Green machine— Amsterdam


Most restaurants boast of using only fresh ingredients but they don’t come much fresher than at De Kas.

De Kas, restaurant

“It’s all about the freshest ingredients, their taste and aroma,” says chef Ronald Kunis (above) as he shows monocle around the extensive kitchen gardens of De Kas restaurant in Amsterdam’s Frankendael park. When owner Gert-Jan Hageman opened it in 2001, De Kas was the only restaurant in the city using sustainably sourced produce. “Today even the smallest eatery is into sustainable and organic food,” says Kunis. “Back then we were considered revolutionary – if not ‘hippie’.”

Kunis joined De Kas as sous-chef after stints at London’s River Café and…

Recipe 1

Goats’ cheese bruschetta

(Serves 2)
2 slices of white bread
100g goats’ cheese
2-3 garlic cloves
4 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil
Pinch of salt and pepper
8-10 leaves fresh basil
1 small bunch of thyme

The method

  1. Slice bread and drizzle olive oil on top. Toast until crispy.
  2. Lightly scrape garlic on top and crumble on the goats’ cheese generously. Sprinkle again with olive oil.
  3. Season to taste and garnish with thyme and basil.

Recipe 2

Roasted tomato soup

(Serves 2-4)
700g tomatoes
2 garlic cloves
1 small bunch of thyme, rosemary, basil
Half a lemon
Salt and pepper
4 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil
5-6 teaspoons of Tabasco

The method

  1. Roast the tomatoes and garlic in preheated oven [200C] for 30 minutes. Place in a blender, add olive oil, thyme, rosemary and blend for 30 seconds.
  2. Season with salt, pepper, Tabasco and lemon juice and serve warm or chilled, garnished with basil and tomato slices.

Growth industry

The nursery

With the freshest ingredients at heart, De Kas prides itself on using the best produce, most of it harvested from its own soil. Apart from the beautiful greenhouse and garden with Mediterranean herbs and edible flowers that’s attached to the restaurant, De Kas also owns a large field in the Beemster region, a 20-minute drive from the capital. While you can find owner Gert-Jan Hageman and chef Ronald Kunis taking care of the restaurant’s nursery on a daily basis, from May to October there are also guided tours to the fields in Beemster and hands-on workshops on everything to do with fruit and veg. With 16 types of tomatoes available and 1,200 sq m of land, there is indeed a lot to learn (and taste).


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