It all started on a Saturday, by making trip to Amsterdam to collect two ladies and their luggage....only a few small bags. I didn't know what to expect when we walked into the hotel lobby, surely not one blogging lady in yoga position on a couch... I bit my lip and asked (head upside down) eeeh Sue Cooks Wild Sue? And from the corner of my eye I saw this other blogging lady unfolding herself...My Kitchen in Half Cups Tanna?
Nothing better than speaking upside down to break the ice. The first laughter was on it's way.
We negotiated Amsterdam traffic (taxis and eeh..bikes, I will let someone else explain) to find ourselves a place to have coffee and chat. Time to pile into the car and get home. The kids were looking forward to meet "the English ladies without husbands". Don't ask. English?
The weather was beautiful so after having a tour of the house we were back in the garden with wine and water. And since I am very very organised and planned this wonderful 5-course dinner meant to be served inside on fresh white linen with napkins and crystal... I decided there and then that we would stay outside and served appetizer and first course all together on large plates in the garden. I guess that above anything I am flexible and not sticking to an agenda (::cough::). Really girls, I do have napkins, linen, crystal, candles and stuff although you haven't seen any of it. Ahum. So much for planning. Oh and look, I even got a crash course napkin folding from Tanna!
Already the garden was filled with lots of chatter and laughter, my dinnerplans collapsed as the twins went to have dinner at a friends house instead of staying home, and I spontaneously invited Floris' friend for dinner in their place. In between unwrapping presents and sipping Gratien & Meyer Cremant we all went inside the kitchen to arrange the bites on plates. All hands on deck and I guess that was a preliminary of how the week was going to be. Kitchen, garden and dinner table heart of the matter. Chatter and laughter all around. A very good sign of things to come!
Sue and DH in the kitchen.
For dinner I tried to make a compilation of blog-bites and Dutch originals. Appetizer should have been buckwheat pancakes, spread with wasabi sour cream and smoked salmon cut into little slices. That was going to be followed by a rectangular dish with three bites: puffs filled with shrimp and a little sweet pepper-flavoured cream cheese, a cherry tomato "burger" with basil and buffalo mozzarella cheese sprinkled with balsamic and lemon oil, and piquant peppadew peppers filled with honey-flavoured cream cheese. Well .... it all ended on a large plate for all of us to sample. Assembling buck wheat crepes.
Then we had a creamy roasted yellow bell pepper soup with some fresh baked semolina bread.
DH and F digging in for presents
To proceed with a very Dutch main course: White asparagus with two types of ham (smoked Italian and cooked Dutch), boiled and crumbled eggs with hollandaise sauce and new small potatoes. I got the asparagus from the farmers market and they were really wonderfull, white asparagus that squeak when rubbed together are a sure sign of freshness.
And still even more presents to unwrap! All of us got fabulous gifts (I began to understand what was in all these bags!), we -and I especially- felt very pampered! All the boys were very happy with their T-shirts and had some stories to share in class Monday morning, wearing their new shirts of course!
Can't wait to tell you about the magnificent cookbook Tanna and Sue brought me and , and, ... so many stories to tell!