Strongly influenced by its proximity to southern France, yet retaining rustic, homely traits from its medieval past, Belgian cuisine combines haute cuisine and fine ingredients with comfort food and substantial portions. Following centuries of invasion by numerous powers, including the Romans, Vikings, Spanish, Austrians and French, Belgium became the centre of the northern European spice trade during the Middle Ages. This resulted in the assimilation of many spices, including ginger, saffron, nutmeg, cinnamon and peppercorns, into every aspect of the culinary culture, including its world-renowned beer-making industry.
In this beautiful new book, Suzanne Vandyck explores the fascinating history, rich culture and social traditions of the Belgian people, and the development of their unique cuisine. Characteristic ingredients include fresh vegetables, in particular potatoes and Belgian endives; a range of flavourings, including spices, vinegars, mustards and beers; and, of course, exquisite chocolate. Game, meat, fish and shellfish are also popular, and mussels are cooked and eaten in every possible form.
This wonderful collection of recipes evokes the glorious tastes and textures of traditional Belgian cooking. Dishes range from sumptuous soups and mouthwatering appetizers, to succulent meat and poultry dishes, delicate fish and shellfish, divine desserts and a tempting selection of cakes and bakes. All the classics are covered, including Cream of Endive Soup, Flemish-style Asparagus, Beef Stew with Beer, Steamed Mussels with Celery and Onion, Belgian Frites and Chocolate Mousse, providing a comprehensive guide to this glorious cuisine.
Packed with over 300 specially commissioned, inspirational pictures and delicious, easy-to-follow recipes, as well as cook's tips, variations and complete nutritional information, this unique new book is essential reading for anyone who loves to explore new cuisines and cook good food.