Monday, July 2, 2018

Albert Cuyp Market

Yesterday we spent a few hours exploring the Albert Cuyp Market. The market has been in the same spot since 1905 and according to their website, it's the biggest day market in Europe - with 260 stands. We didn't see all of them, but the market had something for everyone: cheap souvenirs, clothes, books, flowers, fresh fish, fruits & vegetables,  sweets, fabric, toys...  I really liked that shoppers appeared to be a good mix of locals and tourists.

We had fun rooting around the different stands looking for bargains. For many items, the prices were negotiable. K got herself a €3.50 book for €1.00.

The fabric prices were fixed - €8.95 per meter for each of these knits. It's a good thing we only have carry on-sized suitcases, or I would have bought a whole lot more! There were several fabric (stoffen in Dutch) shops in the market. Some sold drapery material, one quilting cottons, and another had a little bit of everything. Lots of them looked small at first, but then zigged and zagged way back into a building. S found some sweatshirt fabric he liked and K found some cute cotton and asked for shorts. She really wanted some tulip fabric for a maxi dress, but since we didn't have a pattern and had no idea how much to buy, we had to pass.

The fresh-squeezed drinks were interesting. Many of them contained fresh ginger and they were incredibly strong - like open-up-your-sinuses-strong. S opted to try the orange-ginger, but wasn't too keen on it. Luckily, I love ginger and was happy to finish it for him. Later in the day he also tried banana-pineapple-yogurt, which he liked a whole lot better.

While we were there we had to try fresh stroopwafels. I mean, c'mon!

We watched the Stroopwafel Man roll the dough into a ball and then press it in the wafelmaker. When it was done, but still hot, he sliced it in half.

Next, he coated one of the halves with caramel for K and me, while S opted for caramel and nutella. (The Dutch appear to love nutella. We see it as an option on practically every sweet thing: cookies, croissants, pancakes and wafles.)

Grandma, on the other hand, was more interested in finding something for dinner. She found some lovely red snapper at one stand and fresh asparagus at another. 

As we were leaving the market we noticed this stall. The Dutch Cookieman's stand had the biggest macaroons we'd ever seen - they were the size of a scoop of ice cream! (My mom called them  macaroons, but he refers to them as Belgische Cocosbols on his website.) They were amazing; giant chewy balls of coconutty goodness - with the bottom outside edges just a little but more cooked than the inside  - they were absolutely perfect. And at three huge cookies for €5.00, the price couldn't be beat. My  even now my mouth is watering just remembering how good they were. Dang it, now I want another one...

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