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Everybody Eats Well in Belgium Cookbook [Paperback]

Ruth Van Waerebeek , Maria Robbins
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

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Book Description

October 1996
It's a country that boasts more three-star restaurants per capita than any other nation-including France. It's a country where home cooks--and everyone, it seems, is a great home cook--spend copious amounts of time thinking about, shopping for, preparing, discussing, and celebrating food. With its French foundation, hearty influences from Germany and Holland, herbs straight out of a Medieval garden, and condiments and spices from the height of Flemish culture, Belgian cuisine is elegant comfort food at its best--slow-cooked, honest, bourgeois, nostalgic. It's the Sunday meal and a continental dinner party, family picnics and that antidote to a winter's day. In 250 delicious recipes, here is the best of Belgian cuisine. Veal Stew with Dumplings, Mushrooms, and Carrots. Potato and Leek Stoemp. Smoked Trout Mousse with Watercress Sauce. Braised Partridge with Cabbage and Abbey Beer. Gratin of Belgian Endives. Flemish Carrot Soup. Steak-Frites. Belgian Steamed Mussels. Belgian Steamed Mussels. Cognac Scented Flemish Waffles. And desserts, some using the best chocolate on earth: Belgian Chocolate Ganache Tart, Lace Cookies from Brugge, Almond Cake with Fresh Fruit Topping, Little Chocolate Nut Cakes. As Belgians explain it, since one has to eat three times a day, why not make a feast of every meal? 57,000 copies in print.

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From Publishers Weekly

In this charming introduction to a cuisine that fuses "French finesse" with German and Dutch country-cooking influences, Van Waerebeek, a Ghent native who teaches Belgian cooking in New York City, expands widely upon family recipes. In the anecdotal introduction, she describes Flemish food as "still deeply rooted in medieval cookery," with centuries-old reliance on such ingredients as nutmeg, saffron, almonds and dried fruits. Appetizers include vegetable dishes that, like Gratin of Belgian Endives, are rich in cheese; more than 20 hearty soup recipes are offered. Recipes featuring mussels, leeks and herring abound. Poultry and meat chapters focus on traditional favorites such as Waterzooi of Chicken ("a confusion of a soup with a stew," chock-full of herbs and vegetables) and meat loaf made with veal. Beer, used even in desserts, earns its own chapter, as does the much-loved potato ("traditionally Belgian fries were fried in the rendered fat of beef kidneys"). The chapter "Waffles and Pancakes" supplies the secret of real Belgian waffles (they are yeast-raised). With numerous sidebars throughout, on subjects from cafe life to quiche, Van Waerebeek evokes this homey, bourgeois cuisine with care and enthusiasm. Illustrations not seen by PW.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

When was the last time you saw a Belgian cookbook? Van Waerebeek, who grew up in Ghent and now teaches cooking in New York City, points out that much of the country's culinary tradition remains an oral one, passed down from generation to generation, and here she presents both her own recipes and those of her great-grandmother, grandmother, and mother. Belgian food is strongly linked to French cuisine, with German and Dutch influences, featuring fish and seafood, leeks, asparagus, cheese, and beer as the favorite ingredients?and don't forget the chocolate. Recipes include both homey, hearty dishes and more sophisticated fare, from Cod with Mustard and Gingered Carrots to Chocolate Chestnut Truffle Mousse. An essential purchase.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Truely Beautiful Belgium Cookbook!!! Aug. 30 2006
I'm from Belgium but living in Canada. I was raised very much with the traditional foods. My mother had passed them on to my sister and myself orally as they were passed to her from my grandmother. When I came across this book I found recipes that had become blurred. I loved it from the first read page. When I showed to my mother, she fell in love with it too!!! I ended up buying 3 copies, one for myself, my mother and a dear british "aunt". Although our background is Walloon or French speaking, the recipes are wonderful. I await the author's walloon version of belgian recipes with great anticipation!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everybody really DOES eat well in Belgium June 11 2003
By kristen
I married into a Belgian family, and I have to say, I was intimidated by my mother-in-law's wonderful cooking. How would I ever measure up? In fifteen years, I've learned quite a few of her recipes, but after reading this book, I finally understand where she's coming from. Ruth Van Waerbeek not only introduces Belgian food and cooking, but an entire way of life. The recipes are great, and the stories and anecdotes are even better. This is one of those cookbooks you can sit and read cover-to-cover, even when you're not looking for a recipe. I'm ordering one for my mother-in-law --she'll love it!
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5.0 out of 5 stars The best Cookbook I've Ever Used Feb. 9 1999
By A Customer
My father always said that Belgian cooking is the best in the world. After a trip to Brussels, in which I was absolutely overwhelmed by the wonderful flavors of every meal I ate, I would have to agree with him. Belgian cuisine has its basis in medieval cooking, and favors such combinations as fruit with meat, and beer used to cook virtually anything. This cookbook is full of surprising and delicious food combinations, and these hearty recipes are wonderfully easy to make! Flemish Style Braised Endive is now one of my favorite things on earth to eat. Another big favorite in our household is Chicken with Grapes. The flavor combinations are fabulous.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book I 'v borrowed and would love to own Nov. 3 2004
By A Customer
I am from Belgium, I borrowed this cook book from a friend and I was amazed by by all these wonderful recipes that my mother used to cook. I am desperately trying to find a hard cover copy but so far no luck.
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Five years ago, I had never heard of Belgian cuisine, but meeting my boyfriend certainly changed all of that! I was in AWE of how much reverence they paid to a single meal, but once I tasted the results, I understood what all the fuss was about.
I just couldn't afford the airfare to keep eating at Belgian restaurants, so this cookbook was a godsend! Many traditional recipes can be found in here, and they're much simpler to prepare than I had ever anticipated.
Do yourself a favor and get this in the hardcover version. If you use it as much as I do, a paperback copy will fall apart in about a month!
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5.0 out of 5 stars If you love Belgium, you will love this cookbook Nov. 21 1997
I am trying these recipes one by one and they are excellent so far and I am no great cook. The sidebars are full of interesting tidbits and I am
planning my garden around ingredients needed
in these recipes. Anyone who has been to Belgium knows they have the best beer in the world. The people are lovely, their country is gorgeous, their food superb and their beer un-beatable.
This is my very favorite cookbook. I only hope I can learn to grow Belgian endive and white asparagus.
If you don't love this cookbook, you don't love food. It is a treasure!
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How many times did I impress foreigners with the great belgian recipes which my grandma did not teach me?? All thanks to Ruth's book. Essential, healthy, tasty and authentic recipes which as a belgian native (now expatriate) I love to stir up for pleasure and for the good memories they bring back!!
Ruth is really special, cooking is a genuine passion for her. Having had the chance to know her personally and enjoy her cooking, I testify that she is a real master in cooking, not just belgian cooking...!)
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Intro to Belgium's Great Cuisine Jan. 3 1998
By A Customer
I love that subtitle: "The Crispiest Fried Potatoes, Moistest Roast Chicken, Plumpest Garlicky Mussels, and Heartiest Beers". If your mouth's watering, wait till you tear into this one. A great book, much loved by a small cult following (though I believe it's selling well to the mainstream, as well). Belgium is not the sleepy sister of France; it's a chowhound mecca, and this will make you fall in love with it.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars cooking like in the old country
I have been truly amazed at the authenticity of this Belgian cookbook. Having been raised in Belgium, I was pleasantly surprized to see so many familiar recipes. Read more
Published on Nov. 25 2001 by Amazon Customer
3.0 out of 5 stars YES PLEASE!
Really nice cookbook, great recipies, very authentic! Focuses on mainly Flemish recipies rather than those from the French and German speaking parts of Belgium. Read more
Published on May 14 2001 by Noel Molloy
5.0 out of 5 stars WOW -
You don't have to be Belgian to love this cookbook! It's truly awesome! All the recipes I've tried so far are great - and very easy to follow. Read more
Published on May 18 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars The essential Belgian cookbook in English
This is THE best book in English on Belgian cuisine. People who have visited Belgium, love it's typical dishes: Belgian endives, aspargus, waffles, "Waterzooi", mussels,... Read more
Published on May 7 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars Every Recipe Works
I have tried almost every recipie in this book and they are all excellent. Not one failure ! Very practical, easy and with history. Read more
Published on April 23 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars Sometimes it's good to be Belgian
This is a great book ! Makes me feel good about being Belgian... (and hungry)
There is a wave of interest in Belgian cooking, especially in the UK. Read more
Published on April 21 2000 by Kurt Decoene
5.0 out of 5 stars The Only Belgian Cookbook You Need
This is the most well-rounded single Belgian cookbook on Earth. The author explains everything so it's easy to understand and offers background information on the recipes and her... Read more
Published on Dec 28 1999 by Lee C. Carpenter
5.0 out of 5 stars Vive La Belgique!
I acquired my love of cooking and fine food while living in Belgium, and this book has every single receipe I enjoyed while in Liege. Read more
Published on April 22 1999
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