Belgian Cuisine and Recipes
Information about Belgian Cooking plus lots of
Cooking by Country - June 2003
to:- Belgium Featured Ingredient
Belgium Speciality Dish |
Cooking by Country Main Page
amidst France, Luxembourg, Germany and Holland with a very small coastline on
the North Sea, Belgium is situated in the temperate region of Western Europe.
One of the most underrated world cuisines, it's a country where northern Germanic culture melds with Southern French culture, both of
which are evident in its cuisine.
Times and Influences on Belgian Cooking
region which now constitutes Belgium has been invaded and ruled by many people
over the centuries including Celts, Romans in 56 BC who
ruled for four centuries, Franks in 455 AD at which time the demarcation
between the Flemish and Walloons was established, Vikings in 830 AD, Spanish, Austrians and French in turn and the cuisine of Belgium is a
true reflection of its history.
techniques and ingredients were assimilated from all these cultures as was
the habit of farming and keeping domesticated animals: prehistoric "Belgians" were mainly
the middle ages a distinct Belgian cuisine had taken shape and by this
time Belgium became the centre of the North European spice trade. Spices
such as ginger, saffron, cinnamon, nutmeg, and peppercorns, were
used to season many dishes and even beer - a practice which still exists in
of which, a special mention must be made about Belgian Beer which is not only
the country's national drink, but also widely used in cooking, a fact to which many of the
recipes featured on this page will testify. One reason for this
perhaps, is the aforementioned additions of spices and sometimes fruit to
the beers brewed at this time, creating differences in flavour and making them
perfect as an ingredient in recipes.
played a large role in Belgian cooking, with potatoes being a staple and
featured heavily in meals. Brussels
Sprouts were sold in the markets in Brussels as far back as the 1200's but it's
the Belgian Endive which has a more interesting history. It was accidentally
discovered by a Belgian farmer, Jan Lammers, in 1830. Upon returning from
war he found his stored chicory which he'd previously grown and used for
coffee, had sprouted white leaves, the taste of which he found very
distinctive. You can read more about Endive in the
there's chocolate. Always held in the highest esteem in Belgium, it's not
surprising that in 1912, they created The Praline - a
chocolate shell with a delicious filling.
Day Belgian Cuisine
it surprise you to know that Belgium has highest number of restaurants
earning Michelin stars per capita and that McDonalds (the fast food burger
joints which have sprung up all over the globe) consistently lose money in
Belgium? A testament to the Belgian's love affair with good food freshly
prepared from the finest of ingredients.
day Belgian cuisine still has its roots firmly planted in homely Medieval cookery.
Spices, mustard, vinegars and beer are still widely used in savoury and sweet
recipes and whilst there is a definite French touch to many recipes, the dishes
are generally more substantial comfort foods. Fresh herbs are also still extensively used,
in particularly chervil, tarragon, thyme, parsley, and chives.