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Port of Call: Our Adventure to Rotterdam, Netherlands

Port of Call: Our Adventure to Rotterdam, Netherlands

Jan. 12th, 2024

Every month, the participating Life Enrichment departments at affiliated communities provide their residents with a different cultural experience through the Port of Call program. Residents in participating communities will enjoy fun activities and the tasty cuisine of each chosen Port of Call city or country. This month, the Port of Call program will celebrate the culture of the city of Rotterdam, Netherlands!

About Rotterdam

Rotterdam is a city located in the Netherlands province of South Holland, inland from the North Sea. The Nieuwe Maas River and Rotte River sit in the middle of Rotterdam. Rotterdam became a city in 1340 after a dam was built in the Rotte river. Today, it is the biggest port in Europe and the second biggest city by population in Europe.1

Specifically, Rotterdam has over 650,000 citizens across its nineteen provinces.2 The majority, over 50 percent, originate from the Netherlands. Bosnians, Indonesians, Pakistanis, and Moroccans make up the rest of the population.3 The predominant language spoken in Rotterdam is Dutch, but some people speak English.4

Things to Do

There are many attractions and places to explore in Rotterdam. One of Rotterdam’s top attractions is the Markthal, which translates to “Market Hall” in English. The Markthal is a very large grey stone building with retail, restaurants, and residential spaces. Each restaurant and retail space are set up as individual stands, much like a food market in the United States.5

If you’re looking to explore Rotterdam outdoors, you can visit the Erasmus Bridge. The Erasmus Bridge was completed in 1996 after six years of construction. It is a cable-stayed bridge that is over 2,600 feet long and over 450 feet tall. While walking, biking, or driving on the bridge, you can take in the beautiful city skyline!6

Do you want to go to Rotterdam with the whole family? If so, the Rotterdam Zoo would be a fun place to visit! The zoo is located just northwest of the city center and south of the Schle-Schiekanaal River. There are eight different areas to explore, which include the African Plains, African Jungle, Asian Corridors, Sustainable North Sea, Caribbean Coast, Himalayan Peaks, and Nature Nearby. Each of these areas offers education on the variety of plants and animals that they have.7

Located in central Rotterdam is the Euromast Tower. You can step into the tower and enjoy the ride up to the top, and take in city views from over 600 feet in the air. After you take in the views, you can reserve a table and order a meal from the restaurant in the tower. If you are feeling adventurous, you can rappel off the tower and appreciate the views from a different perspective.8

Food in Rotterdam

Before Rotterdam was filled with various cuisines from around the world, Rotterdammers mostly ate potatoes, meat, and veggies.9 Today, food in Rotterdam is a mix of cuisines from around the world that immigrants brought with them from their home countries. Here are some popular dishes in Rotterdam:

  • Stroopwafel: A stroopwafel is two thin waffles with a sweet sauce in the middle. You can eat a stroopwafel for breakfast, alongside your coffee, or as a dessert.10
  • Hutspot: Hutspot is a potato-based dish with carrots and onions. You can put your favorite type of meat on top as well.11
  • Kapsalon: Kapsalon is a sought-after dish that can most commonly be ordered from a food truck. It is French fries with cheese, meat, lettuce, and a special sauce.12
  • Bitterballen: Bitterballan is fried meatballs usually eaten as an appetizer. They have a crunchy exterior and a juicy interior.13
  • Kibbeling: Kibbeling is fried fish that is fried in spices and beer. This can be eaten as an appetizer or as the main dish.14

Our Menu

The dietary department created a menu for the Port of Call. Here’s the menu for Rotterdam as well as the corresponding recipes. These recipes are tailored for the communities, but you can always adjust the size of the recipe to fit your needs! The menu of affiliated communities is subject to change and this menu is not final.

Dutch Potato Salad:

  • 25 CUPS of Potatoes boiled diced 1/2"
  • 3 CUPS of Celery diced 1/4"
  • 5 CUPS of Carrots and peas frozen
  • 3 CUPS of Pickles relish minced
  • 1 CUP of Mustard Dijon
  • 3 CUPS of Mayonnaise
  • 3 TBSP of Salt
  • 3 TBSP of Pepper black ground
  • ½ CUP Vinegar white
  • 2 CUPS of Green onion sliced thin
  • 4 CUPS of Hard-boiled eggs diced
  • 2 CUPS of Bacon crispy chopped fine
  • ½ CUP of Bacon fat liquid
  • ½ CUP of Sugar granulated


  1. In a large mixing stainless-steel bowl, combine all ingredients and gently mix well.
  2. Keep refrigerated until needed for portioning.

Dutch Oven One Pot Pork Stew with Gouda Mashed Potato:

  • 10 LBS of Pork butt diced 1.5"
  • 5 CUPS of Carrots diced 1/2"
  • 5 CUPS of Celery diced 1/2"
  • 5 CUPS of Onion diced 1/2"
  • 4 TBSP of Garlic fresh chopped
  • 4 TBSP of Salt
  • 2 TBSP of Pepper black ground
  • 4 CUPS of Red wine
  • 1 TBSP of Rosemary dried
  • 2 TBSP of Thyme dried
  • 1 CUP of Tomato paste
  • 2 TBSP of Pork base
  • 1 CUP of Pork gravy powder
  • 1 GALLON of Water
  • 2 CUPS of Flour all purpose
  • ½ CUP of Butter
  • ½ CUP of Olive oil
  • 5 CUPS of Green peppers diced large


  1. Rinse pork with cold water. Then drain until completely dry.
  2. Dredge pork in flour. Then sauté in oil and butter combination until lightly brown.
  3. Transfer the pork to another container. Then in the same sauté pot, add celery, carrots, onion, and garlic.
  4. Sauté for 4 to 5 minutes. Add tomato paste and herbs. Then deglaze with red wine. Cook for a few minutes. Then add pork and mix well.
  5. Add pork base, water, seasoning, and green peppers. Then lower the heat and simmer for 1 hour or until the pork is tender.
  6. Whisk in pork gravy and bring to a boil.

Dutch Gouda Mashed Potato:

  • 15 LBS of Potato russet peeled diced into 2"
  • 2 CUPS of Butter soft cubed
  • 5 CUPS of Gouda cheese shredded
  • 2 TBSP of Salt
  • 2 TBSP of Pepper white ground
  • 8 CUPS of Heavy cream cold


  1. In a large stock pot, add potatoes and cover with cold water. Add 4 tbsp of salt.
  2. Cook potatoes until fork tender. Then drain completely. Transfer into a standing electric mixer.
  3. Add seasoning, butter, and cream. Then using the flat peddle, slowly mix the potatoes on a low speed until combined.
  4. Add cheese gradually and increase speed until a good whipped consistency. Transfer into a serving pan.

Banket Dutch Almond Pastry Dessert:

  • 7 EA of Pastry puff dough 10" x 15" defrosted
  • 1 CUP of Butter melted
  • 7 CUPS of Almond toasted ground
  • 2 CUPS of Brown sugar
  • 2 TBSP of Vanilla extract
  • 2 CUPS of Liquid egg
  • 1 TEASP of Salt
  • 1 CUP of Butter soft
  • 1 CUP of Flour all purpose
  • 2 TBSP of Almond extract
  • 2 TBSP of Lemon zest
  • ½ TEASP of Nutmeg ground


  1. In a large saucepan, combine almond ground, flour, soft butter and sugar and sauté on medium heat until a pasty consistency.
  2. Add liquid egg, vanilla, nutmeg, lemon zest, and salt and keep mixing and folding until a thick form. Transfer into a shallow pan and chill.
  3. Lay pastry puff dough on a floured clean surface and generously brush each sheet with melted butter.
  4. Divide almond paste evenly between the seven sheets and stretch horizontally on the bottom of each sheet.
  5. Roll each sheet tight and tuck from the bottom to the top. Lay on the sheet pan over parchment paper the brush over with butter.
  6. Bake at 375 f oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until dough is golden brown.
  7. Cool at room temperature. Then using a serrated knife, slice each log on bias into a 2 oz slice. Serve with caramel sauce, whipped cream, and strawberry puree.

Activities for the Port of Call:

For the Port of Call, the affiliated Life Enrichment Departments will offer fun activities for the residents that encompass the culture of Rotterdam. The activities listed here are subject to change. Here are some examples of the fun activities that some affiliated communities plan to offer!

Piedmont Health & Rehab Center

Piedmont Health and Rehab are planning a windmill and tulip craft decoration, canoe races, and a cheese tasting!

Maple Heights Health & Rehab Center

For this month’s Port of Call, Maple Heights tentatively wants to play pinball and glow in the dark mini golf. They also plan to have the residents participate in a fun Netherlands craft.

Sage Bluff Health and Rehabilitation

Sage Bluff residents will enjoy coffee and stroopwafels, a Dutch-themed happy hour, and paint a Netherlands-theme craft.

Autumn Care of Biscoe

For this month’s Port of Call, Autumn Care of Biscoe plan to watch a travel video of Rotterdam, play an all around the world relay game, and have a coloring contest featuring tulip coloring pages!

Port of Call

Saber Healthcare is proud to offer the Port of Call program to residents in participating communities. We hope the residents enjoy the fun activities and the delicious cuisine of Rotterdam, Netherlands!

Saber Healthcare is an organization dedicated to providing consultant services to long-term care providers. This article is for informational purposes and is not meant to be seen as professional advice. Please consult with a medical expert before relying on the information provided.


  1. “History of Rotterdam.” Rotterdam University of Applied Science. Accessed 21 December 2023. Link:,%2C%20transport%2C%20industry%20and%20distribution.
  2. “Rotterdam Netherlands.” Rotterdam Netherlands Your Guide In And Around The City. Accessed 21 December 2023. Link:
  3. “Rotterdam, Netherlands – Intercultural City.” Council of Europe. Accessed 21 December 2023. Link:
  4. Steffen, Lili. “Which Languages Are Spoken in the Netherlands?” Babbel Magazine. Accessed 21 December 2023. Link:
  5. “Markthak.” Accessed 21 December 2023. Link:
  6. “Erasmus Bridge.” Accessed 21 December 2023. Link:
  7. “Experience, Protect, Blijdorp.” Diergaarde Blijdorp Rotterdam Zoo. Accessed 21 December 2023. Link:
  8. “Bezoek de Euromast in Rotterdam.” Euromast Rotterdam. Accessed 22 December 2023. Link:
  9. Emms, Stephen. “A local’s guide to Rotterdam: secrets of the Netherlands’ second city.” Accessed 22 December 2023. Link:,delicious%20Portuguese%20past%C3%A9is%20de%20nata.
  10. “6 Dutch Dishes to Try in Rotterdam.” Accessed 22 December 2023. Link:
  11. “15 Delicious Dishes and Restaurants in Rotterdam, Netherlands.” Skye Travels. Accessed 22 December 2023. Link:
  12. “Where to eat local?” Accessed 22 December 2023. Link:
  13. Cismaru, Joanna. “Dutch Meatball (Bitterballen). Accessed 22 December 2023. Link:
  14. Abitbol, Vera. “Kibbeling.” 196 Flavors. Accessed 22 December 2023. Link: