Je suis une gourmande.
Breakfast: Fresh baguette smothered in President butter and Marmite
Lunch: Escalope and tagliatelle
Dinner: Moules frites
The decision to live in Ixelles, Brussels is proving to be a fabulous one; with fantastic cafes, bars, delis and restaurants surrounding us – all of which feed my foodie fantasies. With my newfound culinary skills, I am exploring the local delis, markets and supermarkets in the hunt for the recipe’s required ingredients. Searching for the Tabasco Chipotle sauce in Waitrose or horseradish in Tesco can sometimes be as difficult as finding Where’s Wally. Imagine trying to find it here; where the label is in both French and Dutch. Downloading the Google Translate App for this purpose alone was genius; well it was, but first I had to wait for the Belgian SIM card to be delivered, wait for the phone to be unlocked and download the App. So before then, it was just my weak translation skills and I. Which is how I ended up with three different cartons of cream last week; I could not differentiate the single cream from the double cream. I had hoped the translation would be an easy one.
When I first visited James in Vienna, I decided that I was going to cook for him. I took myself to the local Spar and perused the shelves. I decided to make the not too ambitious ‘Chicken & Salad’. Hmm. Chicken? Upon finding the meat fridge I was disappointed to discover that they only had Ostrich in stock. It struck me as strange meat to sell in the local supermarket. Ignoring that thought, I concluded that as I barely knew how to cook Chicken, perhaps Ostrich was a little ambitious. Thus, I opted for well-known ingredients for pesto pasta instead.
“Ostrich?” James asked.
“Was it spelt Ö-S-T-E-R-R-E-I-C-H?” He followed.
“Yeh, that means Austria, the meat was from Austria, it was not Ostrich!”