If choosing is not your cup of tea, you will have a hard time at Temakery. This new takeaway and ‘fast casual restaurant’ is specialised in the latest healthy food trend around: bowls, wraps and hand rolls with an explosion of vitamins. Choose your base of quinoa, brown or white rice and fill it up with fish, tofu or chicken. Add your preferred veggies and healthy fats and top it off with your favourite sauce and crunchy stuff. In front of me an excellent sushi wrap of white rice was made, including tuna, seaweed, crab, avocado, a mango dressing and sesame. Loved it. I bet normal people could lunch or even dine on such a wrap, well not me. Luckily Temakery has some side dishes to choose from, one of them being a bit naughty – well, according to FIT-girls that is. I am talking about the fried Korean chicken wings: covered in a somewhat spicy sauce and sprinkled with cilantro and crushed peanuts. Meat so tender that even your toothless grandparents could eat it. For sure that naughty is da bomb!
Korean chicken wings, one portion, € 5.00
Ferdinand Bolstraat 128, South (De Pijp)
+31 (0) 6 24 13 21 45
Opening hours: Monday-Sunday 11.30am-9pm
Queuing for falafel? Yes, they do in Paris (Marais). Soon this will happen in Amsterdam (West) too, mark my words. Newcomer Bar Kauffman, a falafel spot, is one of these try before you die places around. Good vibes, lots of specialty beers, an enthusiastic crew and last but not least splendid falafel, created by an Iranian chef. This chef is all about spices and taste sensations. Try some of the olives to begin with. These little fellows are combined with garlic and the sweet-sour taste of pomegranate, making them extremely fresh. Continue with some fried balls of mashed chickpeas and decide if you want your falafel sandwich with feta, green chilli, a merguez or mango. I fall deeply for the last dish, a ‘happy-go-lucky’ pita filled with crunchy falafel, a super sweet chutney with chunks of mango, a creamy tzatziki, grilled eggplant and pomegranate seeds. Your breath smells quite bad after eating it, but you weren’t looking for romance, or did you? Eat your sandwich, have rosewater-saffron-pistachio ice, listen to James Brown and just be merry.
Falafel sandwich with mango, one, €8.00
Reinier Claeszenstraat 4B H, West
Opening hours: Tuesday-Thursday 4pm-1am, Friday 4pm-3am, Saturday noon-3am, Sunday noon-1am
Lyon, Résidence Universitaire André Allix. At that place I ate my first éclair. My Brasilian friend Fabiano gave it to me: ‘Trish, close your eyes and have a bite.’ I did what I was told. The lightest, airiest pastry I had ever tasted, an icing of pure chocolate, custard-like cream with vanilla. Hallelujah! Who created this? Years later the éclairs of Betty Blue made me scream the H-word again. In this mini-museum, patisserie and coffee spot in one you’ll find two lovely bakers: Yvette and Clara. Yvette has been baking for the last six years at her coffee place T Eten en Drinken. Clara is an enthusiastic baker too. These ladies sure know how to make éclairs. This dough of these babies consists of butter, water, eggs and flour and is supposed to puff up in the oven until it’s eventually set by the heat. What you’ll find inside depends on your mood. When you’re feeling blue you just want your fillings to be fresh and fruity, don’t you? These three are an excellent choice: passion fruit with lime, coconut with mango and rosewater with mint. Guess Betty Blue would like them too. This name refers to Clara’s favourite film. It shows the mental decline of a beautiful and vibrant woman, played by Béatrice Dalle. It’s a superb, intense French movie. One to watch.
Fruity éclairs, €3.10 (1), €14.00 (5), €25.00 (10)
Snoekjessteeg 1-3, City Centre
+31 (0) 6 1677 03 75
Opening hours: Tuesday-Friday 8am-6pm, Saturday 9am-6pm, Sunday 10am-7pm
Don’t you just love fresh mango? Sweet, velvety, juicy. Au naturel, turned into ice cream. With mango you can’t go wrong. Combine, for example, slices of mango with sticky rice drenched in coconut milk. De-li-cious. Rice and mango are made to match. That explains why sushi with mango is good too. Some weeks ago a food stylist I’ve worked with raved about Sushi Day. ‘Unlike similar places the chefs at Sushi Day roll and fill the sushi the moment you order. It’s always super fresh.’ I visited the place and, yes, he was right: it’s as fresh as it gets. Danny, the chatty and friendly owner of this takeaway and delivery, is passionate about his products and clients. ‘Most of my regulars are women. A good thing! Women are usually more critical than men.’ The sushi is made by his wife and two other experienced cooks. His wife learned the art of sushi making in several Japanese restaurants in Hong Kong. Wondering what sushi to buy? Let the sunshine in and order the ebi mango roll! Silky soft textures of avocado and mango, prawns with a bite, slightly salty tobiko (flying fish roe) and compact, soft rice. This bite evokes memories of sun, tropical beaches and azure blue seas.
I admire people who eat a hard-core salad and keep smiling. If I have to eat something like that – lettuce, lettuce, onion, one cherry tomato – I get cranky. It feels ‘rabbit’ to chew on such a salad. But larb or laap, well, that’s an entirely different story. While travelling through Laos and Thailand I ate this salad very often. There are numerous variations on the larb theme. You’ll find larb with meat– beef, chicken, duck, water buffalo – but also with fish or mushrooms. No matter what version you eat, this salad is always light, healthy and full of flavour. My favorite larb address in Amsterdam: Kinnaree, a stylish Thai restaurant and takeaway. I always order laap ped, a spicy combination of minced duck, cilantro, lemon juice, mint, red onion, garlic and lettuce. It takes the cook about ten minutes to make it. Not that’s a drag to wait longer. It’s always nice to have a chat here, for example about the benefits of durian, the King of Fruits. In Asia larb is eaten as a side dish, but I like to serve it as a starter, followed by a curry with tofu and mango for dessert.
Kinnaree Laap ped, one portion, €14.50
Eerste Anjeliersdwarsstraat 14, City Centre (Jordaan)
+31 (0) 20 627 71 53
Opening hours: Sunday-Thursday 5.30pm-10.00pm, Friday-Saturday 5.30pm-10.30pm