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Dessert in the Netherlands revolves around cream, in all of its sugary guises, and the Dutch have created an elaborate confectionary culture to satisfy their cravings for this delicious dairy product. Here’s a rundown of the most iconic Dutch cream-based delicacies.
This peculiar word actually translates into English as whipped cream and is the principle component of many Dutch delicacies. While slagroom may resemble regular confectionary cream, it is slightly fluffier than other European variants and contains considerably higher amounts of sugar. The cream is commonly served on top of coffee, hot chocolate and cakes, or eaten alongside a bowl of fresh fruit.
To create tompouce, bakers prepare two pieces of dense puff pastry and then fill these layers with a generous portion of pastry cream, creating a delicious, sugary sandwich. This construction is topped with pink icing and a thick line of slagroom. Dutch people typically eat tompouce with their bare hands and take bites out of the cake’s sides in an attempt to avoid the inevitable mess that insues.
Although precursors to these slagroom-filled, chocolate balls have been around in the Netherlands for over a century, their current form was perfected in the 1920s by a baker living in Den Bosch. Bossche Bollen are fairly similar to French chocolate eclairs, but are rolled into spheres rather than oblongs. This doughnut-sized ball of choux pastry is packed with slagroom and then dunked into a bowl of liquid chocolate, glazing it with a crunchy outer shell.
During birthdays in the Netherlands guests generally expect the appearance of a garishly decorated slagroomtaart, complete with chocolate or strawberry sprinkles and other larger sweets. This creamy pastry is made from several sheets of puff pastry that are layered between thick sections of slagroom.
Vla is a custard-like pudding that comes in a variety of different flavors. Dutch supermarkets tend to sell the dessert by the carton, allowing people to keep a fresh supply of vla in their fridges at all times. Although the dessert can be eaten by itself, it is common for Dutch people to serve it with a thick dollop of slagroom that floats on top of the vla’s gelatinous surface.
While appeltaart might not contain slagroom, the dessert is traditionally eaten with ample helpings of whipped cream. The cake is typically baked in a deep dish that allows it to rise to copious proportions. This crumbly delight contains massive chunks of apples that caramelise into a mouthwatering filling.
Roombroodjes might be the simplest dessert ever invented and consist of two key ingredients: a sweetened bread roll and massive quantities of pastry cream. Its main, bread-based component is stuffed full of cream and then covered in an ample sprinkling of confectionary sugar, resulting in a delicious, uncomplicated treat that can be paired with almost any meal.