Dutch New Herring is only available in June. Nevertheless, you can eat a herring all year long. When you visit the Netherlands make sure to hop into one of our fish stores and eat a fresh herring. We call this delicacy “Hollandse Nieuwe”. To eat a fresh herring should be one of your top priorities. Some say a new herring tastes heavenly like an angel walking over your tongue. The taste of a fresh herring cannot be compared to anything. It is soft, slightly salty, and above all it is fresh. Dutch fresh Herring is a big thing but one loves it or hates it. Send me a picture of yourself eating a Dutch herring and do let me know what you think of this typical Dutch delight.
Dutch New Herring is a Traditional Dish
Well, when we talk about “Hollandse Nieuwe” we speak about a Dutch New Herring. It is a traditional Dutch delicacy with a rich history and great cultural significance in the Netherlands. This dish is a lightly salted herring caught during the spring season when the herrings are at their peak condition.
Dutch New Herring definitely is a Dutch delight
A fresh raw herring or “Hollandse Nieuwe” is a typical Dutch delicacy. This street food is especially popular in the summer months. The raw herring has been specially treated to get its distinctive taste. A herring is only called “Hollandse Nieuwe” when it is young and lean, and caught between May and July.
Dutch New Herring is called “Hollandse Nieuwe” in Dutch
If you eat a “Dutch Nieuwe”, the taste is mild and soft, with a slightly salty undertone. The texture of the fish is tender and juicy, not chewy. Many people describe the taste as fresh and slightly sweet with a creamy aftertaste. The mild fish flavor is often complemented by the fresh taste of onion and the spicy aroma of finely sliced gherkins often served together with the herring.
The best way to eat a Dutch herring?
Traditionally, a herring is eaten on a bun, known as “herring with onions”. You can open the bun, put the herring on top, and then sprinkle some chopped onions on top. This is a popular way to enjoy the Hollandse Nieuwe.
The taste of a Hollandse Nieuwe Herring
Tastes are subjective and individual preferences may vary. Some people like the delicate taste of herring, while others may not like it so much because of its specific fishy taste. If you have the chance, it is definitely worthwhile tasting a fresh herring or “Hollandse Nieuwe” when you are in the Netherlands. Get your own impression. And send us a selfie eating your first herring.
A Herring a day keeps the doctor away.
What more is there to know about a Hollandse Nieuwe?
- Seasonal Delicacy: Hollandse Nieuwe herring is only available during a specific time of the year, usually from May to July. This limited availability adds to its allure and excitement among the Dutch people and tourists alike.
- Mildly Salted: The herring is traditionally gutted and then brined in a mixture of salt and water. The mild salting process enhances the flavor and texture of the fish without overpowering it.
- Raw Consumption: One of the most popular ways to enjoy Hollandse Nieuwe is raw, by eating it as-is. The herring is usually served whole, often with chopped onions and pickles. You can hold the herring by its tail and lower it into your mouth, savoring the delicate taste.
- Herring Stalls and Festivals: During the herring season, you can find herring stalls throughout the Netherlands, selling this delicacy to locals and tourists. There are even festivals and events celebrating the arrival of the first catch of Hollandse Nieuwe.
- Health Benefits: Herring is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for heart health. It also contains essential nutrients like vitamin D and vitamin B12.
- Cultural Tradition: The herring fishing and eating culture has been part of Dutch heritage for centuries. It is not just about the taste but also represents a connection to maritime traditions and history.
- Rituals: The first barrel of Hollandse Nieuwe herring is often sold at a charity auction, and the proceeds are donated to a good cause. The “herring party” celebrates the start of the herring season, and it is a joyous occasion for many Dutch people.
Overall, “Hollandse Nieuwe”, in English you would say “Dutch New Herring”, is a beloved delicacy in the Netherlands. Enjoying this culinary tradition can be a unique and delicious cultural experience while visiting our country during the herring season in June e and July.