Although the quality and variety of food in Australia is great, there are times when we long for some Dutch food. No, for us that is not the kroketten the frikandellen or the drop. They even make decent fries here, although people give you an astonished look when you ask for mayonnaise with it. “Yes, we fuck’n drown them in that shit”. What we miss is all the different bread toppings, like pindakaas, hagelslag, appelstroop and ontbijtkoek (see picture above).
Luckily there is a Dutch-German store in Croyden that has most of the supplies that make us happy. So today I drove up there for the second time to do some grocery shopping.
Since the Dutch are already krenterig by nature (a Dutch word which is closest to thrifty, as in using money carefully and not wanting to spent too much), they might be extra krenterig when it concerns food that they know has very different prices in the Netherlands. Therefore the store can probably not live off Dutch-German food alone, so it is also a gift store and a confectionery.
I guess the Dutch are pretty specialized on their sweet bread toppings, as I have not seen any other country that has such a big variety. Next to the ‘normal toppings’ like marmelade, honey and Nutella there are many different chocolate varieties like hagelslag (sprinkles) and vlokken (flakes), which of course all come in milk, dark and white variety. But also speculoos (a cookie spread), muisjes and gestampte muisjes (anise flavored sprinkles), gekleurde hagelslag (coloured sprinkles).
Paying $ 8.50/€ 6.10 for a small jar of peanut butter is a lot of money. But the expression on Kai’s face when putting his teeth in a Calvé peanut butter sandwich completely makes up for that. They sell some sort of peanut butter here as well, but it just isn’t the same…
Last time I visited the Dutch store, they even sold Old Amsterdam cheese. A really tasteful cheese, even the exported variety. The regular Dutch Gouda which they sell, unfortunately is the same quality as the one that gets exported to Germany, a variety that does not have a lot of flavor.
After living in Melbourne for nine months, it is great to be able to buy some familiar flavors. Yes it has been that long already, long enough for a baby to be conceived and born. Time sure flies when you are having fun!