Hey All,

As the weather is getting colder and rainfalls soak me every day, I wanted nothing on a Sunday but to stay inside… luckily I didn’t. I crossed the city of Amsterdam, saw a rainbow on my way, and ended up with a whole afternoon baking session with my lovely Canadian friend Carly! Yes, Canadian! And yes, this means a whole new recipe and Food and Flags covering a new piece of land on the map – yay!

This afternoon we (or rather her) prepared a fantastic blueberry pie which you must try too! Won’t be too complicated, promise.

All you need – blueberries, flour, coconut oil, egg replacement, vinegar, sugar, brown sugar, margarine, salt, baking powder

This one isn’t just a simple “national dish” though, no no. While pies are of course quite typical in North America, this one is much more special than that! Our pie baking followed Grandma Rita’s famous blueberry pie recipe! Carly’s Grandmother made this delicious dessert not only for special occasions but sometimes also decided to whip it up on simpler afternoons. After figuring out today how not complicated the making is, I think we will bake it more often as well! The miracle pie dough needs to be done first, which after the filling will basically make itself.

We mixed around 5 cups of flour with margarine and coconut oil and some salt. You work the mix with your hands until crumbly. After you add a bit of ice cold water. Instead of using an egg, you also add egg replacement (portion of one egg), two tablespoons of vinegar, and a pinch of salt. Then also bring on the sugar, 2-3 tablespoons! Work it into one big ball.

Following, you spread some flour either on a cutting board or just on your kitchen counter and roll out half of the dough ball – this will be the bottom of your pie. It should be around half a centimetre thin. Tip: if you don’t have a rolling pin, an empty wine bottle will do too (worked for us)!

Making the pie with blueberries is not only very tasty, but also reminds Carly of home. She is from the city of Sudbury, where the tiny fruit grows wild on bushes. Just imagine walking on the street and picking some berries on your way home… isn’t it just dreamy??

Continue with laying the rolled out dough in your pie tin. Then you simply mix your blueberries with some flour and sugar and pour it into the shape as well. If you live someplace like us where blueberries do not unfortunately present themselves on bushes right now, then the shop ones or the frozen ones will do too – we used a bag of the frozen ones. After, you get another ball of pastry, roll it out the same way, and gently lay it on top of your pie. Seal the edge with a fork – it also gives a pretty pattern -, then cut leaf-shaped holes on top. Looks beautiful already, doesn’t it?


You can give it a milk wash before it goes in the oven at 230 degrees, at the beginning the top covered so it doesn’t burn. After around 40 minutes you can take the cover off and let it further bake for another 10-15 minutes. Take it out when golden brown and let it cool for around half an hour.

Blueberry Pie

While baking, Carly was wearing the apron her Grandmother made for her, making it a truly nostalgic experience for her and a happy, warm experience for me. I met Carly five years ago in Groningen and while I moved across countries we somehow both managed to end up in Amsterdam. I could not be happier it turned out this way, because now I do not only have a wonderful friend in town but from today on also a my new favourite baking partner too!

The Canadian

Thank you so much for baking, Carly, and thank you for reading, reader!


Hey All,

Recently I joined a Facebook group called ‘Amsterdam Cooks’. I was not really sure if it will be nice or just a ton of spam as usual, but it turned out to be a nice place where people really just share cooking ideas. So, naturally, I figured: THIS IS IT! I can gather infinite cooks from here for the blog! I posted, I asked, tried to recruit all the internationals… and… received 1 mail. I won’t lie, I was surprised I got no more – but then there was an even greater surprise: that the one and only person reaching out is actually the coolest!

So, this is the story of one Facebook message and a delicious Indian spinach shorba.

All you need – spinach, chickpeas, garlic, ginger, salt, pepper, oil, rice, mint, bay leaves, chicken (optional), onion, lemon, cumin seeds, cinnamon, chilli flakes, coriander, Kitchen King spice blend (+ many more spices I forgot the name of)

Social media has really done it right this time! I met the loveliest girl, Gauri, and she prepared the tastiest dish. The list of ingredients above may not be complete, sorry – but the reason behind is a valid one: although we were complete strangers to each other standing in that kitchen, we ended up having the best talks, so I fell into complete distraction. If Gauri did not mention the steps or the recipe specifically, I probably could not tell you anything cooking related. Luckily she did remind me to take photos every now and then (not reflecting well on my blogging skills). My cook of this meal is originally from the Indian city of Pune, but she moved to Eindhoven when she was 8. This shorba recipe is her own adaptation of the more traditional version – worry not though, it won’t be complicated to make!

If you would like to make broth from scratch, then start with that. We basically just boiled chicken, a bay leaf, and some spices. I don’t go into more detail here because everyone has their own preferences – but then again, you can just as well use bouillon cubes.

While this is cooking, chop your onion, cloves of garlic, and pieces of ginger. These go frying in a pan on a sprinkle of olive oil. Also add all the dry spices. After a couple of minutes you can also slowly start adding handfuls of spinach. In the meantime, start cooking your rice too.

While this process did not take longer than around 15 minutes, by this point we have already covered topics of family, moving around, work, and most importantly: our common love for food. I knew it was going to be a great evening.

When the spinach got all mushy and your broth is ready too, you mix these two in a blender. Also add lemon juice, more spices (e.g. some of the Kitchen King blend), as well as chickpeas for the right consistency. This is an Indian dish, so I bet you expected a much more complicated, 4-hour-long process – so did I! But it really is this simple.

Gauri’s mum likes to add sugar into the mix as well in order to find the right balance of aromas, but the cook herself enjoys the pure power of spices without any counter-taste – so this may be an option for you too.

Don’t forget about the rice!

Garnishing may be the nicest part of this dish, because there are so many things you can add to this soup-like meal. I say soup-like because it is somewhat thicker than a regular soup and feels more hearty as well. Very tasty!!


Grab a bowl and half fill it with rice and shredded pieces of chicken (if you used any for the broth). A few ladles of shorba follow, the rest goes as you wish. We fried extra garlic with chilli to go on top of our meal and also added a spoonful of thick yogurt, fresh coriander, and pieces of cashew (though almond supposedly works even better).

Spinach Shorba

The only reason this post is not longer because if I started telling you all the things we discussed this evening, the post would become the longest ever. One thing is for sure: I have found the perfect partner in crime for cooking and for eating out! Also, if you like dancing, please check the upcoming Bollywood Dance Workshop that my wonderful chef is organizing – after trying her recipe you should also learn some of her dance moves! Hope to see you there, dear reader, and thanks again for cooking, Gauri!

The Indian


Hey ya’all!

Food and Flags is starting this year with a recipe from “the land of dreams” – and with the current overwhelming amount of media coverage on US politics, I think we could all take a little break and just focus on what it all always boils down to at the end of the day: a delicious dinner.

My cook in this episode is Phillip, a boy from the the coast of Florida. He prepares nothing other than a classic “Southern comfort” dish: mac’n’cheese –  and boy oh boy, is it gonna be tasty!

All you need – macaroni, (old) cheese, onion, garlic, breadcrumbs, butter, milk, broccoli, oil, salt, pepper

Start by boiling water in one pot and in the meantime chopping both your onion and garlic. If you bought a bigger block of cheese instead of a pack of pre-grated one, also take some time for grating – we used old Dutch cheese that gave the meal a fine savory taste at the end. Boil your pasta and in another pot melt some butter and crisp the onion and garlic. When golden, add more butter, slowly some milk, and lastly cheese – portions all depend on personal preferences, but let’s face it: can there ever be too much cheese? No.

Phil is coming from the US, but I personally believe he also comes from a land of imagination, being the daydreamer he is – when having a cup of coffee or a drink together, we always end up having the best endless conversations about philosophy, the afterlife, or about one of his hundred conspiracy theories. He is a Capricorn, he believes in the power of thought more than anyone I know (e.g. “Phil, are you cold?” – “No, I tell myself it’s not cold.”), and if I would ever have a question about hip-hop, he could not only tell me about artists and songs to listen to but could also teach me some dance moves. Reading this you definitely feel like wanting to get to know this person – and I don’t blame you, so far he definitely is one of the most interesting little gems of Amsterdam I have found!


Let’s keep crackin’ that cookin’ though! When pasta is ready, still pay attention to your sauce – add salt, pepper, and a pinch of paprika to it. Take a baking pan and layer the noodles with the creamy sauce, covering the top with extra breadcrumbs and grated cheese. In the oven it goes for 20-25 minutes on 175 degrees, until the top gets golden brown and crispy. You are practically done – easy peasy lemon squeezy! 


Only thing left to do while waiting for the main dish to reach its final crunchy form is to steam your broccoli – this part speaks for itself, so I’ll rather speak a bit more about Phil and ‘Merica while you do it. I asked him what was one thing he does not come across in Europe but is very typical for him at home: and he told me how no one calls him sweety or honey, for instance when just looking for something in a store and asking the old lady behind the counter to help. So let’s step up our game, Europeans, and stop waiting for a reason to be overly nice to each other! Does not take much extra effort but might make someone’s day nicer.

Mac and Cheese

By now you have read enough and your food should also be ready, so farewell, reader, enjoy the meal! And thank you for cooking, Russel-Phillip Bodine!

The American

Italy Vol.3

Hey All,

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls – drums please -, I am very glad to announce what you have been waiting for continuously for the past months, the reason why you got no sleep and why you had not a single proper dish, the unbelievable that you will witness: Food and Flags is back on, YES!

To make sure that this reawakening is to your greatest joy, I couldn’t help but bring some new Italian tastes. I mean, seriously, who does not like the Italian cuisine? It just cannot go wrong.

You know the feeling when you know someone only for a couple of days or weeks, but it seems like that you have always known them? Like how could you not have these people around you before? I recently moved to Amsterdam and found a couple of Italians who make me feel exactly that way, and whom I am also happy to present as the cooks for this episode: Davide and Eugenio. The boys are from the cute little town of Este and wandered over to the rainy Netherlands for the same reason as I have: to try our best of effort and luck and snatch a master’s degree.

But enough of all this seriousness, let’s eat!

All you need – Appetizer – bread, salame nostrano, parmigiano reggiano, pearl onions

That’s right, you are reading full on Italian ingredient names under the picture – we got our supply straight from the boys’ motherland, so big shoutout to the famiglia for sending us all the goodies, grazie! Nevertheless, as you can see, the starter is pretty straightforward: just layer these four things on top of each other and they are ready! And so tasty.

Of course once I had Eug and Davide over for a cooking session, I could not let them go so simply – so here we go, we are making Risotto ai Funghi Porcini! 

All you need – Risotto – onion, garlic, butter, risotto rice, dried porcini mushroom, parmesan, parsley, oil, salt, pepper

Start by putting all your mushrooms (we used two packs) in a bowl of water and let it soak for around half an hour. You might already be hungry, but Italians usually eat quite late anyway, so just take your time. In the meantime you can chop your onions and garlic and keep eating pieces of the delicious appetizer!

While I feel like I have known them for a long time, my cooks really have known each other for eternity! They went to the same kindergarten, same schools – and now, twenty years later, here they still are in the same city and and sharing a flat. (To get a feeling of this nicest of friendship, I suggest to skip down to the end of the post for a peak of the sweetest photo ever!!)

Though I am most probably putting you in the mood of digging up old memories of lost and found childhood friendships, let’s just keep cooking. Once your mushrooms have softened enough, you cut them into not too small pieces. The stove gets a whole bunch to heat up: start by a pot of water. You will use this to drop in there a pre-made bouillon cube. (Of course very ambitious ones shall make this part from scratch!) A second pot and pan follows, both heated up with a sprinkle of oil.


Fry your mushrooms with garlic in the pan, while doing the same with the onion in the second pot with butter. The boiling water can get the tasty bouillon cube and keep bubbling on low heat. The risotto rice follows the onion in the pan now. Once in, cover it with a few ladles of bouillon and keep repeating so every time it sort of starts drying up; stir it frequently. This process will last 20-30 minutes easily, so good that you still have some of those starters and hopefully also a whole bottle of wine! At the end mix the mushrooms with the risotto, keep grating parmesan in it until it becomes smooth and creamy, and of course add salt, pepper and parsley according to taste. Done! 

Risotto ai Funghi Porcini

I still have at least another 8 months ahead of me with these two Italians and I could not be happier – whenever I won’t know what music to listen to (crazy how much they know), what to eat, or simply just need someone around to cheer me up, I’m completely sure they will be the best to turn to. I hope you enjoy these easy-to-make and delicious dishes, reader! Buon appetito and of course as always, thank you for cooking, guys!

The Italians


Hey All,

Malm. Ektorp. Pokal. Basically the only Swedish words I know – all of them IKEA products. I guess once you think of Sweden, also the meatballs come to mind, or an IKEA, or ABBA. After this post Einar’s name will come to mind as well!

My chef for the day is studying with me in Vienna, is 21 years old, and he’s from the city of Linköping. He always has a smile, and already just his presence cheers you up right away. Seriously, no kidding, I have hardly ever met such a positive person before! He is very enthusiastic about travelling, meeting new people, and sports. And he misses his doggie so much! Special about this post is that we didn’t cook something very typical Swedish – but still very Swedish in heart. Let me explain. We made chicken lasagne with some nice salad. But this recipe doesn’t just come from a cooking book – Einar and his friends came up with it themselves two years ago. Sooo, as the Swedish came up with the whole idea, I think it represents the local cuisine just enough.

All you need - Salad - balsamic vinegar, olive oil, rocket, radish, tomato
All you need – Salad – balsamic vinegar, olive oil, rocket, radish, tomato
All you need - Chicken lasagne - chicken, onion, garlic, mushroom, pepper, spinach, grated cheese, lasagne 'plates', bacon, creme fraiche, salt, pepper, oil
All you need – Chicken lasagne – chicken, onion, garlic, mushroom, pepper, spinach, grated cheese, lasagne ‘plates’, bacon, creme fraiche, salt, pepper, oil

We start with the lasagne, will do the salad later. (My greatest excuses if the label ‘lasagne’ hurts the Italian, it’s nothing against you guys!) If you’re a regular visitor here, you probably already know the drill – always start by chopping up every ingredient. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. You fry the onion, garlic, paprika, and mushroom pieces in a pan. Later you do the same with your tiny pieces of chicken and the bacon. You put both in a bowl and mix it with creme fraiche, salt, pepper.

Once done, get a frying pan and cover it in some oil. Put a layer of your mix on the bottom, cover it with lasagne, and keep repeating – we had 3 layers at the end, but the more the merrier. Top the whole thing with more creme fraiche, spinach, and a lot of cheese – and goes in the oven.

I can really recommend a glass of wine for the process, as well as a lot of Swedish music. We listened to Avicii, First Aid Kit, The Cardigans – and, naturally, ABBA! No wonder why Einar is so energetic, the combination of cooking, wine, and this music also made my day!

While the lasagne is in the oven, make your salad quickly so you have some time to dance around for the great background songs. Basically you just got to grab a bowl, put the rocket salad in there, the leftover spinach, pieces of tomato and radish. You mix it with some honey, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Done!

Chicken lasagne and Swedish candy
Chicken lasagne and Swedish candy

While we ate this amazingly tasty dish, we had a great talk about our countries, food, student life in Vienna. I also got a suprise dessert – real Swedish candy! Yum yum. It was butterscotch, one of my favorites. We ended our night by playing some pool with friends, so we kiinda worked off the dinner.

The Swedish
The Swedish

Enjoy the dish, and please, try to look for your own Einar! As a matter of fact he has a twin brother, so you may try to meet him as well. Thank you for cooking, Swedish friend!

Italy Vol.2

Hey All,

As it is getting warmer outside, even here up North, I’m really getting in the mood of just going to a beach, having a cocktail, falling asleep on the side of the sea… and trying not to get completely sunburnt. This still needs to wait at least a few weeks, so for the meantime at least my kitchen got a mediterranean atmosphere – welcome to the second Italian post!

All you need - eggplant, onion, garlic, tomato sauce, mozzarella, basil, thyme, salt, pepper, oil
All you need – eggplant, onion, garlic, tomato sauce, flour, mozzarella, basil, thyme, salt, pepper, oil

Parmigiana di melanzane. Doesn’t it just sound delicious already? My Italian cook was Marco this time. He’s from the lovely city of Pisa, currently doing his PhD here in Groningen. Greatly talented in acting, in improv, in playing with words in any way – and apparently also quite a good cook! This is one of his favorite dishes, and I think from now on also one if mine – and at the end of trying this meal yours as well. Let’s get is started!

Grab an eggplant, and slice it up, not too thin. If you have the time then squeeze the juice out of the slices as well – we were way too hungry and skipped this step, so it works without as well. Also chop your onion. Then heat up two pans, one with a lot of oil, the other only with a few drops. Two slices of smashed garlic and your onion go in your lighter pan, and another piece of garlic should dive into the massive amount of oil in the other one. Now put some flour on a plate, and floppp your eggplant slices in it – coat both sides nicely. These white pieces can follow the piece of garlic in the oil swim. Each needs a few minutes to fry, so just keep repeating the same process – and when done, salt them well.  Don’t forget about the other pan! You can pour the tomato sauce on the fried onion. Add salt, pepper, thyme, basil and a tiny bit of oil to it as well. Also, preheat your oven to 180 degrees on convection mode. While your eggplant is frying and sauce is boiling, take care of your mozzarellas. First, squeeze the milk out of each, then slice it up. You have all ingredients ready now!

Only the layering is left! Grab a frying pan, and pour a bit of oil on the bottom. A layer of eggplant, a layer of sauce, a layer of cheese. A layer of eggplant, a layer of sauce, a layer of cheese. A layer of… nahh, you get it. Put it in the oven for 30 minutes. Afterwards turn the oven off, but leave it inside for another 20 minutes, so the sauce has time to cool down and to gain a more thick texture. This baking part takes quite some time, I know, but it is totally worth it!

Parmigiana di melanzane
Parmigiana di melanzane

We ate this all. All of it. ALL! THE TWO OF US! So if you are making this with friends, get multiple eggplants! And we also watched Game of Thrones while eating, but I do not recommend this part – either before of after. If the show gets you into a bad mood, think of Marco who is kind, funny and always talks to you with a smile on his face! Or look for him on the streets of Groningen, that might be an even better idea!

The Italian
The Italian

Thank you for cooking, Marco, and buon appetito to all of you!

Hungary Vol.2 @Gourmet Festival

Hey All,

This week my sister opened her dress&bar place, so I flew home for a few days. The concept and the place are amazing, so whenever you’re in Budapest look SCHATZI up! It’s the real treasure in the city.

As I was around though, I realized that we had the yearly Gourmet Festival, where the best restaurants, cafés, confectioners, and wineries of the country are present. I wanted to show you guys a few tastes I have tried, so you also have a reference which places to visit if you’re in my homecountry. (Sorry for the bad quality pictures, I only had my phone with me.)


ZONA has a contemporary bistro cuisine, and has been aiming to get a Michelin star for the past few years. Their name refers to the small portions you get there, but at the same time they aim to keep non-luxury prices – great combination, and amazing flavors each time. Although I love the atmosphere of their well-designed restaurant, finding them at an open air festival was just as great.

This little plate had just as many tastes as colors – cevapcici, roasted pepper, kaymak, and some pita bread. You may not know what half of these words mean, so just to be clear: cevapcici is basically grilled minced meat, typical in Southeastern Europe; and kaymak is a heavy, creamy dairy product, usually found in the Balkans and Central Asia. It was simply a great little dish! So, if you’re ever in Budapest, go and find a similar mix of the Hungarian, Asian, and Basque cuisines in ZONA!


If I want to translate the name of this place literally, it means ‘pigpotato’ – sounds just as good as originally. They have a place in Budapest and one at Lake Balaton, and are well known for only using bio products. You always find something different on their menu, depending on what fresh ingredients they could get in the morning.

The type of bread was a little disappointing here, but  the filling so much better! Typical Hungarian ‘mangalica’ sausage, with lettuce, and horseradish-apple sauce. Ouh,even writing about this makes me hungry again.


To be honest, I have never heard about this place before the festival, but they they were pretty impressive here, so I will visit them the next time I’m home for sure. They say they provide an “international culinary experience” – well, I don’t know about that yet, but their rather simple but tasty dish proved for sure that they are good.

The piece of focaccia bread had roasted asparagus, truffle oil, parmesan and tartine on it. This is something that we can all also just put together at home in a few minutes, so this one was also a rather practical experience!


This last place got its Michelin star last year and ever since has been of course getting a lot of attention. I definitely wanted to look their booth up. Fortunately the crowd was already gone, I got the chance to talk a little to the chef about their meals for a few seconds – and realized how much more I need to learn about food, because him telling me about all the ingredients was like listening to a new language.

Their pretty linzer was filled with goose liver paté, spiced up with some sauces (?), and eatable flowers. This one is rather a dessert, but there was no order of meals here for me. However, this second tiny one was my favorite – a ball of cottage cheese rolled in seeds, with horseradish juice. The serving is completely inexplicable with the mouse trap and the test tube, but the combination of tastes was marvellous! MARVELLOUS!

Last but not least we had a piece of chicken paprikash with eel on the top. Sounds weird? It really isn’t. I need to find them, steal the recipe, and eat this a lot. And also the cottage cheese ball… especially that. Well deserved Michelin star for the guys for sure!

All together I had a great time, so I really recommend all of you to find any sort of foodie festival around yourselves, and go there with a full wallet and an empty belly! And, of course, visit all these great places once you’re in Hungary!

Germany Vol.2

Hey All,

I haven’t posted a recipe for a long time, so to catch up on that I might start repeating some countries – this should only be good for you though, getting some expertise in some of the national cuisines. This is gonna be a mini one, but the amount of tastiness is very big!

Philippe was my cook this time. We are doing an improv comedy course together – great place to gather some fun, friends, and potentially flags! This German is from Berlin, and he prepared me his all time favorite dish, which also happens to be the first recipe he has ever learnt! Bratkartoffeln,here we go!

All you need - potato, mushroom, ham, green beans, onion, oil, salt, pepper
All you need – potato, mushroom, ham, green beans, onion, oil, salt, pepper

It’s gonna be so easy to prepare and so great to eat, you’ll love it! First just chop everything into cubes, slices, bites. Then you start frying the potato cubes in a little oil. Try to use a rather deep pan so everything will fit at the end. Next you add the onion and the beans. Wait a couple of minutes, then throw on your pieces of mushroom and ham. Spice it up with salt and pepper, mix it all up, and wait until all ingredients are well fried, crispy.

Well, I can’t believe it myself but… this is it. Eat up! And get a nice German beer too – a great companion here, or actually any other evening.


Philippe is very open, fun, and loves to travel. He’s planning a very cool hitchhiking tour across Western/Northern Europe for this summer (, I encourage all of you to either join him or look out for him during those weeks so he can make this tasty dish for you as well! In the meantime you can check us out doing some improv this Saturday if you’re in the city of Groningen! As I told you before, having a nice German around is always a fun experience to have!

The German
The German

Thank you for cooking, Philippe! Enjoy the potato, ya’ll!


Hey All,

“It’s all about time management”, says Arkadius all the time. My cook for this post is someone who is interested in so so many things and does so many things, I always figure he probably just doesn’t sleep. At all. Doing two studies at once, travelling, working, and still finding the time for having fun with friends – and cooking for FoodAndFlags! One of the cleverest and most skilful person there is! Arkadius is from Poland but grew up in Germany, so this is once again a rather multicultural flag with a multi-tasty dish, you’ll love it!

All you need - onion, egg, sauerkraut, mushroom, flour, bacon, salt, pepper, oil
All you need – onion, egg, sauerkraut, mushroom, flour, bacon, salt, pepper, oil (missing from photo: lemon, horseradish, pre-cooked beetroot, oops:) )

Dumplings!!! You’re gonna make dumplings now!

So, let’s start with the dough. You mix 2-2.5 and a half cups of flour, an egg, half cup of water, a tablespoon of oil, and some salt in a bowl, and just knead it until it’s one big ball of pastry. Also, keep adding some extra flour until it’s not sticky and weird anymore – you would think this is the nastiest part, but wait for it… So, once you have your ball of dough, roll it out to be around 0.3cm thin. Put some flour under and top of it and also on your rolling pin. Or whatever you use for this purpose, we only had a bottle of olive oil, works perfectly fine! Then with a round glass cut out pieces of the dough, and repeat this process as long as you have pastry.

Before going any further you’ll make the side-dish so it has time to cool down. Here comes the actual nasty part.

Grate the pre-cooked beetroots. And, watch out for the juice!! I completely ruined my jeans with it, looked like a murder scene all over the place. So, after having that grated, just mix it in a bowl with horseradish and lemon juice. The spicier you like it, the more horseradish you use! Put it in the fridge or freezer until serving.

Ready? So now the dumpling filling. Chop all mushrooms, onion, bacon and sauerkraut and heat up two pans with a sprinkle of oil. In one you put the bacon and onion, in the other the mushroom and sauerkraut. Salt and pepper goes on both! Oo also, put on a pot of water to boil!! This multi-tasty food requires quite some multitasking.

Now comes the time when you realize how easy it actually is to make dumplings! Get one of the round pastry fellows, put a spoon of the sauerkraut-mushroom filling in the middle, and fold it up. It should have a half-Moon shape; stick the curved side together very well so the filling has no chance to escape. Make a few, put them in the boiling water – it needs 5-6 minutes. Then you put them over to the bacon-onion-pan to fry for a few minutes.


Look at you, ready with all the dumplings! Serve it together with the beetroot puree, some pickles, and preferably a shot of vodka. While we were having this dish, it really reminded Arkadius of Christmas – very holiday-like meal these dumplings. Even though he grew up in Germany, when it comes to holidays he feels more Polish. I think many of us can relate to this – you keep cooking dishes from all over the world, but once the warmth of home hits you, you go back to the traditional things.

Dumplings and all
Dumplings and all

I can recommend not only making this dish, but rather to find an Arkadius-like person around yourself. Someone who is such a hard-working and multi-sided, colorful person can always motivate you to start new things – and try cooking such a nice and extremely filling dish. Uh, and he is also a fellow-blogger, check this out: !

The Polish
The Polish

Thank you for cooking, Arkadius! Peeps, go and make those yummmm dumplings!

The Philippines

Hey All,

Today finally came the day when I could gather a flag from a completely new continent – so far FoodAndFlags has met some European and South American countries, but now it also has Asia in the repertoire! Currently I’m in Kassel, Germany, with one of my best friends, Iris. She happens to be “the best of South-Eastern-West” (as her Dad says), because she is half Filipino and half Dutch and was born and raised in Germany – so summing up, comes from a very multicultural background. Exactly because of this, she has been travelling a lot and also loves to do it, probably will visit many more countries in the future. I will try to join her so I can share as many flags with you guys as possible! Iris is very ambitious, likes sports, good movies, good series – we are watching so many together, you would not believe -, and she is really just super fun to be around. If you’re lucky you might meet her once, but for the meantime you can prepare the dish we made together today.

All you need - banana sauce, carrot, potato, rice, garlic, onion, pork fillet, pineapple, salt, pepper, oil
All you need – banana sauce, rice, carrot, potato, garlic, onion, pork fillet, pineapple, salt, pepper, oil

The Philippines, also known as “the country of the hundred islands” is very famous for its hospitality and love for foreigners. The Filipino love to cook, eat and party – sounds like the place to be! As I have seen today, they also don’t overcomplicate cooking. We prepared some afritada, which mainly contains very basic ingredients, except the banana sauce. You can get it either in The Philippines or some Asian markets. It’s very tricky though, because it does not have either the colour or the smell of banana, but supposedly contains 40% of it.

So, you start by putting on some water and rice to boil, using a pot or a rice cooker. We used the rice cooker, which I personally have never done before, but is a way easier method. Then you just chop chop chop everything, carrots, potatoes and meat into blocks, onion and garlic into tiny pieces. Next, you boil the potatoes and the carrots – first only put in the potatoes and after around 5 minutes the carrots, because that needs less time. Keep an eye on your rice! After your veggies are soft, you heat up a few drops of oil in a pan. Start by frying the garlic until golden brown, then add the onion and wait for the same tone. Add the meat, and keep stirring it until done. Cover the pan and wait as long as the liquids of onion, meat and oil evaporate. How is your rice doing? Good? All right. So, now you put your banana sauce and some water in the pan – you want it to have a dark red colour, the consistency depends on your preferences. At the end, you add the veggies and some pineapple with a bit of its juice. Boil it for a little while, then you are already done!


This meal is not only delicious but also very filling, nutritious and you can make a big portion of it ahead for a few days. We made way too much ourselves, so it is coming back with us to The Netherlands tomorrow.


So far this has been the most international flag. I would actually like to name it 30 countries, as I’m writing this post abroad at Iris’ place where you can find all these cool things from all over the world, let it be a matryoshka, shells, table, food or pictures. I also always enjoy seeing where someone grew up, so getting a taste from the Filipino cuisine just made it even nicer. Thank you for cooking, Iris!

The Filipina
The Filipina

The Filipino would say kain ka ha, meaning Eat more and enjoy!