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Kibbeling, lekkerbek

Fried kibbeling from Volendammer Vishandel P. Bond & Zonen in Amsterdam.

What: Both kibbeling and lekkerbek refer to battered, fried white fish, traditionally cod or whiting from the North Sea—the difference is that kibbeling is cut into chunks before serving, while lekkerbek is not. (The batter, it should be noted, tends to be a bit more delicate than that used in the British manner of fish and chips.) Kibbeling is also served with dipping sauces, usually a mayonnaise-based remoulade (like tartar sauce) or a garlic sauce. We prefer the bite-size kibbeling for that reason, and for its convenient portability, reflecting the dish’s slip into “fast food” territory. Still, when it’s hot and fresh, it’s absolutely delicious, and it’s a wonderful alternative at the city’s many haringhuis (herring stands) and vishandels (fish shops) for those who insist they don’t like herring.

Where: Our kibbeling is from a fishmonger called Volendammer Vishandel P. Bond & Zonen that sets up shop in the Noordermarkt (Noorderkerkplein), a flea market in the Jordaan that turns into an organic farmers market (Boerenmarkt) on Saturdays.  

When: Sat, approx. 9am-5pm

Order: One order of kibbeling (€4 for small/250 g), which was served hot and crispy here, and not too greasy. Even the side of tartar tasted fresh, and we happily brought this fish around with us as we browsed the market’s other offerings. This stand also sells lekkerbek, as well as fried fillets of schol (plaice), makreel (mackerel), bokking (herring), and more.

Alternatively: You will find these—and all other types of fried seafood, including mussels, shrimp, and squid—at most fish stands and shops around town, so you’ll be well covered. Two more we can recommend are V.O.F. Vishandel Centrum (Haarlemmerdijk 4, map), near Centraal Station, and Vishandel Molenaar (Albert Cuypstraat 93, map) in De Pijp.


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