Stroopwafels are an old Dutch treat from the town of Gouda in South Holland*. They’re the second-most-famous food contribution to Dutch cuisine after the eponymous Gouda cheese.
The pronunciation is just as it appears, with a roll of the “r” to sound authentically Dutch.
The traditional way to eat these cookies is with a cup of coffee, tea or cocoa. Just before it is eaten, the stroopwafel is placed on top of the hot cup in order to warm it up. The filling melts a bit, and scents of caramel perfume the air.
A glass of cold milk or iced coffee works just as well, since today’s stroopwafels don’t need any extra softening to be enjoyed (analogy: warm chocolate chip cookies before they cool).
We’ll present this week’s Top Pick, Finger Licking Dutch Stroopwafels, in a moment. But first…
Stroopwafel cookies were invented in Gouda in 1784. Different sources cite different dates, and the identity of the inventor is lost to history. It’s a reasonable guess that it was a poor housewife trying to scrimp together something to eat, and “glued” crumbs together with syrup.
This poor man’s food evolved into waffle cookie sandwiches: two waffle rounds with a caramel or syrup filling.
They are ubiquitous in Holland: from street carts to cafés, from mass-market supermarket brands to artisan-baked cookies.
Fillings have evolved beyond the original caramel, to cinnamon, chocolate, honey and vanilla. Sometimes, chopped nuts are added to the filling.
The cookie is also known in the U.K. as a caramel cookie, by its English translation, syrup waffle.
Today’s stroopwafel is about four inches in diameter. Other brands make mini-sizes, half the diameter.
Finger Lickin’ Dutch stroopwafels require no softening to taste delicious. They are pleasantly chewy, and just sweet enough without being cloying.
That being said, they’re a good year-round snack, with individually wrapped cookies to grab and go.
In the summer, the caramel won’t get drippy: just nicely creamy.
If you insist, warm it over your hot drink; or for 10 seconds in the microwave.
Stroopwafels are sold in boxes individually wrapped, in 8-packs, in Delft-style gift tins, and other configurations.
They even sell boxes of cookie crumbs from the manufacturing line, for ice cream or oatmeal topping, or to mix into pancake batter.
The line is all natural, non-GMO and suitable for vegetarians.
Get your Stoopwafels:
*The difference between Holland and The Netherlands: The Netherlands, officially the Kingdom of The Netherlands, consists of 12 provinces, of which Holland refers to two: Noord-Holland North Holland) and Zuid-Holland (South Holland). Amsterdam is in North Holland, Rotterdam is in South Holland, as is The Hague (Den Haag). Utrecht, the fourth-largest city, is not in Holland but is located in the province of Utrecht [source].