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Netherlands Antilles - Cooking and Food[]

Overview of Dutch Antillean Cuisine History[]

First people that ever came and visited this country lands were the Spanish in the 15th century. Netherlands Antilles has a various and complex cuisine. Due to the great complexity of this country cuisine one can always find here different dishes to satisfy its tastes. Most of the influences that the Netherlands Antilles cuisine felt over the time from different people are stil being used nowadays. Creole dishes or Pelau dish, which is a unique combination of rice, meet and peas are made using manly ingredients with Spanish origins. The African slaves brought different types of roots and vegetables like yams or Dashee into the Netherlands Antilles cuisine. Finally two other countries that had a huge influence over the Netherlands Antilles cuisine are India and China. Nowadays India is still the main provider of some exquisite spices and exotic ingredients.

Cuisines of Netherlands Antilles[]

Map of Netherlands Antilles- Click to enlarge

Netherlands Antilles are a group of island situated in the Caribbean sea. This country’s cuisine reflects perfectly the great mixture of people and culture existing here and how each one brings along their own influence. During the time people like French, Dutch, English and Spanish left their mark over Netherlands Antilles cuisine. This way traditional food customs vary from one island to another, but despite this they all are made using as a base the Caribbean Creole cuisine. One of the most famous dish in this country is called Funchi, which is a pancake made of maize flour. Any traditional Netherlands Antilles meal should consist in Funchi and Pan Bati dishes combined with goat stew (carni stoba) and garnished with different types of hot spicy sauces. Black cake (bolo pretu) is one of the favorites desserts for special occasions on the main island.

Food in Daily Life. Traditional food customs differ between the islands, but all of them are variations of Caribbean Creole cuisine. Typical traditional foods are funchi, a maize porridge, and pan bati, a pancake made of maize flour. Funchi and pan bati combined with carni stoba (a goat stew) form the basis of the traditional meal. Bolo pretu (black cake) is prepared only for special occasions. Fast food and international cuisine have become more popular since the establishment of tourism. the country's cuisine is a true reflection of the diversity of the people, which brings to the fore touches of the French, the Spanish, the Dutch and the English. Some of the island's favorite foods are: callaloo soup (Caribbean Greens), Crab Backs (crab meat stuffed in shells), bakes (Johnny Cakes), Phillipsburg pancakes (pumpkin flapjacks), coconut sugar cake, butter cookies and coconut turnovers. In the streets of Marigot, you'll find the latest in French fashions and cuisine. Along the shore, small huts serve hot and spicy jerk Chicken. Browse the open-air market for succulent fruits and local crafts or sail to a neighboring island for the day. Sample cuisine infused with West Indian spices, or check out the local nightclubs and casinos.

Preparation Methods for Dutch Antillean Cooking[]

Netherlands Antilles adopted many preparation methods from the French and Spanish cuisine. Also this country cuisine uses elements borrowed from their neighbors traditions and developed from their own traditional dishes. While there are no specific or unique preparation methods for Netherlands Antilles cooking, we should point out that attention to detail is important in the Netherlands Antilles cuisine. Using the right amount of spices for example is essential – either for spicing up the taste or for coloring the dish. The diversity of vegetables and cereals found in Netherlands Antilles is also noticed in the delicious dishes belonging to their cuisine. The visual attractiveness of the dish is also important, and a balance between colors and proportion differentiates. Each traditional dish has a special cooking method, which is more or less general in all of Netherlands Antilles’s regions. Meat is one of the main elements of most Netherlands Antilles dishes and cured and smoked hams are often parts of delicious dishes.

Special Equipment for Dutch Antillean Cooking[]

In order to cook a traditional genuine Netherlands Antilles meal one might find helpful using all kind of cake pans, can openers, colanders, egg rings, poachers and holders, food dishers & portioners, food pans & food containers. Other kitchen utensils, such as food scales, food scoops and fryer baskets & accessories, help the Netherlands Antilles cuisine to develop some of the most sophisticated dishes. You should consider insulated food carriers if you are transporting the food and a full set of kitchen linens and uniforms if you wish to look like a pro. Here are a few other items that will come handy while cooking Netherlands Antilles food: juicers, kitchen knives, kitchen slicers, kitchen thermometers, measuring cups & measuring spoons, miscellaneous utensils, mixing bowls and skimmers & strainers. Essential utensils like serving spoons, spatulas, forks, turners, scrapers and tongs should also be part of your cooking "arsenal".

Dutch Antillean Food Traditions and Festivals[]

Netherlands Antilles is a country spread all over the Caribbean Sea having many small islands. The population of these islands is very diverse and covers different ethnicity and cultures. Due to this great ethical mix holidays are being celebrated in this country in many different ways. Some of the favorite dishes during the celebration of any holiday are: Crabs Back, which is crab meat stuffed in shells, callaloo soup made with seafood, Phillipsburg pancakes, butter cookies, coconut sugar cake and coconut turnovers. Fruits are also very appreciated during any celebration and tasteful salads, appetizers or desserts are being cooked then. Although traditional food vary from one Island to another they are all variations of the same cuisine the Caribbean Creole one.

People in Dutch Antillean Food[]

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The Netherlands Antilles chefs are cooking some of the most genuine and delicious dishes in the Caribbean Sea. This chefs who creatively use the basic ingredients and cooking method for traditional Netherlands Antilles dishes and create original and delicious food variations. Netherlands Antilles chefs are passionate about their traditional dishes and they enjoy presenting them to foreigners who has never tasted them before. Whether they are cooking dishes that go back in time for centuries or brand new, modern dishes, Netherlands Antilles chefs take pride in what they do, and this is readily noticeable in the unforgettable taste of their cooking.