Friet speciaal (special chips/fries) is a popular Dutch snack. There are a couple of versions, but the most popular one consists of a portion of chips served with mayonnaise, curry sauce, and uitjes (finely diced raw onion). In the second version, the curry sauce is replaced with ketchup.
It’s possible to buy friet speciaal in most Dutch snack bars and from street vendors. If they do chips, the chances are they offer chips that have had the special treatment too. The idea of mixing curry sauce and mayonnaise may sound a little strange to some people, but it goes together well and tastes great.
Depending on the establishment, friet speciaal is normally served on a small plastic tray or in a paper cone and there are usually a couple of size options available. The cones of chips are fine, but eating friet speciaal, chips with mayo, or any other chip-sauce combination can get a little messy on the hand and fingers. Due to the fact the sauces are served on top of the chips, and always get on the paper at the top of the cone, as the cone starts to empty delving into it for the next chip invariably results in the hand making contact with the sticky paper. Friet special is usually served with a small plastic fork, but it’s not long enough to be of help when the chip level has moved lower down the cone.
The plastic trays work better. They normally have two compartments. A larger one for the chips and smaller companion for the mayo, curry sauce, and uitjes. Portion sizes tend to be generous. The chips are generally stacked high on the tray and it’s rare to run out of sauces before the supply of chips is gone. Next time you are in the Netherlands and feel like a quick and tasty snack, friet speciaal is an excellent choice. If chips are not your thing, or you feel like something a little more adventurous, it could be a good time to try a broodje haring (raw herring sandwich).