My Oma and Opa used to come from The Netherlands to Canada every other year when I was little usually around Christmas time to visit us. This was over forty years ago and they were the absolute epitome of old world charm. My Opa smelled of fragrant pipe smoke and carried a pocketknife (even on the plane!!) which he used to peel me countless oranges while I leaned against his knees. He carefully opened every orange like a flower before removing every string of clinging pith. My Oma was beautiful with a glorious Gibson girl hairstyle adorned with soft white streaks and wore lovely patterned circle skirts and high heels every day. They spoke a different language and although my mother seemed to have a rocky relationship with them I thought they were magical.
Part of this magic was their wonderful suitcases from which they pulled treat after present after novelty from their country across the world. I'm sure half their offerings were smuggled in but to be honest at 6 years old I did not care. We gorged on sharp aged Gouda, tried salty black licorice and ate spicy windmill cookies with weak tea. My favorite treat was the jars of chocolate hazelnut spread they brought just for me. I was the only kid in school who brought chocolate sandwiches for lunch. I still love Nutella even though it is not as magical on my grocery store shelf as emerging out of my grand parents suitcase. This perfect flavor combination is perfect for cakes, icing, and fillings. Create a little magic in your home with this old fashioned kid and adult favorite today.