since Lazy Penguin already showed a lot in the video. Here are some photos.

The food

The food is refreshing, crispy, salty, little bit sour (can be more sour for me). The food has a soft taste, but strong herbs; a soothing and healthy meal.

The menu

Visit them!

Kimmade Food Village
Oudegracht aan de Werf 61, 3511AD, Utrecht
www.kimmade.nl/food-village

Monday till Sunday
Breakfast     08:00 – 12:00
Lunch           12:00 – 16:00
Dinner          17:00 – 22:00