Cookie Butter Recipe

Cookie butter platter

If you’ve ever wanted to taste a spoonful of creamy, decadent, drool-causing heaven, try cookie butter. I’m not kidding, I think cookie butter is the single best invention that human-kind has ever created. And it’s all thanks to Belgium! 

If cookie butter is one of my favorite inventions of all time, it should come as no surprise that it’s also my favorite topping for Belgian waffles…. Spread a spoonful of this on my recipe for liege waffles, and holy moly, you have some heaven.

horizontal cookie butter spread

What is Cookie Butter? 

Okay, fair question. Cookie butter is kind of like peanut butter in a way, except that its made with… you guessed it… cookies! 

Typical jarred cookie butter is made by grinding speculoos cookies into a peanut butter-like consistency. It has the flavors of a biscoff cookie, and a granier texture than peanut butter. It’s sweet and oooh so yummy. 

My recipe isn’t made with speculoos cookies, but you could make it that way if you want. Instead, I used leftover homemade cookies from some batches of recipe testing that I did! 

What is in this Recipe? 

Cumbs from hard, crispy cookies (can use store bought or just stale cookies)
Heavy cream 
Vanilla
Melted butter
Brown sugar

For full ingredient measurements and instructions, visit the recipe card at the bottom of the page. 

close up of cookie butter recipe

How Do I Make Cookie Butter?

Pulse 8 oz of cookie crumbs in food processor or blender until VERY fine. 

Add cream, vanilla, butter, and brown sugar. Blend until you reach peanut butter consistency. 

Add in one more ounce of crispy cookie crumbs to give the butter a firmer texture. 

What Cookies Should I Use? 

I used the leftover cookies that I had from recipe testing my Fast and Easy Maple Cookies, so homemade cookies are always an option if you’d like. I left my cookies out on the counter for two days to get stale before using them for this cookie butter. 

Homemade cookies resulted in a creamier butter, but if you use store bought cookies, such as Oreos, Biscoff, or Chips Ahoy, your cookie butter will be grittier. 

What Can Cookie Butter Be Used For? 

Plenty of things! My favorite way to use cookie butter is as a dip… I love it with bananas, pretzels, crackers, carrots, or anything else. You can also use cookie butter as a topping for things like waffles or pancakes. If you’re feeling really adventurous, you can even bake it into brownies!

Can I Eat Cookie Butter Raw? 

Yes, absolutely! Cookie butter is made to be eaten right out of the jar. It is made by grinding fully cooked cookies into crumbs and then adding cream, etc. There is no risk to eating cookie butter raw.

Thanks for reading everyone! If you liked this recipe, you’ll also like:

cookie butter pinterest image

Cookie Butter

Course Appetizer, Dessert, dip, spreads
Cuisine Belgium
Prep Time 15 minutes
Servings 1 cup

Ingredients

  • 9 oz of crumbs from hard crispy cookies (can use store bought, hard cookies or just stale, homemade cookies).
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp melted butter
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar

Instructions

  1. Pulse 8 oz of cookie crumbs in food processor or blender until VERY fine.
  2. Add ¼ cup of cream, vanilla, butter, and brown sugar. Blend until peanut butter consistency is reached.
  3. Add in one more ounce of crispy cookie crumbs to give the butter a firmer texture

Recipe Notes

Recipe copyright The Foreign Fork. For educational or personal use only.

At Home Date Night Ideas: An Evening in “Belgium”

At Home Date Night Ideas are hard to come up with. We all know we want more at home date night ideas, but are there really ways to be more creative than just watching a movie? Don’t worry, I have some AWESOME at home date night ideas lined up for you, inspired by countries all over the world. Fasten your seatbelts, people: you and your partner are about to travel the world from your living room.

Young, In Love, and Dreaming of Travel

When you and your partner were falling in love, how often did you daydream of visiting exotic, romantic places together? How often did you want to run away together, living a life of excitement and love and just forgetting about all of the mundane, everyday life tasks? How often did you dream of traveling to the Tuscan countryside or New York City and experiencing the beauty that life has to offer with your favorite person by your side?

C’mon, there can’t be a single person out there that hasn’t envisioned a night under the lights of the Eiffel Tower, dreamt about enjoying pasta in a quaint restaurant in Italy, or wished for an evening alone under the Aurora Borealis in Iceland. 

Unfortunately, sometimes life can get in the way…. Between full-time jobs, rent bills needing to be paid, bringing new children into the world, or literally anything else, travel dreams can fall to the wayside. As much as we want it, sometimes it’s just too hard to experience everything in the world that you want to experience.

And not only does every day life get in the way of traveling, but often times, these life-factors, can even diminish your ability to have a simple at home date night! 

The Importance of Good At Home Date Night Ideas

Date nights are so important to a relationship. Whether you’re going out to dinner, doing a fun activity out, or even just staying in to watch a movie, quality time together is vital. It’s what keeps a relationship exciting and interesting and fresh. Or maybe you just use them as a couple of hours to get away from the kids. Whatever you use date night for, you’ve gotta admit… it’s important! 

So, here we are: You can’t travel as much as you want with your partner. Your dreams of travel have fallen to the wayside… sometimes, that’s just life. Not only that, you’re busy and your partner is busy, and you both want to make time for each other but you can’t figure out something fun and inexpensive to do. 

It looks like maybe it’s time for a fun Date Night At Home… from “Belgium”!

Introducing: At Home Date Night Ideas from Around the World

Wait, what exactly do I mean? Well, if life is coming too fast and you can’t agree on something fun to do together… if you can’t afford to go out to a fancy meal… if you can’t explore exotic lands together like you want… my goal is to bring those places to YOU. 

Introducing: The Foreign Fork At Home Date Night Ideas from Around the World. Every couple of weeks I am going to compile some quick and easy ideas for you to experience the excitement of another country from the comfort of your living room. 

Foreign Fork “At Home Date Night Ideas” Posts Will Include:

These posts will feature a fun dish from the country (to cook together), a dessert to enjoy together, some music from the country to listen to while you cook, a movie from/about the country to watch together, and an activity that you can participate in that is popular in the country. 

Maybe I’m a geek, but I think it sounds like fun! 

So, without further ado, are you ready?

Okay, let’s start with Belgium. 

Belgian frites with andalouse sauce

What to Make for Dinner: Mussels and French Fries (Yes, really) 

Moules and Belgian Frites. Moules et Frites (Mussels and Fries)  from Belgium are a hugely popular mealtime combination. I know it sounds weird to serve something so fancy with french fries, but hey, that’s how they do it in Belgium. And honestly, I will never argue with an excuse to eat fries with ANYTHING. 

Luckily for you, both of these are really easy to make, and you don’t need any special tools or crazy spices to make them. You can taste one of the most widely enjoyed meals in Belgium from the comfort of your own kitchen. 

I was also going to recommend roasting Brussels sprouts as another side for dinner but… who knows… those cruciferous vegetables might not be the best thing for a romantic date night. Pee-yew. 

Click here for the recipe for Mussels Steamed in Wine and Cream from Belgium and here for the recipe for Fries (Frites) and Andalouse Sauce from Belgium.

What to Eat for Dessert: Belgian Chocolate or Biscoff Cookies

I have a couple of options for dessert for you. So, of course, Belgian chocolate is one of the very best desserts from Belgium. The chocolate is creamy and fresh and filled with so many different, fun fillings. 

You can find and order true Belgian chocolate off of Amazon and have it shipped right to your house! This is perfect for a romantic after-dinner treat. I mean, there’s a reason that chocolates are the most popular gift on Valentines Day, people… Chocolate brings out all the love in the world. 

Unfortunately, some of the Belgian chocolate available for order can get REALLY pricey. If you’re working on a budget and need something that’s a little more wallet-conscious, try enjoying Biscoff Cookies. 

Biscoff cookies are one of my favorite Belgian treats. They put those cookies on everything! Biscoff cookies can be found in most grocery stores… I find mine in the bakery section of Kroger. They’re thin, crunchy cookies that have a delicious cinnamon-y taste. They’re not the most elaborate or impressive of desserts, but they sure do taste yummy, and they definitely represent an evening in Belgium.  

What to Drink: Beer

As you may recall from my YouTube video about Belgium, beer is a big deal in the country. Belgium actually boasts 1100 variants of beer , but their most popular is lambic. Lambic is a naturally fermenting beer that the Belgians leave in open barrels overnight and let the natural yeasts ferment the beer. 

Look for any Belgian beers that are sold in America. This can include Big Bison Ale, Russian River Damnation, Jolly Pumpkin Bam Biere or more. 

And hey, if you don’t feel like searching all over for a Belgian beer, ANY beer will do. I’ve never known a Belgian to stick their nose up at someone that’s just trying to enjoy a good beer. 

Listen to: Jacques Brel

If you want something to listen to while you are cooking or eating, I would highly recommend looking up Jacques Brel on Spotify or even listen to this Jacques Brel playlist on YouTube. Of course, he sings in a different language… but that French is romantic as heck.

Jacques Brel is one of the most famous French-speaking musicians in Europe, and he was born in Belgium! In fact, there is a statue of Brel singing in Brussels, Belgium. 

Photo of a Bruges Street to represent In Bruges, the movie to watch during your At Home Date Night

What to Watch: In Bruge

I did some hard core investigations before writing this article, and, by far, the internet’s favorite movie about Belgium is In Bruges. In Bruge is a movie about two men that commit a murder for money. In order to avoid getting caught, they must lay low in Bruges, Belgium for two weeks. This is a comedic movie that is set in one of my very favorite places in Belgium, so I would highly recommend it! 

One of the characters absolutely HATES Belgium, and the other loves it, so you will get to see Belgium from two completely different points of view. The movie also points out some of the most popular aspects of Belgium, including the vial of Jesus Christ’s blood that allegedly resides in The Basilica of the Holy Blood in Bruges. This movie shows you the highlights of a trip to Belgium! Plus, it will make you laugh. 

I would, though, give a fair warning that this movie is rated R because there is quite a bit of swearing. If that makes you uncomfortable, this might not be the movie for you. 

Luckily, In Bruges is available for rent on Amazon for $3! 

Dart board, a popular game in Belgium. A game to play during your At Home date Night

What to Play: Darts 

If the night isn’t over and you’re still looking for one more thing to do, try striking up a game of darts! In Belgium, the game is called Vogelpik and was very popular in Flanders around 1972. 

The original game included a stuffed bird hanging from a wire on the ceiling with a needle in its mouth. The player’s goal was to swing the bird and try to spear a wooden board on the opposite wall. 

These days, most Belgians just play darts. So, if you want to enjoy a Belgian style game, darts is the way to go!

Well, that’s it my friends. A night in Belgium without ever needing to leave your home. Was I able to help you find a fun way to enjoy each others’ company? I hope so! If you want to learn more about Belgium, don’t forget to check out my post about the Background and Food Culture of Belgium.

I’d love to make more At Date Nights Ideas from Around the World. What country would you want to see next? Let me know in the comments and I will put it on my list! Thanks for stopping by, friends. I will see you soon. 

Stoemp: Creamy, Vegetable- Stuffed Mashed Potatoes from Belgium

Stoemp from Belgium

Stoemp from Belgium is the epitome of the perfect comfort food. Mashed potatoes are mixed with cream and sauteed vegetables and eaten to experience the taste of a homey and comforting dish.

Remember those awesome fries that we had from Belgium earlier…? Yeah, those were awesome. Luckily for you, we have another potato recipe from Belgium ready to bless your kitchen…. This Stoemp is the peeeerfect comfort food. Bad day at work? Stoemp will fix it. Feeling under the weather? Stoemp will fix it. Going through a breakup? Stoemp will fix it. There’s nothing that this recipe can’t fix. Challenge me on this, I dare you.

Personalizing Your Stoemp

Okay but really, the thing that makes this stoemp so delicious is the cream and vegetables mixed in… The nutmeg in the cream creates a really homey, nutty, comforting flavor. And the vegetables add an element that cannot be beat.

Really, you can choose to add any vegetables to your stoemp, depending on what you have available. If you don’t like a vegetable in the recipe, feel free to remove it and replace it with something that you enjoy more!

Stoemp

Cleaning the Leeks

If you’re choosing to put leeks in your stoemp, take extra care when working with them. Cut the leafy parts off of the leeks and then use a knife to cut the stem into small rings. Put these rings into a strainer and rinse them in the sink. Leeks often hide dirt between their extra rings, so you must rinse between the rings to remove all of the dirt. Then before you add the vegetables back into the mashed potatoes, make sure to squeeze them dry with a paper towel.

Stoemp was one Belgian recipe that I didn’t try while I was visiting in Belgium, but I wish I did! I can only imagine how delicious this recipe would taste made traditionally in Belgium. I did, though, bring you the most authentic recipe possible and I can’t wait for you to try it!

Did you like this stoemp side dish from Belgium? Leave a comment on my blog post to let me know! You can also post a photo on instagram or facebook with the hashtag #TheForeignFork or tag @TheForeignFork. If you liked this recipe, be sure to check out my recipe for Jeera Aloo potatoes from Bangladesh or Potato Pancakes (Draniki) from Belarus.


Stoemp or Creamy, Vegetable-Filled Mashed Potatoes (Belgium)

Stoemp from Belgium is the epitome of the perfect comfort food. Mashed potatoes are mixed with cream and sauteed vegetables and eaten to experience the taste of a homey and comforting dish. 

Course Side Dish
Cuisine Belgium
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds idaho potatoes about 5 potatoes
  • 2 carrots peeled and chopped
  • 10 oz Brussels sprouts
  • 1 ½ leeks washed and cut into rings
  • 6 slices bacon
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 ⅓ cup heavy cream
  • 4 tbsp butter

Instructions

  1. Peel and cube the potatoes. In a large pot, boil the potatoes. When tender, drain and mash.
  2. In a separate pan, cook bacon.

  3. Cut the leaves off of the leeks and work with the thick part at the bottom. Cut and prepare all vegetables. In a large pot, melt the butter and add the vegetables. Saute for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add stock, cream, nutmeg, salt and pepper.
  5. Bring to a boil. When vegetables are cooked, strain liquid out of vegetables and reserve. Add the vegetables into the potatoes. I added about ¾ of the vegetable mixture and it was enough, but feel free to add as much or as little as you’d like. Also crumble and add the bacon.

  6. Add reserved liquid back into the pan. Reheat to a low boil and cook the sauce, stirring continuously, until the sauce reduces and becomes thicker.

  7. Once sauce is ready, add into the potatoes and mix to combine again. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Recipe copyright The Foreign Fork. For personal or educational use only. 

The Most Delicious Liege Waffles from Belgium

Beligan Waffles with oreos

Liege waffles are a delicious and indulgent treat from Belgium. Unlike anything you’ve ever had before, these waffles are made with pearl sugar and yeast to create a sweet and crunchy crust, and taste more like dessert than breakfast. They are perfect to enjoy any time of day!

Is there anything more iconic than waffles from Belgium?

Let me answer that for you… there’s not. Belgian waffles are everything I dream of in life. If I lived in an NBC sitcom about the parks and recreation division of a fictional town in Indiana called Pawnee (ahem…. Parks and Rec), my name would be Leslie Knope, because I, too, believe that there is no better treat in the world than a good waffle. Especially one with strawberries and syrup… mmmmm… sorry, I think I just drooled a little. Okay, back to the blog post.

So in America, we eat waffles. We call them Belgium waffles, but truthfully, they’re not real. They’re not true, real, wonderful Belgian waffles.

Waffles here in America are the bombdiggity, don’t get me wrong. But the Liege waffles in Belgium are on a whole other level. Nothing can compare. Seriously, nothing. Just try them for yourself and you’ll be a believer.

five liege waffles with toppings

Brussels Waffles VS. Liege Waffles

There are two types of waffles in Belgium. The first is a Brussels waffle, and this is more comparable to what we eat in America. Brussels waffles are a perfect square and they’re a little lighter in texture. You can find these waffles in every other storefront window in all of Belgium. Normally they’re topped with more goodies than your brain can imagine: Nutella, strawberries, speculoos, cookie butter, peanut butter, Oreos… you name it, and it’s makin’ you drool.

The second option are liege waffles. Now the liege waffles are a little different from the Brussels waffles. They’re made with yeast, are a lot denser than the Brussels waffle, and the shape of them is very irregular. The main difference, though, is the secret ingredient of Liege waffles: Belgian Pearl Sugar.

Belgian pearl sugar is little chunks of sugar that look a little bit like pebbles. This Pearl Sugar mixes into the waffle batter towards the very end of the dough’s rising phase. When you put the batter on the waffle maker, this sugar will caramelize and form a spectacularly sweet and crunchy crust around the waffle. This crust, I swear, makes all the difference in the world.

Liege waffles with sweet toppings

What Ingredients You’ll Need to Make Liege Waffles

  • All-purpose flour
  • Large eggs – beaten individually to create the fluffiest waffles
  • Active dry yeast
  • Butter – melted
  • Full fat milk – lukewarm
  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Vanilla extract
  • Belgian pearl sugar – you can use crushed sugar cubes as a substitute
Plain waffles

So What Toppings Can I Put on My Waffles?

Well, it’s a free country, so technically, you can put whatever toppings you want on your waffle. Is this what I would recommend for you, though? Absolutely not.

Listen, I’m a toppings kinda gal. The more cookie dough and peanut butter sauce my ice cream has, the better. When I got to Belgium, I had the same mindset. I wanted every ounce of delicious toppings that my poor liege waffle could support. Every day that I had a Liege waffle (which was every day that I was in Belgium) I tried a different combination of spectacular toppings.

But then I read a blog article from a girl who had studied in Belgium. She said that her very favorite waffles to eat in Belgium were the… plain ones? What?!??! What blasphemy was this??? Not even SYRUP!? Well, I decided to listen to crazy chick, and… she was right. The plain liege waffle really is the best that the world has to offer. Eating the waffle plain means that I can really taste the buttery, sugary goodness in every bite.

Either plain or loaded with fresh fruit, sweet sauces, nut butter, Nutella, chocolate chips or any other delight your mind can come up with, I’m convinced there are no wrong ways to enjoy these waffles.

sweet belgian waffles with toppings

Tips for Making the Perfect Liege Waffles

I have a few pieces of advice for you on this front…

  1. Make sure to rise the dough in a glass bowl. I didn’t really think that this made a difference until I tried to rise my dough in a plastic bowl one time and it didn’t rise a centimeter in two hours…. glass bowls all the way.
  2. If you can’t find/don’t want to buy Belgian Pearl Sugar, you can also use crushed up sugar cubes in your waffles instead.
  3. Keep your waffle iron between about 400 and 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Any less and the pearl sugar won’t caramelize around the waffle. Any more and the sugar will burn before you can get it off the iron.

You need to try these, you guys… and ASAP. Let me know how they taste! If you liked these, you should also try my recipe for Kaiserschmarrn from Austria and Bakes from Barbados.

Liege Waffles

Liege waffles are a delicious and indulgent treat from Belgium. Unlike anything you've ever had before, these waffles are made with pearl sugar and yeast to create a sweet and crunchy crust, and taste more like dessert than breakfast – and are perfect to enjoy any time of day!

Course Breakfast, brunch, Dessert
Cuisine Belgium
Keyword liege waffles, waffles
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
resting time 2 hours
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 10 waffles

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 large eggs beaten individually
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter melted
  • 1/3 cup lukewarm full fat milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tbsp refined sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup Belgian pearl sugar you can also used crushed sugar cubes if you do not have pearl sugar

Instructions

  1. Heat milk in the microwave until lukewarm but not hot. Add the yeast in, and then add 1 ½ tbsp sugar. Let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes.
  2. In a separate bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer) combine remaining 2.5 tbsp sugar with flour and salt.

  3. Use your fingers to make a well in the middle and pour in the yeast mixture. Mix lightly for about a minute and a half.
  4. Add each beaten egg into the dough and mix for about one minute each before adding the next one.
  5. Add the vanilla and the butter, and mix until fully combined, about 3-4 minutes. The dough will seem too buttery, but it’s alright!
  6. Spray a separate bowl (preferably glass) with nonstick spray and transfer the dough. Cover the bowl with aluminum foil and leave to rise for two hours.
  7. When the dough is done rising, punch it down and knead in the Belgian Pearl Sugar. Allow dough to rest for 15 minutes before cooking it.
  8. Heat a waffle iron up to 350 degrees. Spray with nonstick spray between each waffle. Cook each waffle for about five minutes or until browned to your liking. Top with peanut butter, Nutella, fruit, whipped cream, or crumbled cookies. Or enjoy your liege waffle plain (that way is my favorite!)

Recipe Notes

  • Leftover waffles can be kept in the fridge for up to 3-4 days, or the freezer for up to 4 months, if wrapped tightly in plastic wrap or put in an airtight container.

 

Let me know in the comments if you give this recipe a try!

 

Recipe copyright The Foreign Fork. For educational or personal use only. 

Did you like this Liege Waffles recipe? Post a photo of your creation on Facebook or Instagram and tag @TheForeignFork or hashtag #TheForeignFork.

Don’t forget to come back each week for more recipes from around the world!

Looking for More Deliciously Sweet Recipes?

Fries (Frites) and Andalouse Sauce from Belgium

Belgian Fries (Frites)

Belgian Fries (or Frites, as they’re called in Belgium) are unlike any fries you’ve ever tasted. Soft on the inside, impossibly crispy on the outside, and so crunchy you can hear each bite from across the room. There’s a secret to making fries this delicious, and if you keep reading, I’ll tell you what it is.

Ah, fries, a universal love. I think that God gave us a gift when he gave us fries. Matchstick, curly, steak, crinkle cut… there’s not a single kind that I don’t love. But I’m gonna let you in on a little secret…

These fries… these Belgian frites that I’m going to share with you right now…. These fries are life changing, earth shattering, scream-at-the-top-of-your-lungs-“I LOVE THESE FRIES” fries. And I promise I don’t say this lightly.

The Invention of Fries

So, back in the 1600s, Belgians ate a lot of fish, and one of their favorite ways to cook up their fish was to fry them in oil! Sometimes in the winter, though, the ice on the water was too thick and the Belgians couldn’t reach their beloved fish. Instead, they began cutting up potatoes into thin slices and frying them up as they would fish. And thus, the favorite food of drunk Americans was born.

But Wait… I Thought that Fries Were From France?

Ah yes, my reader; so did I. Then I took a walking tour and I learned the truth. Those French lads have been taking credit for a Belgian invention for far too long!! It’s time to set the record straight, and I’m here to help.

If you’ll remember correctly from my Belgian introduction, the country of Belgium has three official languages: German, Dutch, and French.

During World War 1, some of the war was fought in a French-speaking portion of Belgium. The American soldiers were sent to Belgium to fight, and while they were there, they received some wonderful fries from the Belgian soldiers. The Americans, however, heard the Belgians speaking French, and thus, thought that they were French men.

When the Americans returned home, they spread the word of the incredible food that they had tried overseas… Fried potatoes from France. Sorry, Belgians. We messed that one up big time.

Alexandria with large statue of Frites
Peep those crazy socks

What Makes These So Good?

I don’t know about you, but I like my fries CRISPY. The best ones in basket for me are the small ones that got a little crispier in the frier than the rest of their fry buddies. McDonald’s fries just don’t cut it for me, mostly because they just seem soggy…. I ain’t about that lyfe, yanno?

So those wonderful, smart, fantastic Belgians came up with the recipe for the crispiest, crunchiest, tastiest fries out there. Are you ready for the secret?

Double frying.

Yep! So you don’t just fry those bad guys up once. Fry them twice! Two times the frying and 80000000 times the taste.

The first time that you fry the potatoes, keep the oil at about 325 degrees fahrenheit. This initial frying will cook the potatoes all the way through and make sure that the interior is nice and soft. Once you remove the fries from the oil, let them rest for a bit. They’ll need about a half an hour in between so that they can completely cool down and prepare for their next batch of frying.

When you fry them the second time, raise the temperature of the oil to 375 degrees. You’ll keep them in the oil for about 2-4 minutes, depending on how dark you like your fries. This second round of frying simply crisps up the outside of the potatoes and leaves us with a deliciously crunchy treat.

Fries with Andalouse Dipping Sauce

Choosing a Sauce

Okay, so the crispy factor of these fries is off the chain, but Belgian frites are fun for more reasons than one. For starters, the way that they’re served! Forget the days of a simple choice between ketchup or ranch for your fries (oops, sorry… is my midwestern showing?). In Belgium, the dipping-sauce game is OFF THE CHARTS. I swear, you can choose between 10, 15, 20 different kinds of sauces at one fry stand, and the sauce is just as much a part of the experience as the fries themselves.

The possibilities are endless, but some of the more common options are:

  • Ketchup
  • Mayonnaise
  • Green goddess sauce
  • Aiolis
  • Pili-pili sauce
  • Brasil sauce
  • Andalouse sauce.

The Andalouse sauce that I made with these fries is a true Belgian specialty. Based with mayonnaise and flavored with tomato paste, pepper, onions, and some seasonings, it is a perfect way to truly channel your inner Belgian.

Serving your Belgian Fries

If you want to serve up your fry treat like a true Belgian, make a paper cone out of newspaper (or, in my case, construction paper) and put the fries in the cone. Then take a big spoonful of your Andalouse sauce and plop it right on top of those fries. If you really want to act the part, get a teeny tiny little plastic fork and use that to eat those sauce-covered fries. Or just stick your face in the cone and gobble ‘em all up. No judgement here, dudes.

Okay, I think I have effectively shared every piece of Belgian Fries knowledge that is in my brain. If I missed something, if you still have questions, leave a comment! If you try the recipe and love it, tag a photo of your fries on Instagram or Facebook at @TheForeignFork or with the hashtag #TheForeignFork. Thanks for stopping by everyone! Come back next week for an adventure into Belgian Stoemp and Liege waffles!


Fries (Frites) with Andalouse Sauce (Belgium)

Course Side Dish
Cuisine Belgium
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Resting time 30 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 5 idaho potatoes
  • 1 container sunflower oil for deep frying
  • Sea salt
  • Paper to make serving cones

Andalouse Dip:

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp green bell pepper
  • 1 tbsp red bell pepper
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp onions finely chopped

Instructions

For the Fries:

  1. Peel potatoes and cut into fry shapes (about ½ inch thick and 4 inches long).
  2. Fill a bowl with water and add the raw potatoes. Let sit for a few minutes until the water becomes cloudy, empty the bowl, refill with fresh water, and put the raw potato fries back in. Continue until the water remains clear.

  3. In a large pot, heat oil to 325 degrees. Add the potatoes (about ¼ at a time) and fry for about 4-5 minutes.
  4. Remove from the oil and let drain on paper towel. Ensure that oil comes back to 325 degrees before adding your next round of fries.
  5. Allow the potatoes to cool completely– for at least a half an hour. When the potatoes are completely cooled, reheat the oil to 375 degrees.
  6. Sprinkle salt on the potatoes. Put them in the oil again, this time frying to your liking (about 3-6 minutes).
  7. Remove, drain, salt again, and serve immediately with andalouse sauce.

For the Andalouse Sauce:

  1. Mix all and let sit for one hour or overnight.

Recipe Notes

Recipe copyright The Foreign Fork. For educational and personal use only. 

Mussels Steamed in Wine and Cream from Belgium

Belgian Mussels Vertical

Mussels are a delectable favorite in Belgian cuisine. These mussels are steamed in a mixture of wine and cream that gives them an incredible flavor. If you want an easy recipe that will make you look like a master chef, this mussel recipe is the way to go!

I feel like such a socialite when I eat mussels… is that weird? When I’m out to dinner, and a big steaming pot of mussels shows up at the table (plus an extra bowl for shells), I suddenly feel the need to get all gossipy and giggly with my gal friends. There’s nothing like hearing the click of empty shells in a side bowl while discussing the drama of ex-boyfriends and your latest hair fad.  Mussels make me even more extroverted than I already am. A big pot of yummy to share amongst friends… who wouldn’t feel more social after that?

Well, let me tell you: The Belgians definitely agree with the Alexandria-eating-mussels transformation. Mussels are a social food in Belgium, too, and it’s not uncommon to see a group of friends sitting at a table, enjoying a hot pot of mussels and fries (moules frites, as they say in French… which is what they speak in Belgium).

These steamed mussels are easy as pie to make and seriously so good. You need virtually no talent as a chef to pull this dish off, but a success will make you look like a cooking GOD to your friends. Seriously, though, if you want to look like the next Gordon Ramsey, make these for your next dinner party.

Belgian Mussels

Preparing the Mussels

Mussel Freshness

First of all, when cooking mussels (in the Northern hemisphere at least), follow the age old adage…. Only eat these delicacies in months with the letter R.

September, October, November, December, January, February, March, and April are all great months to enjoy mussels.

May, June, July, and August, on the other hand, may not produce the freshest product.

Checking for Good Mussels

The most important part about making mussels is that if the mussel shell is open, even a crack, you don’t want to eat it. When you first buy mussels, they’re always alive. If a mussel is dead before you begin cooking it, it is possible for you to get very sick. You want to make sure that you remove all dead mussels before you start the cooking process.

The Tap Test

When a mussel is alive, it tends to be shut up tight within its shell. The dead mussels will be open so that you can see the interior. If you see an open mussel shell, perform the tap test. Tap the mussel on the edge of the sink. If the shell closes up when you tap it, the mussel is alive. If you tap the shell and nothing happens, the mussel is dead, which means that you should throw the mussel away. Again, eating a dead mussel will make you sick, so take care to separate them accordingly.

Belgian Mussles

Cleaning the Mussels

Once you’ve separated the good from the bad, make sure to clean them well before cooking. Sometimes simply rinsing the mussels off doesn’t remove all of the unwanted dirt. Mussels can carry barnacles or sand, and you want to make sure that all of this is gone before you throw the shells in a pot.

In the sink, put all of the shells in a strainer. Have a large bowl off to the side. Take each mussel individually and scrub it clean with a scrub brush or, as Mama Foreign Fork used, a toothbrush. Depending on where you get your mussels, they may still have the “beard” on them. The “beard” is a line of hair that runs from the opening of the mussel. Simply pull on this lightly to remove it. Continue scrubbing each mussel with a stiff scrub brush until they are clean. They are now ready to eat!

Helpful video of how to clean mussels from MyKitchenTableVideo


Cooking the Mussels

This part is easy… just follow the instructions below! When I cooked mussels for the first time, I was concerned because the meat inside the shells appeared to be a beige color instead of the orange that I was accustomed to. As the mussels cook and touch the air, the colors will continue to deepen, so a few minutes after cooking, they may still be developing their orange color.

If, however, your mussels don’t ever turn orange, do not fear. The orange ones are female, whereas the pale ones are male! Both are perfectly safe to eat.

Belgian Mussels Vertical

Enjoying Your Meal

You have a couple of different options for how to enjoy your cooked mussels. My favorite way is with a nice, hearty piece of crusty bread. If you really want to enjoy your mussels the Belgian way, cook up some Belgian Frites to go with them! You can also just eat them straight from the pot… That’s the way I did it when I recipe tested, and it did NOT disappoint.

This recipe is a fantastic way to enjoy a top notch Belgian meal. And once all of your friends start calling you Mrs./Mr. Ramsey, I’m going to need a letter of gratitude, please and thank you….. or a comment on this post will suffice. If you liked this seafood recipe, also check out my recipe for my Caribbean Seafood Salad from Antigua and Barbuda or this Dopeaja with Shrimp from Bangladesh. Thanks for stopping by! I’ll see you on Sunday for some awesome Belgian Fries!

Mussels Steamed in Wine and Cream (Belgium)

Mussels are a delectable favorite in Belgian cuisine. These mussels are steamed in a mixture of wine and cream that gives them an incredible flavor. If you want an easy recipe that will make you look like a master chef, this mussel recipe is the way to go!

Course Main Course
Cuisine Belgian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 13 minutes
Total Time 23 minutes
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ lb fresh mussels cleaned
  • 1 handful parsley
  • 5 oz cream
  • 2 cup white wine
  • 4 shallots chopped
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • Lemon slices

Instructions

  1. Clean the mussels thoroughly (read above for more thorough instructions on how to do so).
  2. In a large pan, heat butter and cook shallots until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add white wine.
  3. Add mussels and cover with a lid.
  4. After about 3 minutes, remove the mussels from the liquid to a serving dish.
  5. Add cream and chopped parsley to the pan. Cook for a few minutes until the sauce thickens slightly.
  6. Pour hot sauce over the mussels and serve immediately with fresh, crusty bread or frites. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Recipe adapted from AtoZWorldTravel.com