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Dutch culture - zakspanner

Dutch culture – Zakspannertjes

“Zakspannertjes”… No Yokes! Eggs on the bar in Amsterdam

Yes, in some bars, even my local ‘Brown Cafe’ (l’Affiche) you’ll find boiled eggs on the bar, Even now this is a huge surprise when I see it,also my (British) expat boyfriend. What happened to the nuts?

What came first the egg or the nut? :p

Lucky for me the bartender and some ‘real’ Amsterdammers (people born and raised in Amsterdam) could help us out. It comes from an old tradition to have these ‘snacks’ on the bar. You can keep eggs for a couple of days and are hygienic since they are in their own shell. The salt you put on the egg makes the visitors thirsty, which then obviously makes them want to drink more. Besides that the ‘zakspannertjes’ are often free, even the Dutch probably won’t eat more than 2, which keeps it cheap for the bar too.

So, urm, why are theycalled ‘zakspannertjes’? Well…..

Even I had to ask for the name of this  (can I call it) ‘Dutch habit’ as well. First, let me translate this for you. ‘Zak’ means ‘sack’ but in this case, it refers to ‘ballsack’(OOHH Lekker....) ‘Spanning‘ is ‘tension’ and ‘tje’ we use to make things small, for example  ‘huisje’ is ‘little house’. So if I freely translate this it would be a ‘sacktentioner’... I hear you thinking.. WTF…??

Again , staff at  the brown cafe were able to help when I asked ‘Amsterdammers’, if I (as a woman) wasn’t allowed to eat it then (since I don’t have a ballsack), but luckily I am.

I actually needed the help of good old Google for this. Since eggs are rich in protein they are called ‘zakspannertjes’... well, well, well…

What can I say? Everyday is a schoolday!

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