The Black Fermented Gribiche

Bar Centraal

For me, there is two ways of cooking… The simple and comfort one, that one that we know already, and the other side, the unknown. If you wanna travel to the “Unknown” is always better get away from the fire, and start just thinking… In our case at Bar Centraal, we don’t think too much about dishes or recipes, but we talk a lot about food… And almost every dish is a deep conversation, except for those that just in words are already a success… “Daikon and Pecorino”

Berend and Ricky fermented some leeks, so i make a “mayonnaise” that ended up looking like Gribiche (for those pieces of leeks in between). I made also a really green Leche de Tigre (Tiger Milk), i don’t know why i have that idea in mind for weeks…

Fernando: Which ingredients never use before here? …

Berend: Tofu, and chicks love Tofu!

Fernando: Maybe Tofu Ceviche???? _)(*&^%$#@!

Berend: Why Not!

Google: Tofu Ceviche is already a thing…

We try and… Hell Not!!! But we still have our Mayo and the Leche de Tigre looking for someone to make happy. We found some leeks without friends in the fridge and burn them till the limits is always a good idea… And with some left of the Sour Dough Bread Crumble an Unexpected baby was born.

Ricky came with the final touch… Some Mustard Cress, some Umami Glaze and the idea to Mix my Mayo, the Leche de Tigre and make everything Black… I wanted to use charcoal from long time ago, so was easy!

Burn Leeks, Fermented Black Gribiche (Why Not), Umami Glaze, Sour Dough Bread Crumble and Mustard Cress… OH! I Forgot, there is some hints of Spanish smoked paprika with the bread… Just a little bit of extra love!





I will never eat Brussels Sprouts…

Bar Centraal

Back in 2007 The name “FerAlaSopa” was born, with my second attempt of blogging!!! This is number 6 or something… Thanks to the universe we have Instagram!

For that time i ranked the things that i hate in the kitchen (use to hate), and Brussels Sprouts were number 1. How ironic is the life, that i end up in Amsterdam… “Eat Your Sprouts” they say here.

So this winter (2017-2018), during my Bar Centraal adventure, and with this Sprouts in season, i found not one way to love them, but two. Everything started with a question, If i need to eat a bowl of Sprouts, how they will be?

Bechamel!!! a thick and rich in butter béchamel, will be the solution to any problem… So that was the first version… Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Béchamel, Basil Oil and Smoked Almonds… I don’t know if was some Umami power in this dish, but was Definitely Yummy!

For the second version i travel a bit far… Cooking this year with Riccardo is been a great experience, he loves Korean food and everything that comes from around there, definitely not the typical Italian. So i think in that, and we make a Korean Marination with Apples, Pears, Sour Plums, Onions, Soya Sauce and Sesame Oil… Pure Umami! – And was born our second version… Roasted Brussels Sprouts with our Ultimate Korean Marination, Pickled Daikon, Sesame Seeds and Coriander.

Yumminess or Umami… Don’t Matters! Both versions were Delicious…

Italiano… Umami Puro!


Asia have the biggest Umami Pantry, but in this side of the world, Italians do… Starting with the pureness of tomatoes, finishing in the mastering of aging and curing. For that reason They have one of the most popular kitchen in the world… Something a little bit unfair… Spanish and Portuguese ingredients are not so far of this concept, and they are less popular.

So, if you take few tomatoes, some onions, garlic, anchovies and cook that till dead, boil some pasta, make it swim in the sauce and grate some good parmesan cheese on top, you have already an Umami Bomb. Now imagine that this can be your every day, just add cure ham, some truffles, porcini and Bam!

Is been a while since i wrote last time in my blog, i always say that Instagram is more fun! But when Riccardo and I make the Famous 8,5 Burrata in Bar Centraal “The Umami Bomb”, the idea just came out thinking Italian… Actually thinking in Pizza. I nice slice of pizza with mushrooms and extra mozzarella… Is melted mozzarella Umami??? or just Heaven?

So writing and cooking about this phenomenon, i decide to make one dish for each Umami Reflection… Hoping that motivate me to keep posting!

This time, I chop some tomatoes, onion, garlic, one anchovy and cook everything with a little bit (quiet a lot) of olive oil. Agains some Italians, I made Meat Balls, with dried aged milk cow from Holland… yeah some of them denied spaghetti and meat balls. So! i put everything together, boil some nice spaghetti and grate some nice parmesan on top! YAM!

If you will ask to your Nonna about Umami, she will know nothing… But i also she will give a fuck! She just know how to cook with the best ingredients…


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Espectacular Worst!!!



Bar and restaurant hunting days are back… Having my life on track again, and with almost all the mess fixed, I am working for brunch at Gs ‘A Really Nice Place’ in De Jordaan, literally a super really nice place, and I take the after work time to explore and walk around the city.

This weekend thanks to the recommendation and invitation of my friend Matthijs van Unen, i have a great experience at Worst WijnCafe… One of the best in long time…

Is one of this hidden places, away of the tourist madness and the noise… Lets say a real Amsterdammer spot. But the amazing part is that, is a place that confront you as a chef, with to many questions. We all know, that we live in practical times, “Home Made” is every day more standarized (Industrialised), so when they came with the Pulpo Terrine, i was like… Whao!!! In first place looks beautiful and perfectly in shape, after and no less or more important, flavour, texture and temperatura was great… I really love that dish and I give compliment to the chef for that “If you really make that terrine, super big compliments, like OLE” He explain me, and give me some tricks, we have a nice conversation about it. This is the cain of food that motivated me.

Next one was the Kreeftenworst ‘Lobster Sausage’… I was really doubting about it, well im really convencional person speaking about sausages. I remember long time ago my Mom get a machine and she learns how to make sausages, and for a moment she think that she can “Sausaged” everything… Well some experiments well not so good… Anyway, the Kreeftenworst was super tasty and amazing, i really love it… So challenge accomplished. Next One??? Maybe a Vegetarian Sausage? I never had a good one… think about it!

I know almost anything about wine, but i was amazed and quiet drunk with the wines, so i have a good time.

I will come back for more …

PD: I took the picture from the Worst WijnBar  official web side… all my picts were not so good… check my Instagram post!!!

Next Stop…… Tales & Spirit (I can be addicted to this place)


My Dreamed Jordaan


Long time ago, when I was new in the city, I used to dream with have a work and live in De Jordaan, in Amsterdam… as everyone I guess. For that reason, I arrive that day to Daalder and I met Gui, so my days of Glory officially started. Is been happening a lot this 2 years since that moment, and even when I no living in Amsterdam, my hearth is always in those streets.

For a matter of energy, decisions or destiny, recently I end up in that dreamed neighborhood. Doing brunch in A Really Nice Place… One more time thanks to Gui, I guess is my Amsterdam Savior.

Is painful wake up so early in the weekends, specially on Sundays when everybody is just finishing party… But the work is fun, colleagues are great, and I am mastering the art of poaching eggs (130 at day), i will keep you post abut it. I guess also that all the good and bad decisions of the last months leading me to this, and I happy for that.

Now I have another view of the city, what is feel be done at 5? And enjoy the after work Amsterdam treatments? Well is so cool, especially in this Christmas days… So The bar and restaurant hunting start again, from another perspective. This weekend was fantastic, Starting in De Blaffende Vis, Dinner at Worst and Some cocktails at Tales & Spirit… want to now more?

Follow me on Instagram @FerAlaSopa, and explore with me Amsterdam…