Wednesday, July 3, 2013

surprise, surprise

What´s the first thing that comes to mind when I say ¨gas station¨? Maybe an underslept truck driver buying cigarettes or a disgruntled elderly couple getting iced tea.

There´s no doubt that a  gas station is a safe haven for purely North American goods like jumbo Hershey´s bars and piping hot hot dogs. And how can I forget to mention the expansive choise of slurpee? Brainfreeze is one of my favorite childhood memories.

Despite all this bad, there is some good (yeah, right). If you look closely, a gas station in the US like 7-11 or WaWa may tickle your multicultural senses. Next to a gritty coffee machine, you may stumble on a Dutch delicacy, Stroopwafel.

I first learned of Stroopwafel while researching Dutch culture for a class project. My team and I choose this because it seemed manageable for our meager culinary skills. It´s not turning out to be quite so easy. The Stroopwafel is essentially two crunchy waffles stuck together by way of syrup, honey, or some combination of both. We´ve searched multiple ethnic grocery stores and mainstream US grocers but to no avail.

After a few weeks without any leads on how to actually make waffles to Stroopwafel consistency, we hit a dead end. 

Until today. 

Out of nowhere, a teammate of mine tells me we´re going to 7-11. I didn´t question it. (Afterall, he was my ride home). Besides being at the epitome of  all things ¨ghetto¨, this place didn´t even have slurpees, shaking my faith in everything I ever knew. 

But you bet that next to a gritty coffee machine was a basket filled with individually wrapped Stroopwafel. 

 Never would I have gone to a 7-11 in search of culinary inspiration...or Stroopwafel. 

I don´t really know how this helps my team, though. We still have to figure out how to make this thing without a proper wafflemaker. Maybe it just settles my soul knowing I can find a crumb of western european existence in even the darkest corners of my country. (Yes, 7-11 is a dark corner of my world).

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