Tag Archives: Rollende Keukens

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.  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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Let The Good Times Rollende

Fire breathing dragon at the Rollende Keukens

They’re Back, and This Time, They’re Smokin’

Hello, I’m back, and so is the Rollende Keukens! Unlike me, who has had an unexpected break for very dull reasons, the Rollende Keukens is an annual event, and this year it’s bigger, bolder and busier than ever.

Oysters, Razor Clams and Prosecco to Kick Start Rollende Keukens 2013

Shellfish and Prosecco: Always the Perfect Start to Any Festival

There are many of the same stalls as we found last year, but there are a lot of new stalls, and also new concepts from old favourites. This year there is much more music, although sadly there are fewer lectures.

BBQ At Rollende Keukens

On Trend

As we made our way around the stalls yesterday, some trends were very clear. Last year, cocktail bars reigned supreme. This year it is all about the barbecue, with many stalls selling spit-roasts, pulled pork, char-grilled chickens, and much more.

Chickens in one of the stalls

Chicken: On Many Stalls, and In One of Them

Of course, there is more to offer, from around the world, from Indian and Thai to Mexican. There are new styles of cuisine, and even some healthy options. The crew from Fifteen Amsterdam have brought a mobile kitchen this year, although there was no sign of Jamie Oliver. I noticed that a lot more stalls have an eye on sustainability, with great organic, more local, and brilliant seasonal fare on offer.

Asparagus Salad with a Delicious sour cream & chervil dressing

A Healthy Option – Fresh Asparagus Salad

There are also a good deal more sweet vans, selling ice creams, cakes, churros, crepes, poffertjes, and all manner of delicious puddings.

Speakeasy Oyster bar

Putting on the Shellfish Ritz

It also seems that there is a lot more glamour this year. The stallholders have really upped their game, with stylish stalls, and beautifully decorated servers. The vans are festooned with beautiful and themed decoration, that matches the beautiful food. 

Rabarcello - tasty rhubarb schnaps

Rabarcello – Delicious and Inspiring

Of course, as one of the organisers of the Rollende Keukens, Mister Kitchen is back, with another lovely rhubarb tasting menu, which at €15 for three courses is an absolute steal. We have lined this up for Saturday, but places go quickly, so we’ll need to be prompt. I can already heartily recommend the Rabarcello. Delicious and refreshing. Of course, I’m eyeing this up to experiment with for my rhubarb glut.

World's Smallest Restaurant

The Littlest Resturant

The most exciting concept I found so far this year is the World’s Smallest Restaurant. Although I didn’t take my tape measure, This cannot be larger than 2m x 1.5m, and is really cute. You get a reservation for 10 minutes, and booking is essential, because this is popular, although the waiting list is not too long.

Inside the World's Smallest Restaurant 1

Tasteful Decor

Inside is lovely, with cute decor, and well-thought out features. The curtain at the front is very fine, and you can see out onto all the people getting excited about the restaurant, but they can’t see you.

Ordering at the World's Smallest Restaurant

Short Orders

The restaurant feels very private. And is so small that the waiters can’t fit in it too. You order through a letterbox…

Service at The World's Smallest Restaurant

Through the Hatch!

…and receive your food through a hatch in the back wall. There is a limited choice, although for €3.50 per person, it really is exceptionally good value for money, as you get two tapas dishes and a drink. The smallest restaurant in the World, with the smallest prices in the World.  You can’t say fairer than that.

A Very Unusual DJ Booth

A Very Unusual DJ Booth

Rollende Keukens is on from 13.00 – 23.00 for the whole of Helmervaart Weekend (Thursday 9th May to Sunday 12th May). This is long enough to break your visits into bite-sized pieces, so you could conceivably eat from every stall.

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Rollende Keukens Gather No Moss

Rollende Keukens

Rollende Keukens

Street food is right at the forefront of food trends at the moment. There have been a number of very successful restaurants and food businesses that have begun as street food vendors, being sold at markets and events. Amsterdam is no different, and this weekend is the Rollende Keukens Festival, at the Westergasterrein. Rollende Keukens means “rolling kitchens”, and the festival is crammed full of mobile kitchens in vans, caravans, and even in a converted mini!

Mini Smoothie Bar

Mini Smoothies For All

There is also entertainment in the form f bands and DJs. When we went on Friday, there were also a fine group of buskers who play rock and roll from the back of a Ford Mustang. This is not the first time I have seen this group, but it is great to see them at a planned event, normally, it is total luck if they happen to park up and start playing at the terrace of your choice. I have still never quite managed to catch their names though.

Cocktails at the Rollende Keukens

Cheers – Cocktails in the Sun

As well as music, there is a kid’s play area, and a demonstration kitchen which has given a series of lessons throughout the weekend. When we were there today, there was a children’s pizza demonstration. Unfortunately, I didn’t catch the rest of the programme.

Barbecued Mussels from Big Green Egg

Barbecued Mussels from Big Green Egg

After dark, there are a series of food related films on offer, although it is worth noting that we went at nine (dusk) on Friday, and a number of the kitchens were already starting to shut up shop for the day. This may be because the Dutch generally like to eat at 6 -6.30, and it is mostly us expats who fill the restaurants in the late evening. This was a popular event, and it could also be that they need to restock after a busy day, so I am not going to pass judgement as to which is more likely to be the case.

Organic Rendang Bloempibrood (Flowerpot Bread)

Organic Rendang Bloempiebrood (Flowerpot Bread)

As I mentioned, we went yesterday, and today. With over 75 different stalls, there is plenty to choose from, and I wanted to give as many of them a chance as possible. As you would expect from so many food vendors in the same place, the cuisines are really varied.

Octopus Pancakes

Octopus Pancakes

With one or two disappointing exceptions, the quality of the food on offer is high. There is something for everyone, including vegetarians, vegans, and even qualitarans like me (organic, local good quality food)! I would have liked to have seen more organic fare, but I really hope that the numbers of producers offering organic will improve if more of us start to demand it.

Oysters from Ik Will Oesters

Oysters from Ik Will Oesters

Over the course of the two evenings, we have eaten oysters, drunk great cocktails, and had some really very good food of all kinds, as well as a couple of disappointments, but no need to dwell upon those.

Smoked BBQ Chicken from the BBQ Smoke Shack (not organic, this was the big guy's)

Smoked BBQ Chicken from the BBQ Smoke Shack (not organic, this was the Big Guy’s)

Rollende Keukens is also open tomorrow from 13.00 – 23.00. It is a fun event, with some great food and drink, and a great atmosphere. We are going back tomorrow to take advantage of the rhubarb tasting menu offered by Mr Kitchen. Maybe we’ll see you there?

Rhubarb Tasting Menu at Mister Kitchen, Ensuring We'll Be Back Tomorrow

Rhubarb Tasting Menu at Mister Kitchen, Ensuring We’ll Be Back Tomorrow!

Rollende Keukens

17-20 May

Westergasterrein

Amsterdam

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