Love bitterballen? Wait ‘til you try these babies!
Have you ever tried bitterballen? My wife and I just returned from a short holiday break to Amsterdam and they were being served in almost every bar. Bitterballen aren’t very good for you but perhaps that’s why we liked them so much. Go ahead and splurge it’s worth it.
The crispy outer and almost gooey centre are to die for.
After trying them in several different bars, I knew I had to learn to make them and got a friend give me his recipe.
About now you might be asking yourself what these Dutch snacks are doing on a curry blog. Well just wait ‘til you try these babies! I added Indian spices to the traditional veal stuffing and the combination worked perfectly.
Here I will give you not only the Dutch version but my slightly spicier experiment too.
I think you’re going to love them. In Amsterdam, Bitterballen are also served in longer sausage shapes called croquettes. Bitterballen are perfect served as a starter or as a light snack with drinks.
Bitterballen are served with Dijon mustard and pickles in The Netherlands. I served mine with a big scoop of mango pickle mixed with Mr Naga pickle. What a great combination.
International & UK Orders
- 500ml toasted fine bread crumbs
- 1 egg – nicely beaten
- 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 500g (about a pound) rose veal rump meat diced
- 1 onion – roughly chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 clove
- nutmeg to taste (I used about ½ teaspoon)
- 75g butter
- 75g plain flour
- 250ml milk
- 250ml veal stock (The cooking juice from the meat will do just fine.)
- 1 tablespoon (one sachet) gelatin powder
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Start by slow cooking your rose veal.
- Brown the meat in the oil. You may need to do this in batches.
- Once browned, add the chopped onion, bay leaf and clove and move the ingredients around in the oil.
- Pour in just enough water to cover the meat and simmer until the rose veal is nice and tender.
- While the meat is cooking, prepare your gelatin.
- Pour the powdered gelatin into a small bowl with about three tablespoons of water.
- This should desolve most of the gelatin. The gelatin needs to be clear to work correctly so you may which to set the bowl carefully over the simmering stock until the powder has all dissolved. Set aside.
- When the meat is good and tender, place in a food processor and process until smooth. About a minutes. Retain the stock.
- Now melt the butter in a frying pan.
- When melted, add the flour and fry together for about a minute. Don’t colour the flour.
- Slowly introduce the milk while stirring continuously followed by the stock. The mixture will become think and creamy.
- Pour it over the meat and add the nutmeg, chopped parsley and salt and pepper to taste.
- Blend again and then pour the meat mixture onto a plate, cover with cling film and place in the fridge to cool for about an hour.
- When cool, form the meat mixture into golf ball sized balls.
- Dip the balls into the beaten egg and then coat with the bread crumbs.
- Heat enough oil for deep frying in a small saucepan.
- When the oil is hot enough to sizzle a piece of breadcrumb in about 20 seconds begin adding the bitterballen, frying three at a time.
- When nicely browned and crispy, remove the bitterballen from the oil with a slotted spoon to rest on kitchen towel.
- Repeat until all of the bitterballen are cooked and keep warm until serving.