Spice Trade

I love to cook and I’m always adding herbs and spices to just about anything I cook. They may usually be dried and preground, which proper chefs would say is a no-no, but I figure this is less of a waste, not to mention easier to track down. When I moved here, I had to rebuild my spice shelf. That meant learning some new names for old favorites. Most are fairly easy to figure out, but I thought I’d share a list of some of my mainstays in case anyone else suddenly needs a translation.

Kruiden | Herbs/Spices

Kerrie | Curry
Kurkuma |  Turmeric
Kardemom Poeder  |   Cardamom Powder
Knoflook Poeder  |   Garlic Powder
Koriander  |   Coriander
Kaneel  |  Cinnamon
Komijnzaad  |   Cumin Seed
Kruidnagel   |  Clove
Uienpoeder   |  Onion Powder
Basilicum |  Basil
Peterselie  |   Parsley
Nootmuskaat  |   Nutmeg
Gember   |  Ginger
Salie  |   Sage
Tijm   |  Thyme
Rozemarijn  |   Rosemary
Paprika   |  Paprika
Laurierblad  |  Bay Leaves
Oregano   |  Oregano
Serehpoeder (Gemalen Citroengras)  | Lemongrass Powder
Zout    |   Salt
Zwarte Pepper  |  Black Peper

12 thoughts on “Spice Trade

  1. Haha nice! You seem to be collecting a lot of them. As Asian, we don’t use much herbs and spices, but i’m learning to apply them in my cooking now. 🙂

    So far I have 5 bottles and growing…It would be great to use fresh ones but I do agree these bottles are more economical. And besides, we got a basil pot, and end up having poop around the kitchen where we placed the it. It turned out we bought the basil with somepets in it…the snails just ate all the leaves haha

    • I do love using spices and herbs; they really do a good job of adding some nice flavor and depth to dishes. I’d love to be able to use fresh herbs more, but my cats tend to eat them before I can use them! I guess I’d rather have cats than snails, though!

      Nutmeg (nootmuskaat) is a popular Dutch spice. It’s great in spinach dishes and they put it in mashed potatoes quite often.

    • Oh no! So sorry to hear that! When you go back to look for it, you might need to check the Conimex section, since some of the stores don’t seem to sell ground cumin in the regular spice section (just the seeds). Conimex sells it as Djinten (gemalen komijn). I hope that helps for the next time. A fellow expat helped me out with that tidbit when AH stopped selling ground cumin.

      Still, it is a good excuse to make cookies! 😉

    • Ha! Thanks for reminding me to look up what that one was. I’m sure I have seen that in the stores, but had no idea what it was. Dragon is so much more fun than tarragon! I may pick some up today, just because.

  2. This is a wonderful list, thank you! I just moved to the Netherlands (Breukelen) two weeks ago from the United States and have had some funny mishaps trying to rebuild my spices. I thought “chili” was chili powder – surprise that it’s really cayenne pepper!

    I’ve been searching high and low for baking powder. Can’t find it in with the flours at my Albert Heijn. Any ideas?

    So excited to find your blog. The photos are beautifully and its wonderfully written. Just subscribed. Looking forward to exploring more of Utrecht, as it’s only 25 min by bus for me. So far it’s my favorite destination (enjoyed it more than Amsterdam)!

    • Welcome to the Netherlands and the best region (Utrecht) of them all! I’m glad my list may be of some help. I had the same confusion with chili vs chili powder. Fortunately, I’ve found some recipes to make my own chili powder blend, although I also had my parents bring some when they visited. Baking powder is available here, but baking soda isn’t.

      Baking powder is bakpoeder and Albert Heijn usually seems to carry the Dr. Oetker brand (well, a name something like that). You’re more likely to find it over with the vanilla extract (aroma) and the cake decorating bits and pieces, which tend to be by the cake tart and other mixes. Here, though, it’s sold in a package of little bags, rather than the canisters/tins I was used to in the US. For baking soda, you’ll need to find a toko (an Asian food market). They tend to carry good ol’ Arm & Hammer baking soda.

      Feel free to ask about anything else. I know it can be confusing in the early days — and sometimes even after a few years! I hope you’re settling in well and are very happy here! Succes!

  3. Finding spices was one of the most difficult parts of early shopping experriences here. I couldn’t be sure that many actually existed (the Albert Heijn had a much smaller selectiont han most US stores anyway), and the names were completely different. There wasn’t any way to logically compare bottles, no way to smell them, and so I inevitably had to buttonhole a clerk to try to describe something as we searchhed together. I think you’ve got the basis for a good quiz that tests how far you’ve ocme in settling in!

    • I remember when AH stopped carrying the ground cumin, only offering the seeds. Suddenly I had to learn the Indonesian (?) name for it, on top of the Dutch name, in order to find the right Conimex version. Herbs and spices are definitely one of the more challenging aspects of starting to grocery shop in the Netherlands.

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