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Saturday, 19 September 2009

Doing Food Properly

Today it was the turn of the Amsterdam tourist circuit. And an awful lot of it was unfamiliar, but how could that be? After all, I lived here once upon a time. Ah well. There’s a difference between being a resident and being a visiting tourist. Those who live in the city may not be fussed about the Magere Brug, the Koninklijk Paleis, or even, sad to say, the Anne Frankhuis. I used to walk across Dam Square and not even bother with the palace: just avoiding the directionless hordes would do fine.

Thus it was with the local food. Eating out meant either walking over to Leidseplein, if it was a group thing (expats do like to congregate in familiar surroundings), or walking the whole of two shop fronts’ distance to the nearby Eetcafe. So I missed the real Netherlands deal. This evening put that right with a visit to De Blauwe Hollander, not far from the brashness of Leidseplein, on Leidsekruisstraat.

So what’s on offer here? Well, potato and smoked eel soup for starters (tip for those who have a problem with the word “eel” – after being smoked and cut into small pieces, it’s not likely to be doing any slithering). Then a hearty Stamppot with more of those potatoes, sauerkraut and lots of that red meat that I normally avoid. And on a square plate – is it just me, or do a lot of Amsterdam eateries use these? But that’s a mere detail, although a more significant one is that drinks are priced up – but everywhere else does it.

Basically, it’s a good feed. Recommended.

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