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Little Dutch Goodiesby Pierre-Luc Moeys, Oriole9

Since New York was first colonized by the Dutch before the English and French arrived, it is only fitting to honor that by enjoying “Dutch treats” here from time to time. Here are some easy and popular goodies I like to prepare—some of these are on the menu at Oriole 9, in Woodstock.

For breakfast or late night dinner: The Uitsmijter! (Pronounced outs-my-ter), which is Dutch for “bouncer.” The story goes that this dish was served to café patrons late at night, just before they were kicked out at closing time. It’s still a popular breakfast and lunch dish in the Netherlands, with plenty of variations. But the most standard version is simply white bread, ham and eggs, with cheese optional. We also make it with rare roast beef instead of the ham.

What you need:

2 slices of toast, buttered
2 slices of ham: Black Forest, Virginia, country style…whatever you like
2 slices of cheese: nice creamy medium-aged cheese best
3 eggs

Top toast with ham and cheese slices. Fry eggs sunnyside up, over low heat to keep the eggs white and firm, and place cooked eggs on top. Sprinkle with parsley.

Here’s a classic Dutch way of preparing white asparagus (this can be done with green asparagus as well, but white is preferred). Once looked down upon as peasant food, the Dutch now refer them as “white gold.” And for those who would point out that Hollandaise is French, well, some historians believe it was invented in the Netherlands, then taken back to France by the Huguenots. In fact, a recipe for Hollandaise appears in a Dutch cookbook by Carel Baten, written in 1593! This recipe serves four.

What you need:

8-10 asparagus spears per person (32-40 total)
4 whole eggs
4 egg yolks
8 slices boiled ham
4 tbsp. white wine (e.g. Pinot Blanc d’ Alsace)
1 cup melted butter
pinch of nutmeg
1 tsp. lemon juice
salt and white pepper to taste
2 tbsp. finely chopped flat leaf parsley
1 tsp. mace

Soak the asparagus in cold water as soon as you get home from the market. (If preparing later, wrap stalks in damp tea towel, and store in the vegetable drawer of your fridge.) Rinse and peel with potato peeler, starting from the head and working down, cut off woody bit at end. Place asparagus in large pot, add pinch of salt, and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, add ½ tsp. lemon juice, a pinch more salt, and mace. Lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, leave asparagus in hot water for another 15-20 minutes, until tender. While waiting, hard boil the eggs, and chop finely. Slice ham into narrow strips.

For the Hollandaise: using metal mixing bowl, beat egg yolks and wine until foamy. Place on low heat (over saucepan of hot to boiling water), and continue whisking until sauce thickens (don’t let the eggs curdle). Remove from heat and add melted butter, in a thin trickle, while continuing to whisk. Add nutmeg, remaining lemon juice (½ tsp.), and salt and white pepper to taste, whisk again, and set aside.

Gently drain cooked asparagus, don’t damage the heads! Plate stalks facing same direction, and top with ham, eggs, and Hollandaise. Scatter parsley over the top, and serve with a nice chilled white wine. It’s also not uncommon for the Dutch to substitute melted butter for the Hollandaise, for a lighter texture.

And now, dessert—or breakfast—if that’s how you like it. The “Stroop waffle” is best cooked with a pizzelle iron, which is really just a shallow waffle iron with round forms. (If you don’t have a pizzelle iron, these can be baked on a cookie sheet about 15 minutes, or until golden brown. Leave a little spot for the filling though.) “Pizzelle” literally means “little pizzas”; what we usually refer to as pizzelles, are thin wafer-like crispy cookies made with eggs, sugar, flour, and anise (licorice) flavoring. Feel free to add flavoring as you wish.

What you need:

4 cups all-purpose flour
½ cup white sugar
1 cup butter
2 eggs
1 package of active dry yeast (.25 oz.)
½ cup warm water

Filling-
1½ cups brown sugar (packed)
1 cup butter
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
6 tbsp. dark corn syrup

First, the waffle. Dissolve yeast into warm water. Meanwhile, cut and mix butter into the flour. Mix in sugar, eggs, and yeast/water well, and set aside to rise, 30-60 minutes. Roll dough into little balls, and cook with pizzelle (or waffle) iron until golden brown, and a little crispy.

For the filling: In a saucepan, bring brown sugar, cinnamon, and corn syrup to a boil, until it reaches the “soft ball” stage, at 240°F. Split waffles in half and spread sides with warm filling, replace sides. If you like these waffle/cookies, and you ever find yourself in Amsterdam, check out the waffle maker on the Aelbert Cuyp Markt, in the De Pijp area. He is the best!

Pierre-Luc Moeys is the owner and chef at Oriole9, see www.oriole9.com for more.



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