Sample Tapas-Style Indonesian Fare in Amsterdam at Blauw

We’re going to travel a bit further afield than Paris today to explore an awesome spot I discovered on my recent trip to Amsterdam: Blauw.

I had had Indonesian food only once before: at my former food media job, we hosted a Kiwi chef who had spent some time cooking in Indonesia. He made a dish called beef rendang that took several hours to complete. By the time it was plated, we were all exhausted and starving, which may have contributed to my first bite of the curry to being frankly one of the top five things I’ve ever put in my mouth.

When my sister and I were doing research for our trip to Amsterdam, we discovered that the city is home to a number of great Indonesian restaurants. We settled on sampling the fare at Blauw, in no small part because they offer a tapas-style service, where you can share several different curries and salads on the menu, getting a taste of everything.

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For those who have never tried Indonesian food, I think the best way I can describe it is as a cross between Thai and certain Indian cuisines. There are a lot of curries and uses of spices like turmeric, but you’ll also see soy, coconut, and lots of peanuts.

Some of our favorite things in our sampler were the goat brochettes with soy sauce as well as a satay salad with crisps on top. And while I can’t go near bananas, my sister assured me that the fried banana was exquisite. There was also a spicy sambal sauce and crispy roasted coconut to sprinkle over everything, adding texture and just the right amount of sweetness.

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Oh, and of course Indonesian beer to wash it all down.

Not only was the food at this restaurant delicious and just spicy enough to highlight the use of chile without melting your face off, it was also a great way to get acquainted with this relatively unfamiliar (to me) cuisine.

Blauw – Amstelveenseweg 158-160 1075 XN AMSTERDAM

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