Monday’s Food Traveler

Something delectable!

This Monday, rather than going over a specific food, I’m going to take you on a journey to a food destination not to be missed in the country of my birth, the Netherlands.

Poffertjes-Kraam_MG_8685
Poffertjes Kraam

We’re going to the Poffertjes Kraam Cornelis De Haan in Laren in the Province of Noord-Holland.  A Poffertjes Kraam is a semi-fixed establishment, where the delicious poffertjes are prepared.  First, let me explain to you what poffertjes are, in case you have never experienced them yet.

Poffertjes (POH-fur-tjes) resemble small, fluffy pancakes, that are made with yeast and buckwheat flour. Unlike American pancakes, they have a light, spongy texture. Typically, poffertjes are served with powdered sugar and butter, and sometimes syrup or advocate (a Dutch eggnog-like brandy).

Mainly in the summer season, temporary stands selling poffertjes are quite popular, and sell portions containing one or two dozen of them. Usually the cook prepares them freshly for the customer. They are sold on a small cardboard (sometimes plastic) plate and come with a small disposable fork the size of a pastry fork. Poffertjes are not difficult to prepare, but a special cast iron pan or copper pan (also available in aluminium with Teflon coating) with several shallow indentations in the bottom is required.

Supermarkets also stock mixes for poffertjes, to which only eggs and milk need to be added. Usually they contain some kind of leavening agent like baking powder.

They can also be served with other sweet garnishes, such as syrup, whipped cream or strawberries, for added flavor.

This particular Poffertjes establishment, Cornelis De Haan, is well-known in the Netherlands for the excellent quality of their poffertjes.  This establishment was owned by the De Haan family from 1837 through 1991, at which time it was bought by the current owner, Marcel Hilhorst.  The stand itself originates from 1875, although it has been expanded over time.  They are open from around mid-March to mid-September on all days except Monday; details can be found on their web-site (it is in Dutch only).

Technical Details

This image was shot with a Canon EOS 5D Mk II and an EF 24-105 f/4L lens.  Exposure settings were 1/50 second at f/8 and 400 ISO.

Author: jansenphoto

A Fresh Perspective Photography is more than just a vehicle for capturing the world around me; it provides me with a palette and a set of brushes, with which I paint not only what I see, but also look to express the emotions that are evoked by the scene in front of me in that moment. Growing up in the Netherlands exposed me to a wide cross-section of visual arts that laid the foundation of my photographic view of all that surrounds me. Early influences were the Dutch Masters of the 17th century, to whom I was introduced by my grandfather during museum explorations; favorites among them are the scenes of quotidian life depicted by Jan Steen and Frans Hals and the vivid landscapes of Jacob van Ruisdael. My classical high school education was supplemented by the Boijmans Van Beuningen museum, where I spent many a lunch hour exploring its great collection. Here I was introduced to surrealism with a particular love for the approach taken by Salvador Dali; Dali also rekindled my appreciation for the work of Hieronymus Bosch, who often showed the folly of us mortals. Universal Connections My approach to any photographic subject is to look for understanding first; in this I look to establish either a connection between the viewer and the subject or capture the connection of the subject with its surroundings. The captured image then aims to portray this connection from a perspective that is part of my personal interpretation. This interpretation is often a form of externalized introspection, which may alternately display the connection of isolated beings and items with their environment or highlight the whimsy of the profound world, in which we find ourselves. The universe is full of connections, many of which are waiting to be discovered; part of my journey as a photographer is to document these connections. Any assignment, be it an event, a product shoot or a portrait session is always approached through communication with the client; this is where the first connection is established. Ideas are exchanged and a collaborative plan of action forms, ultimately resulting in a set of images that aim to exceed the expectations of each client. And, lest we forget, it is important to have fun while practicing the serious business of photography!

10 thoughts on “Monday’s Food Traveler”

  1. Thank you for sharing, this is taking me back … although I always preferred loitering outside a stroopwafel stand where you could buy a bag of crumbs for ten cents.

  2. Oh, I love poffertjes, and stroopwafels too for that matter. In my hometown we have an old-fashioned café that is famous (at least in Dordrecht) for its poffertjes, but I prefer the semi-fixed establishments you captured. They have a special smell and I am always amazed at the speed of the cook when he is turning his poffertjes. With stroopwafels we also are lucky here. Every Friday and Saturday a terrific stand sells them at the market. Very hard to walk by without buying anything!

    1. Yes, I miss being able to go to market and get fresh stroopwafels. Luckily, my wife took it upon herself to learn to make stroopwafels, which are amazing and rival the best that I have tasted in the Netherlands.

      Also, we will occasionally have breakfast for dinner, in which case we may use that as an excuse to eat poffertjes 🙂

      1. Oh, homemade stroopwafels, that sounds even better. So fresh, and as I gather, very delicious. I have to confess that I had to smile when I read the word ‘amazing’. No doubt you know there is or was a band called ‘The Amazing Stroopwafels’.

      2. That is too funny! I was not aware of the Amazing Stroopwafels, as I move to the US before they formed (a long time ago). My favorite bands at the time of my departure were Earth & Fire and Focus.

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