Wednesday, May 1st, 2019


Boterkoek (Dutch Butter Cake)

May 1: National Butter Day

Highlander flew on KLM Airlines once for a rare international business trip. After working in Germany for a week, he had a one-day stopover in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. He did not have time to find too many souvenirs in the city to bring home. But he got a free KLM miniature building as a passenger on business class as a gift. These Delft Blue collectibles contain genever (Dutch gin). Since 1952, and nearly every year since then, only business class passengers have received a miniature building on their flight. KLM commissions a new design annually. Highlander’s 2008 #74 design is worth the minimum but there are serious collectors who pay premium prices for some exclusive miniatures to complete their villages!

We can’t afford to fly business class and collect other cute mini houses. But we can easily make a mini Dutch butter cake. We halved the original recipe because it is rich (like people who can travel luxuriously on KLM), especially since we used European-style butter with a creamier and higher fat content. This type of butter makes this snack cake very flavorful. So splurge on this ingredient to make boterkoek on National Butter Day.

Recipe

(Adapted from AllRecipes.com)

Ingredients

  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened (we used European style butter)
  • ¾ cup sugar, granulated white
  • ½ tablespoon almond extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 ¼ cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds

Directions

In a large bowl, cream the butter with the sugar. Stir in the almond extract. Beat in the egg. Set asude, In another bowl, combine the flour with baking powder.

Gradually blend this into the butter mixture until smooth. The batter will be thick. Grease a 6-inch round cake pan. Press the batter into the pan. Sprinkle the sliced almonds over the top. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes, testing the cake with a toothpick for doneness. Remove from the oven and let cool. Remove from the pan. Slice and serve.

Notes

  • Dutch butter cake is similar to the Swedish Visiting Cake and Spanish Ignacio almond cake recipes.
  • Serve boterkoek with tea and coffee.
  • Learn more about European butter vs. American butter from thekitchn.com website.
  • Search our blog for other Dutch recipes.

Meat Jun

(Korean Meat Pancakes)

May: National Beef Month

Our favorite Korean restaurant back in Hawaii is Yummy Korean BBQ.  It is informal, fast and relatively cheap for huge portions—and it lives up to its name! Islander and her ohana (family) order Korean plate lunches at the food court (Navy Exchange Pearl Harbor, Don Quijote/Daiei Waipahu, Ala Moana and Pearlridge centers) where Yummy Korean BBQ is located. As creatures of habit, Islander always gets kalbi, Highander orders bulgogi, Mommy and Daddy share a combo plate with barbecue beef and chicken and Islander’s brother gets meat jun.

Meat jun in Hawaii is basically soegogi-jeon in Korean. The pancakes are thinly sliced marinated pieces of meat, usually beef, dipped in flour and eggs and fried in a pan. It is a very flavorful food and we sometimes cook this for Islander’s brother when he visits us. It reminds us of the local ethnic cuisine from home as well as our good times together as ohana.

Make yummy memories—and meat jun—for the family during National Beef Month!

Recipe

(Adapted from Foodland)

Ingredients

  • 1 pound of beef ribeye or top sirloin, sliced thinly across the grain
  • ¾ cup soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ cup water
  • 8 eggs, beaten
  • flour
  • oil for frying

Directions

Slice the beef across the grain. With a meat mallet, pound it down to 1/8-inch thin. In a bowl, pour the soy sauce.

Mix in the minced garlic. Stir in the sugar and water. Add the thin slices of meat.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs. In a flat pan, add the flour. Take a slice of meat and let the marinade drip back into its bowl. Dredge it on both sides with flour, shaking off excess. Coat in egg mixture. Fry in oil in a skillet, browning both sides. Drain on paper towel. Slice and serve hot with dipping sauce (see Notes) and steamed rice.

Notes

  • Dipping sauce is optional. To make it, combine 1/3 cup soy sauce, 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon sesame oil and a pinch of red or black pepper in a measuring cup. Mix and dish out on dipping saucers.
  • Search our blog for other beef recipes.