Chasing Pineapples

an English girl tasting her way around the world


June 2013

“Sex, Drugs and Tulips” or “Cheese, Pancakes and Coffee”? A Food Lover’s Amsterdam!

Last weekend was back to what I really love doing… running around new places discovering cultural traditions through local foodie delights. Gala and I went out to Amsterdam for the weekend to visit our friend who has the wonderful opportunity to live and work in the Dutch capital for 6 months. We had a day to amuse ourselves whilst he was at work (providing the world with an iconic Dutch beverage Heineken) so we took the opportunity to research the local delicacies and hunt them down.

Amsterdam is iconic for its ‘sex, drugs and tulips‘, with a few thousand bikes thrown in there along with some beautiful canals. Gala and I quickly formulated our own catchphrase for the city; ‘cheese, pancakes and bohemian cafés‘.

The former cropped up on every street corner and more, tempting passers-by into cheese havens. We delved into four different cheese shops on our first afternoon and in all tasting was not frowned upon but encouraged, which is refreshing and great for us who like to discover through grazing then make our choice of purchase. Gigantic wheels, blocks and slices of cheese lined the shop walls, an array of cheesy creamy shades plus a rogue bright green fellow. This was a pesto flavoured cheese which was a tad fake and rubbery for our liking, but the other interesting combination was truffle cheese which left a fragrance that really hit the back of the throat. After tasting our way around the weird and wonderful inspirations we decided to stick to traditional Reypenaer which was much creamier than expected.

But cheese was not all that Amsterdam had to offer; Dutch pancakes and velvety coffee coming up in the next instalment!




It Started With A Slither…


I just love goats cheese, I can’t comprehend that just over a year ago was the first time I decided to give it a chance, take the plunge and have my first taste. I started with a tiny slither and ended up clearing the decks completely of this creamy and chalky log. Now I can’t keep away, check out these tiny bite-size versions from Noordermarkt in Amsterdam!

Pull Up A Spoon.. Delicious Desserts!

At the London Coffee Festival a month or so ago a delightful girl bounded over asking if I would like to try their latest product offerings. Not one to turn down the chance to taste something new I followed her to the stand of The Collective Dairy. I was offered a sample of their most popular passion fruit yoghurt. I am not a huge fan of yoghurt in general, but passion fruit is one of my ultimate favourite flavours, so I grabbed a spoon. The little pot was full of the most dreamy creamy sweet yoghurt I have yet come across, with the passion fruit pips cutting through the thickness with their slight tang and crunch. The consistency was divine- thick and smooth, reminiscent of one of my favourite textures found in clotted cream! The fun, tongue in cheek company sparked off in New Zealand with the passion to provide the world with ‘the greatest dairy imaginable.. no bull!” And it has made it’s way all the way across the world, so they must be doing something right!

Passion Fruit Yoghurt... Pull up a Spoon!
Passion Fruit Yoghurt… Pull up a Spoon!

I somehow temporarily forgot about this delicious find that I had vowed to buy the day following my first taste. This made the delight in discovering it again in Waitrose last week all the better. £2.39 buys you a sizeable pot from which a spoonful has been forced in front of the faces of many housemates and friends with the standard phrase “try this, it’s the best thing ever!” (this action is a regular occurrence, other desserts of note that have been subject to this are the much loved Speculoos spread and M&S Salted Caramel Billionaire Shortbread). All agreed that my enthusiasm had good grounding (with all three products actually!) and I guess this short post is a more accessible way of spreading the deliciousness, I wish I could treat you all to a spoon!

Someone offering you a spoonful of something delicious and new is never going to go down badly, so I encourage you all to spread the joy and, well, pull up a spoon!

Other desserts that are perfect for spooning:
tiramisu: or four…
M&S Billionaire shortbread pots, so delicious!
clotted cream: …on its own… Is that bad?!
– this Russian Fudge variety of the Dairy Collective Yoghurt looks extremely tempting too


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