Our Speculaas are baked at The Holland American Bakery in Sussex, NJ on Route 23. We are located in the most northwestern part of New Jersey, one hour + from New York City, and 10 minutes south of High Point State Park. Our cookies are a favorite with many people here in our area as well as with others around the U.S. People have traveled from as far as Virginia just to purchase them!
This Speculaas recipe comes straight from Holland and is a family secret. (We are so sorry, but there are no recipe's on this website.) We are now in the third generation here, in the United States. Walter Valkema came to the U.S. in 1952 and started working at a local farm to support his family. He did not like milking cows very much, and was not very good at it. So he started baking out of his small oven in their house part time. Once things got moving along with the breads and cookies, he quit working on the farm. He expanded to their garage with a commercial oven, bought a few trucks and delivered goods to other Dutchmen who were homesick and longed for the tastes of home.
In 1966 his son, Sam Valkema, took over the business and expanded even more. He and his wife Dotty remodeled the store and house to resemble an authentic Dutch building. They also introduced more delft blue collectibles to give the shop the atmosphere of Holland.
Sam and Dotty Valkema
In January of this 1999, Sam's son, Owen, and his wife, Stephanie, took over running the business. Their plans are to open the store to the Internet public and sell most of their baked items as well as collectibles on-line. They are very excited about this and hope you will be interested in this service.
Speculaas are crunchy spice cookies and a delicious compliment to tea time or any time. If you are not a fan of crunchy cookies you can subject them to humidity and they become soft. They freeze wonderfully and are not high in fat.
Speculaas are the traditional Santa Klass Cookie that we make year round. At Christmas time we also make Poppen (dolls) and many things with almond paste such as Banket letters, Almond letters, Staven, Almond tarts and filled Speculaas. A complete order form is being worked on at the present time. Please excuse the inconvenience of ordering other items than Speculaas. Thank you for your interest.