Saturday, October 9, 2010

Boerenkool met worst

It looks like it froze for the first time last night. Bad news for the garden's summer vegetables, but this is the time that other veggies benefit from cold nights, like kale. The Dutch have a very solid and varied repertoire of winter dishes: solid in the sense that they all consist of the culinary trinity (meat, vegetables and potatoes) and varied because well....because there is scarcely a thing the Dutch don't add to their famous "stamppot". Literally meaning 'stomped pot", stamppot is a dish that consists of boiled potatoes mashed with a raw or cooked vegetable. The meat is either served on top, on the side or cut into small pieces and mixed in. If the choice of protein generates any type of pan juice or jus, it will be served in a small hollow made on top of the mashed potato dish, the so-called "kuiltje jus" (kinda like a pothole in the road but different).

Those that know me well will be surprised to see that I served up mashed potatoes with kale, a dish simply called "boerenkool". There are few things in the food world that I don't care for, and one of them is boerenkool. Or was, should I say. Somehow the American kale is not half as bitter as the Dutch one is, so after preparing this dish with Michiel for Idaho's Melting Pot, I was pleasantly surprised, enough even to go home and cook it for myself two days later.

Kale is a dark-leaf vegetable that will add plenty of nutrition to your diet: it is riddled with vitamins and minerals and contributes plenty of protein. The butter and the kielbasa....not so much.

Kale with kielbasa
3 bunches of kale (or 1 lb)
6 large potatoes
3 tablespoons of butter
1/2 cup of milk, warmed
1 smoked kielbasa
Salt

Cut the leaves off the stems and slice the leaves into narrow strips. Peel the potatoes, quarter them and place them in a Dutch oven. Add water to barely cover the potatoes, then put the kale on top, add the kielbasa. Cover the pot with a lid and bring to a boil. Boil on a low flame for about 20 minutes or until the potatoes are done. Remove the kielbasa, pour off any cooking liquid that may remain and mash the vegetables with a fork or a potato masher. Add the butter and the milk and stir the whole into a creamy consistency. Slice the kielbasa and place it on top of the stamppot. Serve with mustard if desired.


22 comments:

  1. This is one of my favorites and with the sausage I'll bet it is really yummy.

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  2. Just found your blog as I was looking for a recipe for griesmeelpudding. I too, come from NL but now live in the USA. Very excited to find all your recipes and such! Thanks for sharing these bits of home!

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  3. Occasionally my aunt can get a rookworst to me and its so delicious with a Nice boerenkool stampot!

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  4. When you buy kale it should have a blueish color.
    Light green kale suffered from lack of fertilizer,
    When you get it home i like to wash it immediately, lots of times there are some bugs in it. Then soak it in water for a while and put it wet in a plastic bag and freeze it. The freezing will help to make the tough leaves brittle and make the mashing later on a breeze.

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  5. can you buy kale in canada

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    1. fdewind1949@shaw.caMarch 13, 2014 at 10:56 AM

      I just bought some kale at Safeway, I used to get 'gerookte worst' at the Hema store in Amsterdam, when Iived there, I have not found any smoked sausage that compares in Canada. If you know of any, please let me know.

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    2. Kale is available all over the Lower Mainland (Vancouver); often multiple varieties.

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    3. hi we make this with broccoli here in ontario and the kids call it green potatoes so yummy Make gravy with it and we use presidents choice cheese sausage

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  6. Thank u for providing recepies here! Just returned from Holland and would like to throw a dinner party in the Dutch way. Can u tell the name of the dish that contains minced meat and is topped with mashed potato and baked in the oven? I was served that among other things once. Thanks in advance. Anne Isokuortti from Finland

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  7. My boyfriend is Dutch and ones he cooked for me this vegetable with worst. It was so delitious!

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  8. I just came across your blog and love it! I am born and raised in Amsterdam and now live in Utah since 2003. Love it to find all these receipes and yes my family (American husband and our daughter, son in law and our son) love boerenkool. When I make it I also put chopped bacon and the bacon grease through it. (like my mom used to make it)yumm!

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  9. Safeways in Spokane, WA sells smoked sausage which is a good match to the Dutch smoked sausage that we (the Dutch) know and love.
    My thought is that if it's sold in the wasteland that is eastern Washington, surely it will be available elsewhere.

    However, if you can't get your hands on smoked sausage, do go for the kielbasa.

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    1. Thanks for the tip, Friti! We do love our smoked sausage, don't we :-)

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  10. I have always used canned kale for this, but next time I will try fresh! As for sausage, I live in BC, Canada, and there is really good rookworst to be found, thankfully. :) Thanks!

    Esther Vandergugten

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  11. As a fellow Dutchman in Idaho, I was always taught not to harvest the boerenkool from the garden until after the first frost, because the freezing and thawing reduces the bitterness.

    Since the local kale is probably trucked in from California or Mexico, and has never seen anything like a frost, I do what my mother taught me: boil the kale separately in a 50/50 mix of water and vinegar. Couple of tablespoons of each, about. The acid balances out any bitterness.

    Finally, we chop up a couple of pieces of bacon, pan fry, and add in the mix. My girlfriend swore she would never eat kale, and she just came back with a big plate of seconds ;) .


    PS, Costco now sells baby kale in a 1.5 lb bag. How cool is that!

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  12. Jan, maybe a small tip that can help out too: We used to grow our own kale and as both me and my sis love it we always wanted to eat it as soon as possible. To simulate the frost my mom used to put the kale in the freezer and then let it thaw again before boiling it. I could never taste the difference :)

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  13. For 35 years I've been trying to figure out what to use for " Boerenkool" Tried broccoli. I'll try Kale this week.

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  14. First time I have scored a decent amount of kale here in Queensland Australia. Can't wait to cook it up tonight as I haven't had a feed of it for 15 years. In Holland Mum also used to serve up gerkins as a side dish and she used some of the gerkin fluid in the mash if it was to dry. Gives a nice tangy twist,

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    1. My mother always added vinegar to give it the same tangy twist. for me it's not done right without the vinegar added.

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  15. I have heaps of kale growing. My Mam got a Rookworst for me so I can make this for my family. I am about to try Boerenkool out on my 4 and 8 year old kids. I am in Australia, wish me luck!

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  16. So I just figured out that Kale is Boerenkool lol. I've lived in the States for 11 years now and thought that finding dutch items and being able to introduce my friends and family to food that I grew up with, was close to impossible. Then I stumbled upon this awesome blog!!!! Thank you so much for bringing The Netherlands a little closer :) I'm so excited to start on some of the home cooking that I grew up with!!!!

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