Monday, November 26, 2018


IMG 1927
Spaarndammerbuurt, November 26, 2018—
ONE OF MY FAVORITE dishes here in Netherlands: the uitsmijter, an open-faced sandwich involving cheese (omitted today), ham, and three eggs sunny side up.

The name is the Dutch word for "bouncer," in the sense of the guy whose job it is to maintain order at the doorway of the bar — I suppose this was his usual meal, or more likely between-meal pick-me-up.

I don't usually omit the cheese, and I'm not sure why I did this time. It is generally Gouda, the semi-hard cow's-milk cheese about which a book could be written (and probably has), and at best it's a slightly aged one — but not a hard dry aged one; no need to bury an expensive cheese full of character under ham and eggs.

We had this one (for the Contessa ordered the same, but with bacon, oddly, in place of the ham) at a place new to us, comfortable, rather ordinary, a big room with a good-sized bar and, I noted, an even larger dining room adjacent, with big windows, good light, a very pleasant ambiance.

This was in an old building, formerly a traveler's pension, now a hotel with its own brewery, bar, and restaurant. I liked my uitsmijter just fine — I've eaten dozens, and this was like many another. With it I had a couple of Berenburgs made, as I understand it, on the spot. Berenburgs vary widely, though they all involve infusions of herbs (and maybe other things) in Dutch gin (jenever ) and syrup. I preferred one, gingery and lemony; the other seemed over-sweet and unresolved, and went into the cup of tea I had for dessert.

Pension Homeland, Kattenburgerstraat 7, Amsterdam, Netherlands; 📞+31(0)20 723 2550

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