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Bernie's Tips May 15 - 17

This week the country slowly opens up again. ASH is seeing students on campus again, and we can all get a haircut again, providing we schedule an appointment! For the coming weeks, I advise you to regularly check the websites of the Dutch museums, amusement parks, and zoos. If they open, this will be under strict conditions: early online reservations, sometimes for members only, etc.

In the meantime, I have found a GREAT website. This organization takes you on a virtual safari. It's designed for kids, but I feel anyone can enjoy this, regardless of age!

Over the past few weeks, you've probably spent a lot of time in the kitchen. In any case, I hope you've discovered the Dutch (or northern European) white asparagus! If you haven't, you must - they are absolutely superb! Unlike the green ones, the white asparagus can only be enjoyed for a brief period of about 8 weeks in the spring. Compared to the green asparagus, the white ones are much more refined in flavor. They are white because they grow underneath (not above) the soil.

The simplest way of preparing them is as follows:
Buy at least 10-12 asparagus (the chef always gets the extra one!) per person, all about the same size, and peel them.  Cut one inch from the bottom, rinse, and place in a pot of water with a twist of lemon juice, some sugar, and a pinch of salt. Boil for 5 minutes, leave them in the water for 20-25 minutes, then drain them and lay them on a towel. Be gentle, as once cooked they are very delicate! For a traditional Dutch meal, eat them with a hard-boiled egg and ham or salmon, and of course, with some "nieuwe krieltjes" (new small potatoes). 

For more Dutch recipe ideas, visit The Dutch Table and enjoy some cooking together this weekend. And now I am hungry for white asparagus, yet from where I am writing this message, I can only get green ones!

Enjoy and "eet smakelijk" (enjoy your meal)!

Bernie