Rollende in the Deep

Rabarcello: A Rollende Keukens Staple

Rollende Keukens has Rolled Back Around!

It’s the Ascension day long weekend, and the Rollende Keukens has been in full effect. Even bigger than last year, and the weather has been fantastic, meaning that the Mister Kitchens guys have actually been posting that the grounds are full, and asking people to consider going to a different park to enjoy the sunshine. Of course, I got in early, and I got in fast, so I have a lot of photos and food to share with you all.

Butch and Dutch by Mister Kitchens

Nose to Tail at the Butch and Dutch

It’s only fair to start with The Mister Kitchen Crew, without whom none of this would be possible. The Rollende Keukens, and the Rabarcello are their brain children. They always have a tasting menu, and there is always plenty of rhubarb spirit on display. This year, they also offered excellent spit roasts to take away too. ย I think this is a great strategy, as it means that people can choose to graze, or have the usual sit down three course menu.

Wall of Duck Face at Rollende Keukens

Duck: A Definite Trend This Year

This year there seemed to be a lot of stalls serving duck, some were duck devotees, and sold nothing else; and some had duck as a highlight. Sadly, none of it seemed to be organic, and none was declared free range, or I would have been tucking in.

Brandt & Levie Blood Hot dog

This Black Dog is Really Fun

Luckily, there were plenty of stalls that offered foods for the welfare-fussy eater, including many vegetarian vegan, and organic meat options, including this excellent hot dog from Brandt and Levie, made with blood sausage, and pancetta, served with a relish of mustard and apple compote.

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There was also a couple of stalls doing game. This one, called Game from the Wild, is right up my street, and the merguez was succulent, well-spiced and tasty. I’d eat this again. My friend from the Morning Claret had a different experience with the Wild Boar kebab, so I’d stick with the sausage if I were you!

Steamed Dim Sum from Dim Sum Now

What Do We Want? When Do We Want It?

We arrived on the first visit really hungry, and these dim sum nicely took the edge off, so that we had the chance to go around and scout out the next tasty treat. I didn’t get too much sauce with these, which was a relief, because it was pretty strong stuff.

Asparagus Cream, Egg and Farmer's Cheese in Ciabatta

White Knight

Among many expats that I know, there is a bit of a gentle joke about how much the Dutch like white food. White asparagus, chopped boiled egg, lightly coloured ham and bechamel is a delicacy here. This original take on the dish from the Gastrovan has made me suddenly look at white food in a different light. The asparagus was pickled in something boozy, and the asparagus cream was definitely my try-at-home inspiration of this year’s festival.

Harissa shelfish, and oysters

If Music Be the Food of Love, This One Really Sang to Me!

There were a lot of oyster bars this year, one of which had a wide variety of oysters to pick and choose from. We lined up here, and while the Big Guy was queuing, I went to the sister stand, Zee en Zuil, because I’d spied razor clams, which I can never resist. They come barbecued with a medley of shellfish, cooked in a white wine, garlic parsley and rose harissa broth. It is the shellfish future.

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As always, the attention to detail on the stands was incredible. I particularly liked the herb table from bloempie, who I reviewed in 2012. I almost wish that I could justify building one of these myself.

Omelegg Stall at Rollende Keukens

This stall Was Calling My Name

Every stall holder that I talked to was really personable, and the sun was shining. All around people were having a great time. Some stalls spoke louder to me than others, however!

One of the most popular stalls, and also one of the most novel, was the Microbar, who were serving insects. Meal worm spring rolls, and cricket lollipops were on the menu. Given that all of the futurists are claiming that insects will be an important global food source in a world with 12 Bn inhabitants, we all need to get a bit more used to the thought of eating insects. With that in mind, I was determined to give it a go. I am not a big fan of slimy foods, like okra, so I decided that the meal worms were a step too far. The cricket was crunchy, and mostly tasted of the chilli and lemon zest caramel that they had been coated in, so that was much more to my taste. A nice little finish to yet another tasty weekend.

Rollende Keukens left us as full as the Westergasterrien has been all weekend, but that isn’t because of the weather!

Rollende Keukens is held at the Westergasterrein, Amsterdam every Hemelvaart Public Holiday weekend. Maybe I’ll see you there next year?

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9 Comments

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9 responses to “Rollende in the Deep

  1. Good to read your write-up Mel. Yes, sadly the Wild-Zwijn Gyros was a disappointment (tough and tasteless). The standouts for me were the Rilette (served hot, on bread) and an outstanding scallop served with citrus-cream (both from the same stall).

    As a first-time visitor, one thing really disappointed me – the very limited and boring choice of beer. Clearly the result of event sponsorship, it seemed quite incongruous that there was so much tasty and interesting food on offer, but it had to be washed down with brand pilsener or the equally tasteless brand weisse.

    Given the number of craft breweries now operating in Amsterdam alone, this felt like a missed opportunity. For example, at the also recent Food Film Festival, we were tucking into Oedipus’s wonderful ales, and there were a few other choices (OK, Gulpener were the sponsor, but clearly didn’t require exclusivity).

    All in all, still a great day out in the sun though!

    • Yes, it really was a great day.

      I agree about the beers, I’d forgotten to mention that in my write up. I didn’t manage to get to the Food Film Festival last year, but the year before it was held in a number of venues that had their own bar. I like that the sponsors did not demand exclusivity, that seems sensible to me.

  2. Sounds like a very good day out. And the kind of day out you would need to prepare for by not eating for the whole week before! I like your photo of the herb table – it would be a great idea for a cafe.

    • It is a great day out. Thoroughly recommended. Although I have to say that I didn’t prepare that well, given that I ate really well the week before. ๐Ÿ™‚

      I love that herb table – if I ever have a cafe, that is what I’m going to have. I love that idea

  3. afracooking

    There really was some fabulous food and it was so nice once the weather was good – but oh my, it has turned so busy this year! I wish there was more to do in this city of ours so not EVERYONE would show up at those few fabulous events ๐Ÿ™‚

    • I know Afra. I was lucky enough to get there early, when the weather was worse. I also popped by Friday lunch time, when people were back at work, but it filled up so rapidly at 5.30. I was glad I’d got my fix early.
      Maybe next year, we’ll run into each other? ๐Ÿ™‚

      • afracooking

        Ah, very smart of you – I was there friday around 6 or so which probably was the bussiest time! Would be great to meet there (or maybe some other Amsterdam foodie event) ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Hello Afra. I apologise for my very tardy reply, but yes I really hope to meet you in de buurt soon ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m sure it will happen!

  4. petra08

    It looks like a nice day out! Not sure about the insects but glad you liked them! ๐Ÿ™‚ Wish I could have been there! ๐Ÿ™‚

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