Thursday, May 28, 2009

Typically Dutch 006: Pannenkoeken (Dutch Pancakes at Marienwaerdt)

Pancakes! And pancakes the Dutch way! =)

Traditional Dutch pancakes are thicker than French crepes and thinner than the usual Hungry Jack pancakes I grew up with.

Pancake restaurants are actually a HUGE thing in the Netherlands. It is a local thing and it’s where families frequent during weekends. With every ingredient thrown into a bowl and mashed until muggy, no wonder the Dutch Kitchen is ever (never) going to make it to international cuisine stardom, but guess what? Dutch pancakes are a constitution here in its own right!

So, if you are one of those seriously looking at taking a real peek and experiencing Dutch food the “gezellig” way, take my word and look for a pancake restaurant. And outside Amsterdam please because Amsterdam is not the Netherlands.

I had to delete fotos of my recent Marienwaerdt weekend of nature pleasure because I forgot to upload the fotos from my camera to my laptop and I need to make room for my Normandy trip. Arrrrgh! Well, I have already forgiven myself. This is the only surviving foto of my Marienwardt weekend with the Dutchman, our Dutch pancakes. Mine is ham and apple, his is ham and raisins.

Dutch pancakes, unlike its counterparts, are like ice cream. They come in many flavors and with different toppings.

I’ve had ham and apple pancake in Mariendwaerdt while Dutchman had ham and raisin pancake. I saw unique pancake specialities on the menu, some with vegetables, seafood, and even meat like shaorma! I haven’t been brave enough to try them though as I can’t imagine sprinkling powdered sugar on them. I like my pancakes with powdered sugar. Please. Thank you.

These pancake restaurants are usually barns and farm houses converted into convivial restaurants with open terraces, a large playground for the children and in most cases situated near a forest, park or estate. A very typical Dutch family thing is to go for long walks with nature during weekends and ending it with a hearty pancake treat.

In time I have accumulated a few favorites in my list. The row of inviting pancake restaurants in Lage Vuursche near Bilthoven has been on my mind lately, perhaps its time to go back there. The popular pancake restaurant in Rhijnauwen in Bunnik is another favorite choice. Instead of always going by car or bike, why not take the boat trip (romantic idea) from Utrecht Center through the Rhine River to this pancake restaurant? And recently, I have been in Mariendwaerdt in Beesd where they also serve yummy pancakes!

I just remembered now the pancake boat restaurant with the Dutch flag I saw in Germany. Think it was in Bremen or Cologne. A floating or traveling Dutch pancake restaurant. Cool.

Visit Period: May 2009
Destination: Beesd, Geldermalsen (Gelderland), The Netherlands

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