The Dutch can’t live without their bread and bread toppings for even a day. ‘Roggebrood’ rye bread, ‘beschuit’, ‘ontbijtkoek’, ‘krentenbollen’... The Dutch eat bread for breakfast and lunch. So it’s only natural that we have a broad range of bread toppings (or sandwich fillings, as you prefer). There is sausage and cheese...a lot of cheese. But we also eat many special sweet toppings. Sweet spreads like apple syrup, chocolate paste or ‘speculaas’ and many types of sprinkles, such as ‘hagelslag’ (chocolate sprinkles) and ‘muisjes’, the Dutch equivalent of ‘hundreds and thousands’. You don’t have to be Dutch to enjoy them!
‘Hagelslag’ is one of the best-loved toppings in Holland: sweet chocolate sprinkles in milk, white and dark chocolate that look more like cake decoration than food. They were first created in 1936 after a five-year-old boy had repeatedly asked the CEO of Venz to make a chocolate bread topping. Today the sweet toppings from Venz can be found on the shelves of every supermarket.
If you are in Holland, don’t forget to taste some of our bread toppings. They are available from every supermarket and are probably served with breakfast at your hotel as well. We should warn you, though. They are so addictive that the Dutch, when abroad, would do anything to have them flown in.