Gouda was one of the field trips that excited me the most! On a sunny day in October we took our backpack and we went to the city of cheese. After an hour of bus ride from Den Haag we arrived in Gouda (which I loved) that is now officially positioned in my Top 3 Dutch Cities. We arrived in the morning, we met with our guide which explained us, in an English-Dutch that it was hard to interpret, a bit about cheese, Stroopwafel, traditions and more …
First we visited the highest church in the Netherlands: the church of St. John, always in Gothic style, famous for its huge colored glass windows. Then, right in the middle of the square, isolated from the rest of the monuments, there is the old Town Hall, born in 1450. The curious thing about this building is the music box that is ‘stuck’ in the facade that every half hour, comes alive and all the mechanical characters begin a little folk show! After a quick lunch in a vegetarian restaurant, we head towards the oldest Wafels Bakery in Gouda (forgive me, but I cannot remember the name) for a workshop about the famous Stroopwafel!
Stroopwafels are the typical Dutch round biscuit, made of two thin wafers and in between there is a delicious caramel syrup rubbed into them. I loved it, and even more after learning that one of these cookie has 180kcal. The pastry chef started told us a brief introduction about how these wonders are made and they are made with the scraps from the bakery! Crazy! The baker then pulled out a bowl with the dough and in groups of five we got inside the lab where we had the opportunity to try to make a Stroopwafel on our own! I took a little ‘of dough and I placed it on a hot-plate, and when it was well cooked, I had to divide it in two with a very sharp knife, in order ro spread the caramel syrup. I failed miserably, but probably the bake felt so sorry that he made me try again. I could finally cut the biscuit into two and spread the thick syrup and while doing all the complicate procedure I started drooling. The biscuit is finally ready to be eaten and I almost fainted with the first bite because it was too good.
Although the best way to eat Stroopwafels is, in my opinion, to have a nice organic tea and to put the biscuit on top of the cup, so that the warmth of the tea gently soften the biscuit … this advanced technique was taught by my good friend Panos, a real expert in this kind of stuff.
We spent the rest of the day in cheese shops, was tasting, smelling all types of cheese! It was a really amazing day, I had soon much fun and the whole trip was very envolving!
I really recommend to see this beautiful city, fun guaranteed!