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Check Out My Beautiful New Wooden Shoes to Celebrate St. Nicholas Eve!
Submitted by Pam on Thu, 05/12/2011 - 20:29
My sweetie and I just got back from visiting the coolest shop!
But needless to say, things got a bit out of hand as my sweetie browsed the imported food aisles and I happily poked about among the shelves and shelves of Delft Blue pottery candlesticks, ornaments, dishes, canal houses, St. Nicholas figurines and of course wooden shoes.
I have come to the conclusion I am going to need more than wooden shoes and one Delft Blue Windmill ornament to celebrate my Dutch roots on December 5th!
And one of those things needed for the celebration is Edam and Gouda imported from Holland. We brought a big piece of aged gouda home with us but it will probably not last the week - certainly not til December.
The "Gouda" in the grocery stores - which I happen to like by the way - no comparison.
When I bit into the sample, my mouth felt like it was tasting cheese for the first time.
Locals, you just have to visit! And go hungry because they have a lunch bar serving sandwiches featuring their lovely cheeses! Or you can just taste test the cheeses. Did you know there isn't just one Gouda??
And - did you know there are 32 kinds of Dutch licorice? Apparently licorice is a huge favorite in the Netherlands! My sweetie brought his share home - didn't even make it into the photo before it was sampled!
At the end of our visit, Joke, who helped us with our questions and purchases and whose heritage is Dutch East Indies, sat us down and served us complimentary Dutch coffee (in the most beautiful Delft Blue cups) and - get this - Speculaas windmill cookies!
I wish I could have taken every one of you with me.
They do have a web site here and will ship anywhere in the US. It is not yet set up to show the inventory but many, many items available are listed so, by all means, contact Hans or Lia Middelhoven. They are genuinely kind people who will be happy to assist.
If you are local, don't miss a visit with Joke. She will guide you through the food items from the Dutch East Indies. We came home with both salty and sweet soy sauce (OMG) and packets of spices to be used in chicken and beef dishes and even one especially for green beans.
You might find the history of the Dutch East Indies interesting - I sure did. Holland ruled the Dutch East Indies for 300 years before giving Indonesia it's freedom to self rule in 1948. I found this story especially fascinating.
Now if you will excuse me, it is time for another piece of Gouda!