February 4, 2013 by booksandbruschetta
When you think Amsterdam many things probably come to mind before food… That is probably for good reason. Amsterdam all the way up in the Netherlands is known for its lack of let’s say… regulations, not it’s fine cuisine. Nonetheless this past weekend I ventured to Amsterdam with my foodie expectations set fairly low and my fun expectations set a tad higher.
Before we departed Nonna had told Danielle and I that Amsterdam was one of her favorite cities. She went on and on about how beautiful it was, but I never really understood until I saw it myself. Tall skinny buildings full of character line streets that line gorgeous canals all over the city. I was absolutely stunned… already Amsterdam was exceeding my expectations. Friday was a long day, departing for the airport by 3:40am and getting into Amsterdam around 11:30am. By the time we found our way to the hostel and checked in we were pretty exhausted so we wandered around and explored the city for the rest of the day. All that traveling left me starved and in need of a proper meal and to my surprise… I got one.
Food options in Amsterdam is much more like food options in America than in Italy. In Italy when you go out you are getting Italian food (unless you find Mama’s Bakery or The Diner in Florence which serve up American fare). In Amsterdam there are restaurants and vendors selling foods of all sorts. You can get chinese, argentinian, belgian, american, italian, or one of my new favorites irish. Yup, we stopped in an Irish pub for dinner that was dishing out some massive Irish breakfast plates. I got 2 eggs, beans, mushrooms, tomatoes, bacon, sausage, hash browns, and Irish pudding. Sure it may sound a little excessive, but if you read my breakfast post last week you’d know that I’ve been in serious need of a proper breakfast.
Saturday was cold, but sunny, perfect for venturing to the sites we wanted to see. We made our way to Anne Frank House first, which was an absolutely amazing experience. To see how she lived in hiding and read her diary entries in that very house was beyond emotional and beyond expression. I highly recommend it. All the emotion left us in need of some lunch, but since we were on a time crunch we searched on the way to our next destination. We found a quaint bar and I had an urge to try something new!
Now I love me some salmon. That pink fleshed and flaky fish is one of my favorites, but something I have never tried is smoked salmon and cream cheese. I’ve always heard good things so I went for it! A plate with cold smoked salmon layered over smooth velvety cream cheese and topped with salty pickled capers, red onion, and arugula all between two nutty slices of brown bread was set down in front of me. I can not believe I have been allowed to live this long without experiencing this before! The combo was delicious and light, it left me just full enough to still have room for a beer or two at the Heineken Factory…
The “Heineken Experience” as they call it was really cool! Learned how to brew, got some history on the Heineken family, and drank some good beers with friends! We finished off the day with a low key Dispatch concert in the center of Amsterdam. Dispatch had a great set and I caught the guitar pic! That one’s going in the travel journal.
Amsterdam was overwhelming, but incredibly fun and held some unexpected pleasant surprises! After all that time in a new place I actually got a little homesick for Florence and couldn’t have been happier when Nonna was waiting for us with a nice big bowl of tortellini.
Nutrition Facts for my salmon and cream cheese sandwich with a side salad:
Calories 365 // Protein 20g // Carbohydrate 47g // Fiber 7g // Total Fat 5g // Mono Fat 4g // Poly Fat 2g // Cholesterol 27mg // Sodium 1144mg
The sandwich and side salad combo was full of healthy Omega 3′s as well thanks to all that salmon!
EPA Omega 3s 104mg
DHA Omega 3s 151mg
Only 95 empty calories: 71 calories from solid fats and 24 calories from added sugars