Stroopwafels are traditional Dutch cookies that are comprised of light syrup pressed between two pie-crust thin, slightly-spiced waffles (the name literally named “syrup waffle”). I’m familiar with this cookie because my aunt Colleen brings packs of them with each visit home to Shippensburg from the Netherlands (they’re somewhat of a family obsession), and when I visited Europe with my brother Chris when I was 15, we ate a palm-sized stroopwafel hot off a cast-iron griddle in an open-air Dutch market.
I was ecstatic when I discovered Stroopies, a Lancaster-based company that caught onto the trend of stroopwafels in America and now makes their version of the famed Dutch cookie. Here, you can buy two kinds of stroopwafels — either traditional (plain) or dipped with an American-sized portion of decadent dark chocolate. (My Dutch family may never let me visit again if I admit this, but I always buy the one with the chocolate.)
To eat a stroopwafel, tradition mandates that you first rest the cookie on the top of a hot cup of koffee or thee (tea) for a few seconds to gently heat the cookie and the syrup, as shown in the photo above. After heating, the syrup loosens along with the cookie’s flavors of caramel, hazelnut, and cinnamon. In the case of the chocolate-dipped stroopwafel, the deep, slightly-warmed chocolate melts into a gooey mess that complements the cookie’s spice.
I love stroopwafels because they encompass what I appreciate about Holland: they are cookies that you’re meant to take time eating. My Dutch uncle, as hard-working as my father, owns a business and works in a carpenter’s shop at his home, but he never fails to come inside mid-morning and mid-afternoon for a cup of coffee, a bit of conversation, and occasionally a slice of cake. Similarly, it seems to me that you can’t eat a stroopwafel on the run; you have to sit down with it, wait for the coffee to be brewed, and allowed the cookie to awaken.
I buy my stroopwafels individually or in packs each time I visit Folklore Coffee & Company in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania, but Stroopies are also available from a variety of local cafes and businesses including Groff’s Candies, Lancaster, and the Hershey Lodge, Hershey.
Stroopies have been profiled and approved by the Netherlands-America Association of Delaware Valley, Inc. in their spring 2012 newsletter, De Brug.
Folklore Coffee & Company
1 North Market Street
Elizabethtown, PA 17022
3587 Blue Lock Road
Lancaster, PA 17603
325 University Drive
Hershey, PA 17033