Off to Belgium in Our Minds

My husband Vaughn's birthday is this Saturday and plans are in the works for his special dinner. We were thinking of going to the Hopleaf, but since there will be six attending we figured it would get too expensive. So instead, we are going to cook a Belgian feast and accompany the spread with Belgian brews.

Why Belgian? First, Vaughn brews beer and the Belgians are renowned brewers. Second, Belgian food is delicious. The food has a strong French influence, with a hint of German and Dutch cuisine...mostly French, but it lacks all the pretentiousness.

To prepare, we have been looking for Belgian recipes and cookbooks. We ordered Everybody Eats Well In Belgium by Ruth Van Waerebeek and Maria Robbins. This book sounds delicious and gets rave reviews, even from people who live or have lived in Belgium. Bonus: it's in English and the measurements aren't metric!

We also found The Belgian Cook-Book by Mrs. Brian Luck and published in 1915. It has authentic recipes, although some of the terms are a little hard to get used to. For instance, she writes "pips" instead of "seeds". We enjoyed this quote from the preface:

"A shelf of provisions should be valued, like love-making,
not only for itself but for what it may become."

I will write more once we figure out Saturday's menu and I'll most likely post some photos, so check back soon!

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