Food Truck Festival Trek; The best place to spend this weekend

Do you like food? Do you like music? Do you like wine? If the answer to at least one of these questions is ‘Yes!’, then I have good news for you! Food Truck Festival Trek is coming to Utrecht this weekend!

 

If you are a food or music enthusiast, make sure you check it out, taste some bites, drink a glass of wine or beer and enjoy the atmosphere and music. Trek is a food truck festival, which means there will be lots of different food trucks offering a variety of foods from sushi to fries, falafel and ribs. So, no matter your taste, you will always find something yummy!

 

But despite Trek being a food truck festival, they have more to offer than just lunch or dinner. The entrance to the festival is free, and you can come from 16h on Thursday and Friday, or from 14h on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Spending a whole day at Trek is definitely not a punishment, since besides food they also have a craft beer bus, a cocktail bar and a wine bar!

 

When your stomach is full and you just want to sit back and relax a bit, the live music will help you get in the right mood. Utrecht’s best musical talent will be performing at the festival, along with a theatre caravan and old-school fair classics that for sure will give you a good laugh. And when the sun sets, dance the night away with the best funk, soul and dance hits from the eighties!

 

The festival will take place in Griftpark from Thursday the 1st till Monday the 5th of June. So, if you are still wondering how to spend the long Pentecost weekend, make sure to check it out and let us know how you liked it. We are definitely going, so see you there?

 

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Summertime Snacking!

Summertime Snacking

 

The sun is blazing,

Slowly your skin is bronzing,

What food looks amazing?

Let me help you!

 

Now that the sun is out, everyone seems to be out! Being indoors to cook food doesn’t always seem so pleasing when you also want to be outdoors enjoying the sun. So what yummy alternatives are there to grab and go here in Utrecht?


Italian Sandwich Huts!

Do you have lessons on Janskerkhofand wonder which hut to choose to buy a sandwich in-between your lessons? Or have you simply cycled past and noticed two huts standing in the square with outdoor seating and ever wonder what there was to offer? Well, don’t wonder anymore! They both offer Italian themed food, especially sandwiches. Do you fancy calzone, pastie, pizza, or a homemade sandwich? These dedicated sandwich artists wake up at 4am (as was informed) to begin baking the bread and pastries in order to bring you the best quality sandwich eating you could ever imagine! And just look at the size of them!

Right Hut – Described to have ‘true Italian’ ingredients as told by Italian sources. Dutch + Italian preference.

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Left Hut – Described to be fuller with various ingredients and variety. International preference (you will hear them chant Italiaanse Broodjes from their homes – they will come in herds).

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So which will you prefer? There is a silent war between the two, yet, overall they both provide food at a similar price and just as excellent quality.


Noodles – Eazie

Are you at the Neude and cannot be bothered to walk towards Janskershof for an Italian sandwich? Why not try Eazie, where you can create a box of your preference filled with a pick-and-mix choice of healthy goods? On the board above the staffs head you are guided on how to fill these snack boxes – rice or noodle – thin or thick – and how many veggies or meat you would prefer. Within 5 minutes, boom, your beautifully crafted and well thought out concoction of healthy goodies in your box and ready to go. Eazie – aye? Get it… easy… haha.. No? Ok. How about if I tell you ESN have a deal with Eazie! So bring your ESN card! Here is a photo of a small choice!

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Sweet choice

So, you have made your own sandwich or noodle/pasta at home or went to Jumbo/Plus/AH for snacks, but you want something cold? Well, there are many options for you! Of course, look out for Mr Icecream Bike man. He will most likely come and find you if you are in a very populated destination.

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Of course, if you are in Utrecht town you can find the ice-cream shops and stationary vans where you can get your cold goodies. These are dotted around everywhere, especially around the Dom area where you can get a Frozen Yoghurt, or a Fro Yo if you’re hip and down with the kids. Here is an example of a small Fro Yo located next to the Dom Tower neatly placed in a cute traditionally Dutch designed cup. This is small, the larger options did not come in this cute cup.  

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Before you leave Utrecht, as an international that is, you should definitely try each of these above. The guy on the bike selling ice-cream will see your desperate eyes and want for ice-cream. Once one person greets him, suddenly a group of people will come and more and more!

Keep cool over summer, hydrated and fed during those study breaks! There are snacks and food for all

Happy studying!

Strawberry heaven

One of the best things about spring and summer are all the tasty, fresh fruits and vegetables you can buy and combine in many different recipes. This time, however, the winner of the perfect fruit award goes to the delicious strawberries! Do you prefer the taste of this yummy fruit in your summer cocktail or are you more of a cake fan? Check out these recipes, and try out your culinary skills!

Strawberry Frosé

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Ingredients:

  • 1 bottle rosé (750 ml), chilled
  • 2 cups of chopped strawberries
  • 1/4 cup of vodka
  • 1/4 cup of fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cups of ice

What to do:

  1. Combine in a blender the following: half the bottle of rosé, 1 cup of strawberries, half the vodka, and half the lemon juice. Add 2 cups of ice and blend it all together.
  2. Repeat the same procedure adding the remaining ingredients.

How to serve:

Serve it immediately and add a few fresh strawberries on top! 🙂

Strawberry shortcake

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Ingredients:

Biscuits:

  • 2 cup of flour
  • ⅓ cup of sugar
  • 4 teaspoon of  baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • ½ cups of butter
  • 2 teaspoon of sour cream
  • 0.5 cup of  milk

Strawberry topping:

  • 2 packs of  strawberries
  • 2 teaspoons of sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of  orange-flavored liqueur or syrup (optional)

Whipped cream:

  • 1 cup of heavy cream
  • ⅓ cup of confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • ½ cup of sour cream

What to do:

Biscuits: Heat oven to 200 degrees. Take a large bowl and put flour, 1/3 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt and mix it all together. Cut in the butter with the pastry blender until mixture is crumbly. Stir in the sour cream, then gradually add 2/3 cup milk, stirring until mixture forms a dough.

Pat dough into a 6-inch by 8-inch rectangle shape and cut into 8 rectangles. Brush with the 2 teaspoons milk and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon sugar. Bake it for 12 minutes, until it gets gold.

Strawberry Topping: Several hours before serving, slice strawberries and toss with sugar and liqueur if desired.

Whipped Cream: Whip cream with confectioners’ sugar and vanilla just until soft peaks form; do not over whip. Fold in sour cream; cover and refrigerate.

How to serve:

Cut the biscuits in half and serve topped with strawberries, cream and syrup.

Rangpur Strawberry Crush

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Ingredients:

  • 4 strawberries
  • 300 ml of  Gin
  • 100 ml of lemon-lime soda

What to do: 

  1. Cut the strawberries and put them in a highball glass.
  2. Add crushed ice and Gin to it.
  3. Top with lemon-lime soda.

How to serve:

Serve immediately 🙂

 

 

How to date a Dutch guy

As you read in our Abroad magazine’s Spring edition – love is in the air! And the fact that the semester is coming to an end doesn’t mean you should give up on finding (and keeping) that cute Dutch guy you’ve had your eye on ever since you arrived in the Netherlands. But how do you go about getting what/who you want?

Where to find them

You might already have a person in mind, but if you’re still looking for that special someone, a big question could be: “Where do I meet Him?”. Sure, you could go to a bar and see what happens, but we have even better ideas for you!

 • Join a sports club / gym – most Dutchies actively pursue some sort of a sport (hockey and football are especially popular ones), so bumping into a bunch of cute guys is child’s play near sport fields and the gym. You getting healthy and in shape is just icing on the cake!

 • Go to funky concerts – Utrecht offers a wide variety of concerts from reggae to techno, so going to these parties is fun in itself. Finding someone who’s crazy about the same music as you is the dream, right?

 • Study in a café – Studying in the library is great for quiet productive time, but if your plan is to meet and talk to someone, move to a café with your books! Your study programme is also a great way to start a conversation.

 • Picnic in the park with friends – As the sun starts shining warmer, most of the Dutch make their way towards the parks to play football, picnic or just chill listening to music. Grab your friends and join the locals to meet the One!

 • Go to an ESN party – The ESN parties on Tuesdays in Poema are full of internationals who are in a similar situation to you. Meet like-minded people at the party or join any other ESN activities to have fun AND find love!

What to do once you’re dating

Finally, you found your crush! Now, you should know that Dutch guys can be quite different from the people you’ve dated back home. Make sure you watch out for the following pitfalls:

 • Make a move – The Netherlands is a highly emancipated country that prides itself in fighting for the equality of women. That, however, also implies that you shouldn’t sit around and wait for that cutie to ask you out – don’t be embarrassed to ask him yourself!

• Get used to directness – As you might have experienced already, the Dutch like to get straight to the point and express their opinions clearly. That can mean that he turns you down or he’ll tell you he’s also interested. Either way, at least you have a straight answer.

• Drop the games – Since the Dutchies are straightforward themselves, they prefer others to act like that too. That means: forget about complicated tactics and crazy plans and just be honest; it will work in your favour. 😉

 • Minimise makeup – Again, this is connected to the honesty argument. Dutch guys, just like any other nation’s men, appreciate a nice exterior, but if you turn up to a relaxed date in a long dress and full-on makeup, he’ll probably be taken aback – not in a positive way. Dress in a way that makes you feel at ease and doesn’t make him think you’re off to a gala!

 • PDA is not a Dutch quality – In some cultures, showing affection in public is widely accepted. However, don’t try to force a Dutch guy to get all cuddly and kissy in front of his friends; it will end up being an uncomfortable situation for everyone, which is not what you want, right?

 

There you go, our top advice on how to date a Dutchie! Even though these tips are applicable to the majority of Dutch men, each guy is a gem with his own quirks and kinks, so treat him nicely and use the aforementioned advice with care!

How did you meet your Dutch love? Let us know in a comment below!

3 must-run routes in Utrecht

Sometimes all you need is some fresh air and green space around you. So what’s a better way than putting on your running shoes and enjoying all what Utrecht’s got to offer? The best way to discover is to run around and see with your own eyes that there are other parts of the town besides the busy city centre. It is after all nicest to run somewhere where you aren’t bothered by cyclists and walkers. We found out the best places in Utrecht to run!

City centre – Singel route

A classic running route in Utrecht is the so-called Singel route. This route leads you around the historical city centre through a green area along the canals. The sandy paths are easy to run on and with 5K this route is perfect when you’re a newbie runner. Another nice advantage of this route is that it’s actually a round, so no running the same route again on your way back. Start at a point which is close to your house and keep your eyes open on this route, because there’s plenty to see!

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Uithof – Round Fort Rhijnauwen

If you live at the Uithof and you love running you’ve got an easy life, because you live in the middle of a green area! When you head towards the direction of the small town Zeist, you’ll find a big historical area of natural beauty. This route evolves around the historical Fort Rhijnauwen. The fortress was built in the 19th century as a part of the Hollandic Water Line. This series of water-based defences could be used to transform the provinces of Holland and Utrecht almost into an island as an excellent form of defence against enemy troops. Nowadays the old fort has been renovated and the area forms a perfect spot for running and relaxing. This route is only about 4K long, but if you want to extend the route the area offers plenty of opportunities.

uithof hardlopen

Overvecht – Along the Vecht

Another beautiful area is to be found on the eastside of town, so this route is ideal if you live at Tuindorp West Complex or in Overvecht. Over here the Vecht river, which later transforms into the Oude Gracht, meanders through the flat and green landscape. Along the Vecht is a nice sandy path with many houseboats. Salient detail; the houseboats used to be the red-light district of Utrecht until July 2013. Nowadays the path is perfect for running and walking your dog.

When you follow the path all the way to the small town Oud-Zuilen, you will run across two historical buildings: Fort aan de Klop and Slot Zuylen. Fort aan de Klop is another fortress part of the Hollandic Water Line, but Slot Zuylen was already built in the 16th century and knows a long history. This route is for the somewhat more experienced runner since it counts about 15K, but it’s definitely worth training for!

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So where are you waiting for? Put on your running shoes and go!

Survive your internship with these 5 tips

A long, long time ago, the grass was still green and the skies were still blue. Studying just meant sleeping in and chilling and you had no idea what it would be like to do an internship. Well now you know, and you wish you never did. And although internships can be hard, especially in the beginning, here are some tips on how to get through your internship period.

 

1. Don’t stay up too late

This one might almost seem too obvious, but it is crucial! For you to wake up early every day of the week and drag yourself into the office, you must have had a good night sleep. So don’t stay up until midnight watching all those Netflix series – we know it’s tempting, but try to at least get 8 hours of sleep a night. Not only will it be a lot easier to wake up in the morning, but you will also feel better during the day. Sleep deprivation can cause a lack of concentration and headaches,but, in the worst-case scenario, it can lead to obesity, hallucinations and depression. So, don’t take sleep lightly, and hit the sack early!

 

2. Coffee is your friend, but don’t overdo it

Speaking of concentration issues and tiredness, coffee may seem like an easy fix after a short night’s sleep. But mind you, although coffee will temporarily make you feel more awake and focused, too much caffeine is actually bad for you! It is advised to only have up to 400 milligrams of caffeine a day, which is the equivalent of roughly four cups of coffee. You can safely enjoy a good cup of coffee in the morning and one after lunch, just don’t keep running to the coffee corner all day long 😉 Instead, have some tea or water!

 

3. Prepare yourself!

As with a lot of difficult things, preparation is key! Waking up 5 minutes before you need to leave your house will cause you lots of stress in the morning, and you will probably be late more than once. To avoid stressing out in the morning, wake up in time. Also, try to prepare everything you can the night before. Make your sandwiches, pack your bag and maybe even lay down your clothes for the next day, so that when you wake up, you’re almost good to go!

 

4. Relaxation is vital

Everyone who has ever done an internship knows that it is a lot of hard work and might cause you quite some stress. It is therefore super important to make sure you get the relaxation you need! Don’t crowd your agenda every night with parties, dinners and other activities – instead, also plan nights off. Chill, read a book or do whatever you do to clear your mind and rest. Try to avoid computer or tv screens, because blue-light emitting devices have a negative effect on your sleep! And after all, no one can go without their beauty sleep.

 

5. Learn as much as you can

The internship-filled weeks and months ahead may seem endless, but believe me when I say that time flies and it will be over before you know it. Internships might be tiring and hard work, but they are also the perfect opportunity to get to know the workplace and your chosen profession. Instead of slacking off, try to learn as much as you can every day. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, because that’s the only way you can learn new things. 

 

Hopefully these tips will help you to make the most of your internship and learn as much as you can. What are your survival tips for fellow interns? Leave a comment below!

4th of May: Honoring those who passed during WW2 in the Netherlands

The horror that happened during World War II has brought about a spread of suffering across Europe. The Netherlands, however, is the only country that commemorates the victims on two separate days. On May 4th we pay a tribute to the lives we lost due to wartime violence (Remembrance day) and on the consecutive day, May 5th, we celebrate our regained freedom. May 5th 1945 is the day on which the German army capitulated. Members of the Dutch resistance found it was inappropriate to combine the remembrance of the people who died, and the celebration of our freedom on the same day. This is why the Dutch government decided, just years after the war ended, to use two separate days. They felt like the emotions that went along with both events were incompatible. We agree, which is why we will use this blog to inform you on the Netherlands during wartime, and the remembrance of those who passed. If you want more info on Liberation day, and the accompanying events, check out our recent blogpost.

The Netherlands during wartime (1940 – 1945)

During the first World War the Netherlands maintained a status of neutrality. Despite the neutral status, the country was pressured extensively due to its geographical position between the German Empire, occupied Belgium and the UK. After the start of World War II, the Netherlands proclaimed neutrality again, however this time, the neutral status ended quickly when Hitler decided that Nazi Germany should invade the Netherlands.

A German attack on the Netherlands on the 10th of May 1940 announced the beginning of the second World War in the Netherlands.  On May 14th Germany demanded capitulation of Rotterdam, one of the most important transportation ports in the continent. Even though the city agreed to capitulation, the Germans nevertheless bombed the city. The people of Rotterdam had nothing they could do, but to seek a place to hide from the violence. Around 800 to 900 people were killed, and big parts of the city (an estimated 30.000 buildings) were completely ruined during this horrific night.

Life in the occupied Netherlands

After its occupation by the Nazi’s, the Royal family and government managed to flee the country, and they became a government-in-exile in the UK. However, for the civilians of the Netherlands life got worse… The Germans had imposed forced labor on the country. All men between the age of 18 – 45 had to work in German factories or at German farms. Many tried to hide or flee. Soon after the war started, the persecution of Dutch jews, sinti and disabled people began. The Jewish Council (Joodse Raad) was installed, an organization with a board of Jewish men. The Council served as an indirect instrument for the organization of the deportation of Jews. The board was convinced by the Germans that they were helping the Jews. However, due to the orderly measures it was a lot easier for the Germans to track down Jewish families. Its effectiveness shows in the terrible amount of people who were taken and brought to concentrations camps. At the time, the Netherlands was the home of around 140.000 Jews, at the end of the war only 38.000 survivors returned home.

Next to the help of the Jewish Council, there were people that deliberately collaborated with the occupier. Some people joined the German army (Waffen-SS), other were actively involved in capturing Jews in exchange for money. Approximately 8.000 Jews were denounced to the Germans, and sent to death camps. The Dutch nationalistic movement (NSB) had its headquarter in Utrecht. This political party was also actively involved in the persecution of Dutch Jews and Sinti.

Dutch resistance

Despite the many people who helped the Germans in order to exterminate the Jewish population in the Netherlands, there were likewise people who fought against the Germans in order to protect their compatriots. The Dutch resistance started slowly, but eventually played a crucial role in the liberation of the Netherlands by the Allies. Throughout the war many small and independent resistance groups helped the Jews by falsifying food stamp cards,  collecting intelligence, publishing underground newspapers and sabotaging phonelines and railways. One of the biggest accomplishments of the Dutch resistance was the hiding of Jews. They helped families to cover up hiding places and by sheltering people in need. In total, the Dutch resistance was able to seek shelter for around 25.000 Jews. Many times the resistance was able to save the lives of young children by smuggling them to the North of the country, where they would stay with Dutch farm families until the end of the war. In addition, a secret mission succeeded and around 600 Jewish children were saved from deportation.

Commemorate those who lost their lives

The horror that took place in the Netherlands between 1940 – 1945 should never be forgotten. That is why we commemorate the lost lives on the 4th of May. On this day we honor the victims of the Second World War. However, we are aware that elsewhere in the world people are still suffering from violence and war. This day is also about them. Every year on the 4th of May at 08.00 pm the Netherlands is two minutes silent for the victims of war in the Netherlands, and around the world. Make sure you remain silent for those two minutes, as it is very important to us Dutch to be respectful towards the survivors and victims of the war. The National Committee of May 4th and 5th organizes a national memorial on the Dam square in Amsterdam, which is very impressive to attend. Additionally, many municipalities host their own memorial events.

Hopefully this blog has given you a peek in the history of war in the Netherlands. The terrible things that happened should never occur again. Show your companionship to the Dutch by standing by our side during this important day.

 

Behind the scenes – spring covershoot

It’s the 6th of March. We are lucky because spring is in the air! We chose a perfect day: a blue sky with a few clouds, a beautiful garden with lovely purple flowers and the sun that shone regularly. We are shooting our new cover for the spring edition of the ABROAD magazine! The shoot is located in ‘De Oude Hortus’, the garden in the University Museum. From 1723 till 1920 it was the Botanic Garden of the University of Utrecht. The garden is located through the Lange Nieuwstraat and the Nieuwegracht.

Our team of today consists of 4 of our JoCo members and two models. The models arrive exactly on time at the location and we start casually with a coffee to discuss our plans. Today we’re working with Anshul and Elvira, two internationals that are studying in Utrecht. It’s amazing how these two have appeared as thought they areas professional models. A big thanks to the both of you!

Trough a photo diary we would like to give you an inclination of this great day!

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Before our models have arrived Maaike and Evelijn have been searching for the perfect spots for our shoot. Aren’t these spots looking amazing??

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Inside or outside?                              This doesn’t look really Dutch!

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Strike a pose Evelijn!

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Ready to take off!                               Okay not yet… 😉

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First location!

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Our second location! It is amazing to see how comfortable our models are together. Posing if they do this every day  🙂

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Single shoot of the models

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Third location, such a spring feeling right?!

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Annalise is working on the final picture!

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Amazing reflection effect in the water

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The team of the spring covershoot!

We still need to find models for our last ABROAD of the year! Do you enjoy posing for the camera and do you want to help us out? If that’s a yes come and send us an email. @ will.eke.geertsema@hotmail.com 🙂

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