Things to eat in Belgium
If you consider Belgian cuisine unhealthy and uninteresting, you must come here yourself and see that the truth is just the opposite! The local port cities have served as windows to the world for centuries. And it was from around the world that various exotic products were brought, which together with local delicacies gave rise to some unique dishes.
Her Highness The Chip
There can be only one queen of the Belgian table. The Chip! According to some reports, potatoes were brought to Europe via the port in Antwerp as early as in the 16th century. They were cooked in various manners, but the local invention was to cut them into strips and and then fry in very hot oil. The method was soon accepted and became popular around the world, and chips have become a staple addition to meat of fish since then. This why you may be wondering what to have in addition to the traditional chips in Belgium. The answer is: nothing! The are the classics of their own, and except for mayonnaise (which is the most popular sauce, but you can also take some others like ketchup, thousand island, garlic etc.), they do not need any company. When in Brussels, Gent, Bruges or any other place in Belgium, just come up to a food truck, order a portion to go and, like the locals do, sit down on a bench or in a park, and enjoy the simple and delicious flavour. If you like street food, have a waffle. This is another Belgian delicacy served with powdered sugar, cream, fruits or chocolate topping.
Chocolate and beer
When it comes to chocolate, Belgian one is unparalleled, although it competes even with e.g. Swiss. The sweet dispute can be best resolved by yourself. Just try both. Besides, it was a Swiss citizen, Jean Neuhaus, who settled down in Brussels and quite by accident invented the praline. Today, Belgian shops with products made from the cocoa tree seed resemble small art galleries. They temp customers with their masterpieces from the very threshold, and you will surely be unable to resist. You can buy a few sweets for dessert to go with a cup of coffee, or you can go for a whole bar, which you can use to prepare a sweet and warming drink in a winter evening. However, if cooling down, not warming up, is what you are after, then have Belgian beer, the country's pride. Belgium's brewing traditions date back to the Middle Ages, and today there are several hundred brands of beer brewed in more than three thousand breweries.
Brussels sprouts, chicory, asparagus
Although Belgians were importing vegetables from around the world, they got an idea to invent one of their own! To this end, they crossbred cabbage with kale and produced a small cabbage, which they called… Brussels sprout. They serve it either stewed or cooked as an addition to meat and fish. Belgians were also the ones who, somehow by accident, grew chicory. It has become a valued replacement for cocoa seeds, and is often added to salads. It can also be served stewed in butter with herbs or balsamic sauce. When trying such vegetarian dishes, don't forget about white asparagus topped with egg sauce. They just melt in your mouth.
North Sea seafood
Apart from "countrywide" chips, things you can eat in Belgium will depend from the region. When in Walloon, you can expect some French influences, and in Flanders - some Dutch accents. In both regions, fish and seafood are equally popular. Freshly caught, they are a simple but very exquisite dish. Grey shrimps and oysters are held in high esteem. Eel in green sauce made from parsley leaves, spinach and dock will also be a good choice. Delicious and very healthy!
Since beer is the most famous Belgian drink, Belgian cuisine is based on this product to a big extent. Beer is used here to stew e.g. chunks of beef. Soft goulash in beer sauce is thickened with bread (without the crust) smeared with mustard. If you like meat, you can try rabbit with dried plums.
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