- Our very first home-grown radish! It was delicious!
- I took some pictures of our friends house for AirBnB. Click here to check it out, if you’re ever in Haarlem or Amsterdam I recommend staying here!
- My favorite picture of us. I’m thinking of framing it.
- One of our dreams is to one day publish our own cookbook. Slowly we’re collecting recipes. As part of our research we rarely eat the same meal twice and we try to cook something new at least 4 times a week. This week we made this roasted parsnip and apple soup. Surprisingly tasty.
- Every sunday a bunch of food trucks gather near our house and cook up delicious things. This sunday was curry, ravioli and quesadilla’s
- Nick and the ravioli.
- What do you call a food truck that serves drinks? A drink truck? A beer truck?
- Nick never fails to make me laugh, even when I’m in the middle of a big gulp of beer.
- Angie makes really cool stuff
Our friend has the best kitchen in the world and a house to match. Today we went over to her house to snap some pictures for her AirBnB profile. I’ll share the link with you as soon as it’s up. When you’re ever in Haarlem or Amsterdam, rent this house. Trust me, you won’t regret it.
Every time I miss a blogging deadline, which is often, I think about quitting this blog. I want to quit because I let myself and you down. But at the end of the day, I love blogging (and you) too much to quit. I believe in the power of blogging, sharing all that I love and building a tiny internet community filled with awesome people. And you know what, it’s all about showing up. So here I am. Posting a weekend link pack once again on a Monday night. Enjoy!
SO good // The Crossroads of Should and Must
I haven’t started it yet but reading this made me even more excited for this season // 13 Things I learned from binge watching Orange is the New Black Season 2
Try to keep your mind open to possibilities and your mouth closed on matters that you don’t know about. Limit your ‘always’ and your ‘nevers’ // Life advice from famous, painfully awesome women
We were in Switzerland a couple of years ago but we didn’t capture it as perfectly as this girl has // Postcards from Switzerland
Solid advice and a really cool video // How to travel the world and get companies to pay for it
Some things I’m loving offline:
- the sunny weather
- exciting new projects
- my new dress that I got from a friend for doing her hair
- fresh coconuts
- our first batch of home-grown rocket. Best rocket I’ve ever tasted, naturally.
Amsterdam is a city most people visit for just a few days. For some people visiting Amsterdam is a spur of the moment decision, for others a trip they’ve been planning for a long time. Whatever kind of traveler you are, it can be hard to find your way around Amsterdam. There is so much going on: bikes everywhere, all those canals and don’t get me started on the language.
One thing we missed when we were traveling, was really knowing where to find the best brunch, bites or beers in the cities we visited. If you ever felt this way and you’re visiting Amsterdam any time soon, this one is for you. We made you an Amsterdam eatinerary. This eatinerary takes you out of the city center and into parts of Amsterdam that are not to be missed.
Bakers & Roasters
Eerste Jacob van Campenstraat 54
This place is very cool. It has an amazing breakfast/brunch menu, the service is outstanding and the food is beautiful. There is a queue outside and they don’t take reservations. We only had to wait ten minutes before we were seated but if you have to wait longer, do it. It’s totally worth the wait.
The Fat Dog
A Michelin-star chef who now does hot dogs. With a veggie option. They have a great terrace looking out over the canal and they serve champagne and gin & tonics.
Biertuin means beer garden. Which is exactly what this is: a garden filled with tables where they serve beer and good food. This is a spot where you’ll want to stay all evening so don’t make any other plans.
If you’re ever coming to Amsterdam and have any questions on where to stay, what to do and where/what to eat, don’t hestitate to send me a message!
[disclaimer: This piece is part of the momondo experiences series. Momondo asked us to find a unique local experience and to write about it. All opinions are our own. Thank you for supporting the sponsors that make Sparrow in Space possible]
Us, about a year ago at Nusa Lembongan, Indonesia.
We didn’t buy many souvenirs when we were traveling. As you can imagine, the little things we did buy have a lot of meaning and value to us. So when I dropped our Chinese tea cups yesterday and they broke into a million pieces, I was devastated. With the cups I saw our memories shatter across the floor. “How are we going to remember China without our teacups” I asked Nick in between tears. “I was going to drink tea from them forever”. Nick, who is glueing them together right now, said to me “Babe, we’ll always remember China, no matter what.” This story has nothing to do with this picture.
These links are for the weekend and the weekend is long over. But here they are anyway. Enjoy!
A really good blog post about how travel changes you, but not always like you expect it to happen // The End of the Road
I want to send this to someone or maybe I shouldn’t // How To Write to Someone You Admire
This has to be the funniest child in the world // Why Ava is the Queen of Vine
The first step to getting what you want is admitting what you fucking want // Stop Playing Small
This is exactly how I feel. I’m ready to build empires with him // What I Know About Love
We made this the other day and it was really good! I LOVE salmon. // Chile Lime Salmon Fajita Salad with Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette
Are you an Easter fan? I never really was. I didn’t like chocolate, eggs or bunnies when I was younger, so there wasn’t a whole lot for me to like about it.
Nick and I normally don’t ‘do’ Easter. But this year we figured we might as well enjoy it. And we did. We had such an incredible day. I wish for many many more days like this Easter. We spent the day strolling around a design/art and a food market in Amsterdam, where we had delicious homemade hotdogs and drank locally brewed beers. I even got a sunburn. Can you believe it? It’s only freakin’ April and I got a sunburn!
Looking back, I can’t tell you exactly why we had such an amazing time. Was it all the beer we drank? Was it the sun? Or was it all the delicious food? (look at me eating those nacho’s). All I know is I wish it was Easter every month!
How was your Easter?
- Cumin-spiked carrot and chickpea salad – This is a personal favorite. Nick kind of likes it but not as much as I do. Instead of just cooking the chickpeas I roast them in the oven with some salt, cumin powder and olive oil.
- Hoisin caramelized salmon and sesame soba noodle bowl – This salmon is so good! I was never a broccoli or brussels sprouts fan but ever since this recipe I am converted. I also add some raw shredded carrot, because I love carrot. Side note: I discovered our dog Zena is very passionate about raw broccoli and will do anything to get some. It’s like doggy crack.
- Roasted garlic + caramelized veggie tostadas – THIS IS AMAZING. I shared this recipe before and I’m sharing it again.
- Mini polenta pizza’s – Polenta, I’m not sure if I like you but made into a tiny pizza you are quite delicious. Instead of rainbow chard I used spinach.
We try to make a new recipe every day. With the help of Pinterest and a lot of awesome food bloggers, we collect recipes and try them. Most recipes get used only once, but these are some of the recipes that we have made again (and again). Try them and let me know what you think. I hope you love them as much as I did!
These two. They melt my heart. Ever since we got back from our trip, Nick and our dog have been inseparable. They take long walks in the forest together and for the first time in six years, we have a dog that actually listens.
I hope you have an amazing weekend, filled with forest walks, sunshine and tranquility.
I love finding Ted Talks like this that really teach me something new and make me think things through. (I know that is the whole point of Ted Talks but today I watched one about sex in the animal world and all I learned was that ducks have a corkscrew penis) // We Need to Change the Way We Think About Changing the World
I lived in a shipping container turned student home for a few months. But that looked nothing like this // Shipping Containers
Yes yes yes. I tend to do the opposite. // Underpromise Overdeliver
I’m a very picky croissant eater. I haven’t tried these yet but I’m hope they are yummy, making them soon. // How to Make Croissants
I had already picked out all the links for this For The Weekend, but then I saw this and I knew I had to add this. Incredibly inspiring. If there is only one link you should click, this is it. // The Story of Maggie Doyne
Things I’m loving offline right now:
- our first plant
- celebrating our 6,5 year anniversary
- sunny dog walks
- avocado and eggs for breakfast
Bonus link: we just had this for dinner. I can’t believe how good this recipe is. Try it. Seriously. You will thank me. // Roasted Garlic + Caramelized Veggie Tostada
Usually, Nick does all of the baking. He’s really good at it and enjoys doing it. But there are days where I crave something sweet and Nick isn’t around to bake me something magical. On those days I get out my rolling-pin and try my hand on a recipe. This time I tried making Sticky Cinnamon Scones. The recipe I used didn’t have any measures for the filling, so this is roughly what I used. If it doesn’t work out the first time, experiment a little. Once you get it right, it’s really good.
Sticky Cinnamon Scones
350 grams of self-raising flour
100 grams of cold butter
150 ml of buttermilk
a bit of salt
1 egg, beaten
80 grams of melted butter
4 table spoons of brown sugar
½ teaspoon of cinnamon
a hand of raisins
a hand of any kind of nuts you have lying around. chopped roughly. I used walnuts and almonds.
Heat your oven to 180°C.
Melt the butter for the filling, and mix it with the sugar and cinnamon. Set aside
In a big bowl, mix the flour with the butter and salt until it looks like coarse sand. Now add the buttermilk bit by bit until you get a supple dough.
Roll the dough into a ball and flour your surface. Roll out the dough until it’s about half a centimeter thick, while trying to keep it square. The thinner your dough is, the better.
Brush the melted butter/sugar on the dough. Cover the dough with the nuts and raisins.
Now roll up your dough so that it resembles some sort of sausage.
Grease up a baking dish. Cut the dough sausage in six equal parts and snuggle them together on their sides in the baking tin. Brush with some beaten egg and bake your scones for about 25 minutes or until they are golden brown.
Serve the scones with cold butter, whipped cream or unsweetened crème fraîche. They are also very yummy when you eat them piping hot straight out of the oven (totally burned my mouth on one).
- This oversized wintercoat has been keeping me warm
- We took some pictures for our friend who owns a vintage furniture shop
- This store is great. Good food, awesome branding.
- Somehow this bread took four hours in the oven before it was done.
- Nick taught our dog to walk without a leash. Best thing ever. Hands free dog walking!
- The ceiling of the National Maritime Museum in Amsterdam.
- Amsterdam and the National Maritime Museum.
Last year when we skipped winter because we were traveling in Asia, we missed it. The cold weather, the snow, staying indoors, short days. When winter came around we were incredibly excited, we bought winter coats, hats and gloves and we were ready to take this winter and love the hell out of it.
We waited and waited but no winter came. And now spring is already upon us. I can’t believe this was it! I didn’t even get to wear my gloves and the temperature went below zero on no more than two days. Not a single flake of snow!
And yet, spring feels like an awakening. The days are getting longer and when I ride my bike I hear birds singing their songs all around me. Nick said to me the other day “Babe, you’re like an excited puppy whenever there’s a sunny day” and I guess I am. I can’t wait for spring and summer and I’m already looking forward to next winter. Because who knows, we might get some snow next year.
How was your winter?
One of the things we wanted to do differently when we got back from our trip was to spend more time growing and making our own food. We haven’t been able to grow anything yet because it’s winter but we’ve been busy making most of our food from scratch. Our favorite home-made recipes so far are tortillas and this yoghurt.
The recipe for this yoghurt comes from Home Made Winter, where we also got the recipe for the Ontbijtkoek. For our first batch we followed the recipe, for our second batch we experimented a bit. For our next batch, we’re going to try adding some flavors. We’ll keep you posted.
- 1 liter fresh organic milk (you can use goat milk to make goat yoghurt, or raw milk from a friendly farmer for extra thick yoghurt)
- 200 ml of fresh organic yoghurt. You will need store-bought yoghurt for your first batch. Make sure it has live bacteria cultures.
Disinfect your containers by boiling them or putting them in the oven at a 120°C for over 10 minutes. Do not do this with plastic containers. We used Weck jars because they’re the standard for this kind of stuff in the Netherlands and readily available.
Heat up 1 liter of milk in a pan until it reaches exactly 40°C. Use a cooking thermometer to make sure you get the temperature right. Turn off the heat.
Add a little of the warm milk to the yoghurt and mix until it’s fluid, making sure there aren’t any lumps.
Mix in the yoghurt mixture with the warm milk.
Fill the jars with the yoghurt mixture.
Heat the oven to 40°C and put the jars in without their lids. Let them sit in the oven for about six hours. Resist the temptation to open the oven door. The yoghurt needs some quiet time to make love to those live bacteria cultures you put in there, so leave it alone.
After six hours you can take the jars out. Cover them with a lid or plastic wrap and put them in the fridge over night so the yoghurt can cool down and stiffen.
Our first batch was pretty nice, but it gets better every time you make new yoghurt with your previous batch.
Now this recipe makes about 1,2 liters of yoghurt, but when you try to make Greek yoghurt you will end up with less. To do this, strain your batch through cheesecloth for an hour or three while it’s cooling down. Mix well when you think it’s thick enough.