Archive for January, 2012

January 31, 2012

Cookingbooks or cookbooks?

I collect cookingbooks. (or cookbooks?) Anyway… books with recipes.

My French, Spanish and the Balkan languages I practise with the help of cookbooks. Yes, and (sometimes) dictionaries. I would like to have cookingbooks from as many countries as possible, but not just any cookbooks, NO, the most complete ones, with the most authentic recipes. The books that have been passed on for a generation or more already, from grandmom to daughter and so on. Even when not cooking or when not hungry, I go through my cookingbooks,  ’cause it makes me happy.

My favourites are;

My wishlist contains;

The Silver spoon but of course in Italian; Il cucchiaio d’argento, Het Groot Surinaams Kookboek, an old Dutch cookingbook (still trying to figure out which is the best…), a good Chinese cookingbook (no this one not in its own language…), the best Indonesian cookbook (don’t know which is the best yet, have a lot of smal ones which are not the best…), a good Turkish cookingbook and whatever YOU recommend me…..

What is the best cookbook/cookingbook/recipebook from your country?

Which book best represents the cuisine your country has to offer? Which book do you regularly use? Which book did your mom and grandmom use? which book from your country should I absolutely add to my collection?

Oh yeah and;

January 27, 2012

Che Sudaka – more free musicheta!

Did you enjoy the cd 5 do 12 from Dubioza Kolektiv? HAVEN’T GOT IT? Read my post over HERE to check how to download the cd FOR FREE.

I’ve got another cool one for you! Woohoo 🙂

Years ago I went to a performance of Che Sudaka in The Winston in Amsterdam. IT WAS CRAZY! The Winston is cool, if you don’t mind a punky atmosphere. It’s in the Red Light District, has a bar, a ho(s)tel (where pornmovies have been shot!), happy hours and a club. I recommend it (the club and bar that is, never seen the hotel from the inside) if you’re not into posh clubs. Che Sudaka is a six-piece band, composed of South Americans residents in Barcelona. They  play “mestizaje music” (Latin Alternative), a style combining traditional South American and Spanish styles with influences from ska, reggae, rock and world music. They have collaborated on projects with amongst others Manu Chao and Amparanoia. Their texts are, like  Dubioza Kollektive’s texts, critical & about the world, injustice & life.

ANYWAY tomorrow night Che Sudaka is performing in the De Melkweg in Amsterdam. GO if you’re ready to jump and feel energetic!

Che Sudaka

Che Sudaka

Untill then, you can enjoy their music at home!


 Click HERE to download Che Sudaka’s cd for free.


January 26, 2012

Japanese in Amsterdam

As you might recall, Ms Hiroko Shimbo asked me (over HERE, scroll down for the comments) to research the Japanese community in Amsterdam. She mentioned that years ago when she visited Amsterdam, she used to buy ingredients to prepare Japanese food in Chinatown. Nowadays there’s a modest but very good offer of Japanese stores. Japanese people in the Netherlands include expatriates from Japan and their Japanese citizen children, as well as Dutch citizens of Japanese ancestry. There were 7,524 persons of Japanese origin living in the Netherlands as of 2009, according to the figures of the Statistics Netherlands office.In general, they are transient foreign residents employed by Japanese companies. According to a 1996 survey, 80% of Japanese in The Netherlands consist of Japanese company employees and their families. Another 10% are Japanese civil servants on overseas postings, researchers, and students. The remainder were long-term residents, largely Japanese women married to Dutch men. Most live in Amsterdam. However, there are also about 150 living in Maastricht, mostly employees of Mitsubishi and their spouses and children.

The best places I know to buy Japanese ingredients are the following two;

Both stores have messageboards, flyers and posters of Japan-related events in and around Amsterdam. There are a few more Japan related organisations in and around Amsterdam;

And of course most famous Japanese restaurants in Amsterdam are Yamazato; and Sazanka; in the Okura Hotel. Unfortunately I have not visited these yet. Yamazato is ran by chef Akira Oshima, who became the first Japanese chef in the Netherlands to be awarded a Michelin star – and the restaurant has snapped one up every year since. Oshima’s achievements were recognized in 2006, when he received a Dutch royal decoration.

The Okura Hotel also has a culinary studio and offers Japanese workshops and cooking classes.

More info on Hiroko Shimbo;

Raging Asian Women Tako Drummers at Muhtadi International Drumming Festival photo by Muhtadi at Flickr

Raging Asian Women Tako Drummers at Muhtadi International Drumming Festival photo by Muhtadi at Flickr


Do you know more Japanese places in The Netherlands that are worth checking out?

And 1 more question; does anyone know if it’s possible for me to have lessons in Taiko drumming in The Netherlands?

January 25, 2012


These dudes absolutely ROCK & they’re putting Croatia on the map.

2CELLOS’s meteoric success started as soon as former cello rivals Luka Sulic and Stjepan Hauser decided to join forces. In January 2011, they uploaded a cello version of Smooth Criminal by Michael Jackson on Youtube. Within just a few weeks, video received over 5 million hits and became the biggest sensation in history of classical and crossover music. Their debut album features unique 2CELLOS versions of well-known rock and pop songs.

Their music speaks for itself, so no more words from me. Let me know what you think!




More info, tourdates, to order the cd;

January 24, 2012

De Huiselijkheid – unique and sustainable furniture & more

Do you remember I explained you the meaning of the Dutch word Gezelligheid? (HERE my explanatory post if you just “tuned in”)

I came across a really cool webshop with a beautiful philosophy; De Huiselijkheid. Huiselijkheid can (almost) be translated as “homey-ness”. The word looks like gezelligheid and can also not exactly be translated. It refers to a “gezellige domestic situation”.

De Huiselijkheid is a webshop with original and unique furniture and other eye catchers for in and around your home. Monique, Dick and Irma of De Huiselijkheid search, find and fix furniture that deserve a second life. All items they sell are besides old and beautiful, functional too and everything is restored with ecologically sustainable paint. From barok and chic to industrial and sturdy – they’ve got it all. Are you looking for something particular and you can’t find it on the market? Do you need to rent furniture for e.g. photo- or movie-productions? Do you want something designed especially for you? Do you need help restoring old furnitures? Redesigning your interior? Are you interested in doing a workshop regarding (fixing) furnitures? Contact de Huiselijkheid.

You can order directly from the webshop (if you live in The Netherlands), and against a delivery fee (Contact de Huiselijkheid for prices and possibilities), your ordered items can even be delivered to your house. 

The 3 previously mentioned founders of De Huiselijkheid feel privileged to be entrepreneurial, here for they reserve time and means to to take their responsibility to society; this year they support the Reumafonds (Rheuma foundation) in The Netherlands, a foundation that aims to help people to have a better life with rheuma, because they know what the effect of this disease can be.

De Huiselijkheid

De Huiselijkheid

The showroom of De Huiselijkheid is located in  Vijfhuizen in the county of Haarlemmermeer, about 20 kilometers of Amsterdam. ,

January 24, 2012

xxx in Amsterdam

Are you one of those people that think the XXX in Amsterdam stand for porn? HA YOU’RE WRONG! When written under a letter, email or sms, the 3 x’es stand for 3 kisses. The Dutch give 3 kisses. For hello, for bye and to EVERYONE. First day at work in the new year? 3 kisses for every colleague! 40 people sitting in a circle on a family birthday? 3 kisses for everyone!

So what’s up with the XXX?

The coat of arms of Amsterdam is the official symbol of the city of Amsterdam. It consists of a red shield and a black pale with three silver Saint Andrew’s Crosses, the Imperial Crown of Austria, two golden lions, and the motto of Amsterdam.  The crosses and the crown can be found as decorations on different locations in the city.

Some people say the three saltires represent the three dangers of ancient Amsterdam: fire, floods, and the Black Death. That theory however has no historical basis. The crosses might have their origin in the shield of the noble family Persijn. The knight Jan Persijn was ‘lord’ of Amstelledamme (Amsterdam) from 1280 to 1282. In the escutcheons of Dordrecht and Delft, two other cities inHolland, the pale refers to water. In analogy with this, the black pale in the escutcheon of Amsterdam would refer to the river Amstel. Both the colours and the crosses are also found in the escutcheons of two towns near Amsterdam: the village of Ouder-Amstel on the banks of the river Amstel to the southeast, and Nieuwer-Amstel (now the suburb Amstelveen) to the southwest. Both villages were also the property of the Persijn family.

During the 1941 February strike in Amsterdam, for the first time in Europe non-Jewish people protested against the persecution of Jews by the Nazi regime. Queen Wilhelmina of The Netherlands wanted to remember the role of the citizens of Amsterdam during World War II and created a motto consisting of the Dutch words “Heldhaftig, Vastberaden, Barmhartig”, meaning “Valiant, Steadfast, Compassionate”. On March 29, 1947, Wilhelmina presented the motto as part of the coat of arms of Amsterdam to the city government.

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Thx Wikipedia for text & pics.

January 23, 2012

Dubioza Kolektiv II

Remember I introduced you to (click) Dubioza Kolektiv?

Dubioza Kolektiv is a band from Bosnia and Herzegovina, founded in 2003 by Adis Zvekić and Almir Hasanbegović (former members of Gluho Doba aka Def Age from Zenica) and Brano Jakubović and Vedran Mujagić (former members of Ornamenti from Sarajevo). The band was later joined by guitarist Armin Bušatlić, drummer Senad Šuta, sound engineer Dragan Jakubović, and in 2011 by saxophonist Mario Ševarac.

Dubioza is known for their fresh take on hip-hop, reggae, dub, rock and Bosnian folklore. Initially, the concept of the band came through an urgent need to voice the problematic issues in Bosnian society, while also showing the rest of the world that life in the Balkans exists outside of the familiar and overused media stereotypes. Understandably then, many of Dubioza Kolektiv’s lyrics revolve around themes of peace, understanding and tolerance, alongside an extreme criticism of nationalism and injustice; but what gives these lyrics weight is that they speak with the authority of direct experience.

I told you their website was down, it’s back.

AND HOW COOL IS THIS; You can download their previous cd “5 do 12” (5 to 12) HERE. Just choose if you want the medium MP3 quality/ high quality MP3 or CD quality, the rest speaks for itself (Save file to computer).

Thank you Dubioza for the cool music you make, and for giving us your cd!

Dubioza Kolektiv

Dubioza Kolektiv

January 23, 2012

100 followers! Dear readers,

first of all I’d like to thank ALL OF YOU for reading my posts and supporting me.

Since I was able to write, I’ve always written about things I liked. I contributed to the schoolpaper in highschool for years, I’ve written many stories (I always dreamt of writing a book), filled many notebooks, and one day I was invited by a Dutch girls’ magazine to interview a famous Beverly Hills 90210 actor, after which I was shocked when the interview was published. The journalist wrote down so many lies! I then decided I wanted to become a journalist so i could write honestly.

Years later I failed the entrance test of the School for journalism twice and then decided to …..screw…. the test and do something else with my life. I wanted to only write about things I liked and I didn’t want to write in assignment for anyone anyway. I found a college I liked and loved the direction I chose.  Besides homework, papers and essays, I didn’t write much since then.

When I decided to start a blog, I decided to write about everything I like and here’s where we are today. My blog has been viewed 5110 times since I started in April 2011 (Check out my first post HERE!) and I’m getting more and more ideas what to write about.

Last but not least, a special thx to my followers ( I’d never think there would be people who actually read almost everything I write… ), in particular to Trinzic , You are my 100th follower! This means a lot to me!



January 20, 2012

Dichtbij Nederland & Amsterdam Klezmer Band @ Paradiso

I won a competition and got to go to the concert of the Amsterdam Klezmer Band at Paradiso last night! More about that later, first; I promised if I win the competition I will write about them so hereby; Thank you Dichtbij Nederland (Close to The Netherlands) of NPS! Dichtbij Nederland is a daily radiomagazine about the multicultural community in The Netherlands, in which also important news from the  “motherland” comes close to the listener. It’s an informative radioshow with music,  debates and the latest news. Every workingday live from 21 – 24 hr at Radio 5 at the NTR. In The Netherlands to be found at 747 AM, outside NL to be listened online (website below).

Dichtbij Nederland copyright NPS

Dichtbij Nederland copyright NPS


So………. back to the competition; The question was, Which city in The Netherlands is called Mokum? Well Amsterdam ofcourse!  The name Mokum dates from the Jewish history of Amsterdam and the meaning of Mokum  is city or place in Hebrew. It still is a popular petname for Amsterdam and it’s also the name of the cd that the Amsterdam Klezmer Band released yesterday.

The party I went to yesterday was the Dutch release party of the new live CD “MOKUM”  by the Amsterdam Klezmer Band, as well as the kick off of their 15- years- anniversary-tour AND the 1000th concert! I had never seen them live but I love their music and ofcourse they are much better live!  These guys are super energetic, amazing musicians and very funny. The concert was at my favourite club; Amsterdam’s best and most beautiful club – former church Paradiso.

Paradiso, Amsterdam Klezmer Band

Paradiso, Amsterdam Klezmer Band


When they started to play their new single (forgot the name, was it Mokum?) The audience was asked to take out their mobiles, film the performance, and send it to the band today, some people were even allowed on stage to film. I filmed the whole song but for some reason (no, not that one 😉 ) the Iphone filmed everything upside down, so I won’t post it here (at least not untill I…ehm someone.. manage(s) to turn it). I’ll send it to the band as soon as I’ve uploaded it and will ask them if they have someone technical to turn it around. Anyway when they make the official clip for the new single, they’re planning to use the footage of all the clips the audience made yesterday! I’ll keep you updated when it comes out and maybe we can see my shots in the clip 🙂


Amsterdam Klezmer Band -Mokum

Amsterdam Klezmer Band -Mokum



Most of the AKB repertory has been created by the band members themselves, who all without exception contribute musically to an ever-growing melting-pot of infectious Balkan/Gypsy/Klezmer cross-over grooves. In this manner the band endeavours to breathe new life into the Eastern-European Balkan, Klezmer and Gypsy music tradition.


Amsterdam Klezmer Band (19-01-2012@Paradiso)

Amsterdam Klezmer Band (19-01-2012@Paradiso)


The Amsterdam Klezmer Band consists of;
Jasper de Beer: double bass, guitar banjo, backing vocals
Job Chajes: alto saxophone, vocals
Alec Kopyt: vocals, percussions
Gijs Levelt: trumpet
Joop van der Linden: trombone, percussions
Janfie van Strien: clarinet, backing vocals
Theo van Tol: accordion

And last but not least; here’s one of my facourites, a golden oldie, ENJOY!


More info;


January 19, 2012

The naturalists. Food=fashion dinner experience

I received an invitation from De Culinaire Werkplaats (Read about my 1st introduction to this place HERE ).

I would have chosen De Culinaire Werkplaats to win the Puur Restaurant Week last year for sure (Read what I wrote about that HERE) , but as one of two founders/owners Eric Meursing told me; It’s okay, we’re not a restaurant anyway. And that’s true. De Culinaire Werkplaats (The Culinary Workingplace) is a guaranteed unique food experience.

Curious? Cool! ‘Cause founding mother Marjolein (Wintjes) and founding father Eric allowed me to share my invitation with YOU, my dearest readers…..

De Culinaire Werkplaats presents; The Naturalists, a food=fashion forward dinner experience.
Have you ever put your teeth into a colour and texture forecast?

From 20 ’till 28 January 2012 you can experience an unforgettable “food=fashion forward dinner experience” at De Culinaire Werkplaats. For the 6th time this artistic eating initiative in Amsterdam is one of the participating locations of the DownTown programma (The DownTown programme) of the Amsterdam Fashion Week. This years’ project is called; The Naturalists. Especially for this Amsterdam Fashion Week culinary designers Marjolein Wintjes and Eric Meursing have created a tasty foodspecial and a few collages in which they “caught time in a colour and texture forecast for fashion fabrics in food in 2013 and after“. The result is an exciting food=fashion discoverytour in which the relationship with nature is central, in order to ask attention for our vulnerable ecosystem.

Food equals fashion; the naturalists.

  • The foodspecial consists of 5 dishes; 3 savoury followed by 2 sweet. The 5 dishes are a playful interpretation of a colour and texture forecast in which the global trends  new romanticism, nesting, down-to-earth, new landscaping and ethnic chic will reflect.
  • The exposition in movement exists of collages and contains amongst others samples of edible conceptual fashionfabrics and colour/texture code per trend. As always it’s an exposition in movement, which will continue to develop itself during the fashion week, so you can also experience “the making of”.

Practical info:

  • When? January 20, 21, 25, 26, 27 & 28 2012;
  • Openinghours? Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 17.00 – 22.00 h & Saturday from 12.00 – 22.00 h;
  • Outside openinghours? After reserving open on appointment for groups of minimum 15 pax;
  • Where? De Culinaire Werkplaats is located at the Fannius Scholtenstraat 10 huis, 1051 EX Amsterdam, The Netherlands;
  • Reservation? Yes, please! Dial 0031-(0) 6 54646576 or send an e-mail to;
  • Price? You decide afterwards. For any eatingexperience at the Culinaire Werkplaats YOU decide what your experience was worth. Visiting the exposition is for free.
  •  More info?
Invitation the naturalists - De Culinaire Werkplaats

Invitation the naturalists - De Culinaire Werkplaats

They definitely got me curious. I still don’t know what to expect, I think I just need to pass by and try ‘n taste.
How about you? If you decide to go too, please come back here and share your experience with us!