EĂ©n van mijn favoriete plekjes in Londen is ongetwijfeld Borough Market.
Ik had al talloze bezoekjes aan Londen achter de rug vooraleer ik er geraakte, maar als foodie was ik meteen verkocht! Ik kan hier makkelijk een paar uur (of misschien zelfs een hele dag) rondlopen. Het aanbod is er immens groot en de vele stalletjes waar je iets kan kopen om te eten en te drinken, zijn echt wel mijn ding.
Waar ik als tiener ooit een bloedhekel aan had, is tegenwoordig mijn favoriete maaltijd van de dag: het ontbijt. In het verlengde van ontbijten, ligt brunchen, zo mogelijk nog meer mijn ding. Ik doe dan ook niets liever dan de nieuwste brunchplekjes ontdekken of dat nu in eigen land is of (ver) daarbuiten.
Iemand die ook niet vies is van een brunch meer of minder is Josefien. We spreken regelmatig ook eens in real life af om wat bij te praten en waar kan dat beter dan op een heerlijk brunchadresje?
Vorig weekend vond je ons dan ook terug bij FranzGustav in Gent waar we genoten van een overheerlijke brunch, we verloren zelfs de tijd helemaal uit het oog!
Vooraleer wij op reis vertrekken (of zelfs nog maar op daguitstap), snor ik altijd enkele leuke adresjes op om iets te eten of te drinken. Ja, ik beken: ik ben een bourgondiĂ«r en (lekker) eten maakt voor mij deel uit van de reiservaring.
Ik kan je zo een aantal gerechten geven waar ik de beste herinneringen aan heb en ze hangen bijna allemaal aan een bepaalde locatie vast.
Niet lang voor we vertrokken naar San Francisco had ik in een reisprogramma iets opgevangen over Cafe Zoetrope waarvan de eigenaar niemand minder dan Francis Ford Coppola is, de beroemde filmregisseur. Uiteraard wou ik wel Ă©Ă©n van hun bekende gerechten, de spaghetti & meatballs, proeven en op onze laatste avond trokken we dus naar dit restaurant.
De afgelopen maanden trokken diverse vrienden al richting Ă©Ă©n of ander ski-oord en daar zal ook de komende tijd niet veel aan veranderen. Wij hebben tot nu toe louter in de zomer de pracht van de bergen mogen ervaren, maar eens onze baby oud genoeg is, vertrekken we ongetwijfeld op skivakantie. We willen hem of haar het avontuur op de latten immers niet ontzeggen. Ikzelf kan me dan botvieren met het nemen van honderden foto’s.
Wat we ongetwijfeld ook zullen doen: lekker gaan eten. Ik hou van de keuken in de Alpen: de kazen, de charcuterie, het kan mij allemaal bekoren. Het zal jullie dan ook niet verwonderen dat Ă©Ă©n van mijn favoriete restaurants zich in Alpe-d’Huez bevindt: het restaurant van l’Altiport Ă l’Alpe-d’Huez. Zoals de naam al doet vermoeden: de chalet waar het restaurant in gevestigd is, ligt pal aan de luchthaven van Alpe-d’Huez.
We ontdekten dit adresje tijdens ons eerste reis naar Alpe-d’Huez, nu vijf jaar geleden. Ik at er zulke lekkere Sint-Jacobsvruchten dat ik nu nog steeds met heimwee aan dit gerecht moet terugdenken.
Tijdens onze meest recente trip naar het zonnige ski-oord stapelden de bezoekjes zich dan ook op. Deze keer probeerden we ook hun kaasfondue: overheerlijk. Zo heerlijk trouwens dat ik vergeten ben om er een foto van te nemen.
Naast het eten is ook het onthaal er ontzettend chaleureux, zoals de Fransen dat zo mooi kunnen zeggen (nog mensen met een voorliefde voor de Franse taal in de zaal?). Het is er elke keer opnieuw thuiskomen en ik zou mij op dit moment maar al te graag op hun zonnig terras zetten, graag met fijn gezelschap en een goed glas witte wijn. Zalig gewoon!
Voorlopig moeten jullie het dus wel stellen met zomerse foto’s van dit restaurant, maar ook in de winter zijn ze open. De winter is en blijft immers het hoogseizoen voor deze bestemming.
Wie richting Franse Alpen trekt, kan ik dit adresje alleen maar aanraden. Vergeet trouwens de gĂ©nĂ©pi aan het eind van de maaltijd niet: de lokale likeur kan mij altijd bekoren en zal je in de wintermaanden zeker kunnen opwarmen.
Vandaag is het 14 februari, voor de romantici onder ons beter bekend als Valentijn. Mijn man en ik zijn niet bepaald romantische zielen of misschien net wel, op onze eigen manier dan, maar dat is voor een andere keer. Wij zijn voor elkaar bekend als Kelly en Steven, dus hier geen “ge-schat” of weet ik veel wat, ik heb een hekel aan dergelijke koosnaampjes voor hem en haar.
Last Saturday I was invited by the kind people of Walkie Talkie and Danone to attend the launch of #myvitabreak.
During the month of November a group of bloggers, including me, will help in guiding you towards a more healthy lifestyle.
The goal to do this is by implementing a couple of life hacks into our daily routine, accompanied by a jar of Vitalinea Plus now and then (naturally).
Continue to learn all about this by clicking the link below!
If you’re part of the Belgian blogosphere you’ve probably noticed that #boostyourpositivity, the blogger initiative by Danone (Activia) and Walkie Talkie PR, is back for a second edition!
I couldn’t be happier about this, since I thoroughly enjoyed the previous edition where I got to know (and meet!) several wonderful people with whom I still stay in touch to date.
It’s lunch time and I’m talking breakfast. I guess that proves just how much I love breakfast. I have to admit though, I wasn’t a morning person when I was younger and I certainly didn’t have the appetite for breakfast. Nowadays I eat like a king (or queen, perhaps) in the morning and by dinner I turn into a peasant/prince (sorry, so not ready to give up on dinner yet!).
Anyway, I mainly catch up on reading blogs over the weekend and stumbled onto this post on Fieke’s blog about #kookboekweek.
Click through below to read what that is all about!
After spending last week reflecting on my 16 year-old self, I spent this week thinking about my take on energy and positivity, in particular getting both out of our daily dose of food.
As I’ve mentioned before, I changed my diet habits and am trying to eat well-balanced and healthy. So far, this has been really paying off. I lost about twenty-five pounds already and have no problem continuing this healthy lifestyle (which was always the hard part when I tried dieting in the past).
One of the big advantages are the blogs that offer recipes and healthy alternatives, but I’m also pretty good at inventing recipes myself so far. I’ve also been taking a couple of cooking lessons, organized by the organic food store I’ve been going to recently (its location, close to my office, is pretty convenient). Last week, I tried my hand at these delicious cereal bars, together with my friend CĂ©line (whom I’ve met on Twitter, no less).
I tell you: these are easy as pie and are so delicious!
5 cups of oats – 1 cup of sesame – 1 cup of sunflower seeds – 1 cup of coconut flakes – 1 cup of pumpkin seeds – 1 cup of almonds (roughly chopped) – 1 cup of oil (either sesame or sunflower oil will work) – 1 cup of rice syrup (I used 1/2 cup of rice syrup and 1/2 cup of agave syrup, but I think maple syrup would work equally well)
Preheat your oven to 150Â° Celcius.
Mix all ingredients, except for the syrup. Once all ingredients are mixed, add the syrup.
Put a sheet of baking paper on a baking plate and divide the mixture onto the plate.
Bake the crunch for about 15 minutes. Now this is the tricky part: bake the crunch for another 15 minutes, while keeping an eye on it every 5 minutes until it is golden brown and time to get it out of the oven.
At this point, the crunch will still be soft, so it’s best you divide the crunch into bars while it is still hot. Leave to cool completely.
See, I told you, easy as pie! Enjoy!
After counting down the days (really!), it was finally time to head to dinner at Bruges pop-up restaurant Yellow this past Saturday. And yes, you might remember Yellow from a previous post I dedicated to them. I gladly refer you to the latter in case you don’t know yet what the concept of Yellow is.
As my lunch date cancelled, I changed my reservations so as it turned out the husband and I headed out the house on a dinner date. Ever well-prepared as I am, I had studied the menu before, but changed my mind once we got there (on purpose and not so much on purpose). Since the scallop season is finished, no scallops on the menu – insert (really) sad face here – but they got replaced by another seasonal favorite of mine: asparagus.
I made the obvious (or perhaps ‘safe’) choices and opted for the flemish-style asparagus as the main course. For starters I got the sea kale, which is grown on the farm owned by the team behind Yellow. This is, by the way, the same farm that will house the renewed Hertog Jan this August. The husband had the grilled pointed pepper for starters followed by Wagyu beef.
The food was delicious, although I wasn’t blown away. This could have had something to do with the fact that we chose rather traditional dishes (but from what I can tell, the other dishes on the menu also carry a certain level of tradition). Another reason could be the price tag. I know.. I was served food by the team behind Hertog Jan, which still has three Michelin stars, but I didn’t have dinner at Hertog Jan, I had dinner at their bistro concept and experienced quite a rushed service (something I don’t like at all).
From what I’ve been told by friends and colleagues, they do share this opinion. We all agree that it was a wonderful experience, but the price tag might just keep us away from a second lunch or dinner at Yellow or the Hertog Jan bistro concept (due to open later this year), which will probably be very similar.
That said, if you don’t mind the price and want to experience some of the same dishes Hertog Jan has on the menu, I would certainly make my way to Yellow before they end their run in the centre of Bruges on May 31st.
Breakfast at Kelly’s doesn’t sound quite like it, so I guess today marks the one (and probably only) time I wish my name was Tiffany. Ah well..
A little while ago, the people behind Belgian company Alpro asked me if I was into becoming a kind of ambassador for their brand or better an Alpronista as they prefer to call it.
Now, you must know I have been using an array of their products for as long as I can remember. However, I wasn’t that familiar with their yoghurt products, so I was very happy to receive a package containing three flavors of their plant-based yoghurt (Mild & Creamy) with an abundance of toppings to go with it. The challenge was to discover my favorite combination in yoghurt and topping(s).
Of course, you all know by now that I suffer an extreme case of choice stress, so that hasn’t been really helpful thus far. I do prefer my yoghurt natural, as soon as it has a flavor it becomes a bit too sweet for breakfast. As for the toppings, as of today my favorites would be the chia and flax seeds, the pecans and pistachios and the mango. Oh, and I’d like to add a bit of chocolate now and then, too. Just a teaspoon, so it isn’t really cheating, right? Right?
I have been trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle for the last couple of months and Alpro Mild & Creamy really adds to that. I’m in the midst of a Weight Watchers program and was surprised to find out a bowl of 100g is only 1 pro-point (2 for the flavor variant). For me, that’s a really big plus as it’s not that easy to find a well-balanced breakfast that doesn’t include a truckload of carbs.
If you head over to the Alpro site, you can find out who the other Alpronistas are and learn about their favorite combinations. Next to that, you can also win your favorite topping kit.
I’m really curious about everyone’s combinations, so don’t hesitate to leave a comment and reveal yours!
I could’ve written about Coldplay’s Yellow here, but instead I’m going to write a little note about food. Not just any food, no.
This past Friday marked the opening night of Yellow Bistro & Bar. Set in a historic building in the centre of Belgian city Bruges, Yellow is a new restaurant concept curated by Gert De Mangeleer and Joachim Boudens of three Michelin starred restaurant Hertog Jan, formerly located in Bruges and re-opening later this year in Zedelgem (which happens to be my new hometown, by the way).
They aim at serving local products (De Mangeleer’s signature dishes) combined with surprising wine and beer combinations (as selected by Boudens).
Next to the bistro concept, there’s also a champagne bar courtesy of Veuve Clicquot. As a matter of fact, the name of the bistro and bar, Yellow, is a reference to the typical yellow colour of Maison Veuve Clicquot. There’s a selection of tapas available to accompany your drink, whether you’re having a drink before dinner or just unwinding with friends.
I had a sneak peek at the menu and have a date set with my friend already. If you’re feeling the yellow vibes as well, then do make your reservations before they close by the end of May.
28.02 – 31.05 (noon-3pm; 6-10pm)
for more information, visit www.yellowbrugge.be/en
During our latest visit to London, we discovered Tom’s Kitchen, located in Chelsea. I was looking for a breakfast place in the neighbourhood, since we would be spending part of the day there when Foursquare led me to this place. After walking a few blocks in all directions but Cale Street (where it is located) we finally got ourselves seated, just in time for breakfast. Set in a townhouse, this is the informal counterpart to Michelin starred Tom Aikens restaurant. On the menu: comfort food, from breakfast to dinner.
Dinner at Alpenstueck proved to be one of the most memorable nights during our stay in Berlin.
Alpenstueck BĂ¤ckerei was probably our favorite breakfast spot in Berlin.
.HBC was one of my favorite dining experiences ever so I’m a tad bit sad to learn the restaurant/bar/art space has closed since our 2012 visit. Or maybe that’s the universe trying to tell me to publish blog posts way sooner.
Another one of our favorite lunch spots in Berlin has to be CafĂ© Oliv.
When we headed to Berlin, I did some location-scouting beforehand. One of the addresses that showed up was Kaffeemitte, located in, well, Mitte. However, I forgot to write down the address in my city Moleskine…
Surprisingly, Kaffeemitte was located just down the street from our hotel, The Weinmeister. I’m not a big fan of all the sandwiches that taste the same everywhere, but this place was a nice change from all that. I had one of the best lunches here, although it wasn’t that cheap.
I’ve heard they serve delicious dishes and breakfast as well, but unfortunately we didn’t go back there, because we either weren’t in the area or had plans to explore other places.
The fun thing here is that it’s frequented by Berliners, so it’s your ideal spot to do some people-watching. I really loved our location in Mitte and all the great lunch places, such as Kaffeemitte, definitely contribute to that.
I guess I’m a sucker for fall recipes, especially recipes involving any kind of pumpkin. So, when I stumbled upon butternut squash in my local supermarket, I ventured out online pursuing the best pumpkin/butternut recipes.
One of them was this penne with butternut squash, pancetta and sage. Sage goes extremely well with any variety of pumpkin, so it’ll be no surprise when I tell you that this one was a winner.
On a side note: Martha Stewart offers some of the best recipes, especially if you’re looking for typical American dishes. I just love her website (yes, I do realize that my (desperate) housewife-level is increasing rapidly right now).
Because I don’t always use the oven on weeknights, I usually put the butternut in a frying pan. If you don’t have fresh sage leaves around, you can easily replace them with dried sage herbs. You might want to add a tablespoon (or two) and taste to your liking. My experience, when using dried herbs, is that you have to use a lot more before it comes near the taste of fresh herbs.
(in the last photo you can see my one and only Le Creuset oven dish and my superb Microplane grater, both purchased at Byttebier)
Monday’s lunch break could easily be described as one of my favorite lunch breaks ever. Working in Bruges does have it perks, y’all.
Last weekend marked the third edition of Kookeet, an annual culinary event catered by the top restaurants in Bruges. Bruges has a total of 14 Michelin stars thanks to restaurants such as De Karmeliet, Hertog Jan and Sans Cravate. 9 of them were represented at Kookeet, which marked the character of the event.
The concept was really easy: 29 Bruges-based chefs created an hors d’oeuvre for the event. A stylish tent village hosted all the restaurants and a bar. All the plates were reasonably priced at 4, 6 or 8 euros each.
I went there during my lunch break (hurray for events prolonged on Mondays) and had 4 hors d’oeuvres for 20 euros. Not bad if you recount that I had a dish from a 3-star Michelin restaurant. Because a lot of restaurants are closed on Mondays, most of the chefs were attending as well. I can confirm that my heart skipped a beat when my plate was handed to me by the chef himself. I might not be a teenager anymore swooning over a Backstreet Boy, but hand me the most delicious food ever and I’m sold.
Next on the bucket list? That would be dinner at one of the restaurants present at Kookeet. With an anniversary coming up, who knows it might eventually happen for real (that’s a hint, honey).
During our summer staycation we tried to visit a few new spots and have dinner with friends on a regular basis. One of those nights consisted of a visit to Gaston, the rooftop bar & restaurant courtesy of Coeur d’Artichaut, in Ghent.
This pop-up is now around for the third consecutive year. With the perfect summer weather we’ve been experiencing, I’m sure many people were glad they could dine on the rooftop terrace, but the interior is as beautiful. I certainly wouldn’t mind stopping by on a rainy day.
Don’t expect an abundance of dishes on the menu, although anyone can find something they’ll like on it. We certainly had a great evening with drinks (including the very own Gaston champagne), good food and friends.
Oh, and bonus points are in order for the refreshing aqua spray available on every table.
Mastouche is one of the newest pop-up initiatives in Ghent. The team behind Mastouche aims to add that extra something to the Dampoort neighbourhood, which has been going through a revival over the last couple of years.
The asparagus season is full on which means asparagus dishes make it on our plate on a weekly base. I try to do something new with them now and then (tonight we had them with zucchini and soy sauce), but my favorite recipe never disappoints: asparagus with linguine and ganda ham.
Peel the asparagus and cook them for 8-10 minutes.
Cook the linguine and drain.
Add the cream to the asparagus and the linguine and toss until well combined. I also tend to add a bit of the cooking water of the asparagus as it adds to the overall taste.
Cut the Ganda Ham into strips and add it to the pasta and asparagus.
Finish with a sprinkling of parmesan cheese.
Ingredients (serves 4):
– 1kg asparagus
– 250g linguine
– 200g Ganda Ham
– 125ml cream (light)
– 50g parmesan cheese
The tea towel featured in the last photo is by Hay (one can never own too many tea towels).
For more information on Ganda Ham, please visit their website by clicking here.
We visited Ghent over the weekend which lent the perfect opportunity to visit a few places on my bucket list.
One of them was Ycono. Located next to the red-light district, this concept bar offers a mix of coffee, art & design. The coffee list is endless with a number of creative outlets such as the Spread Hazel we had (think latte macchiato x nutella x whipped cream x cacao x noisettes and I’m in heaven). Besides coffee, breakfast and lunch are also served in this petite bar.
If you’re looking for something new on the home decor front, Ycono sells a selection of design brands as well.
The place also serves as a (temporary) art gallery. Every now and then a new artist is featured.
You probably know by now that I adore coffee, art and design, so Ycono is on top of my Ghent list from now on! If you happen to like the same mix, then do pay a visit to Ycono on your next visit to Ghent.
Our friend Carmen provided us with these appropriate buttons. Everyone continued to wish us a happy birthday as well when wearing this.
A couple of years ago the ladies and I decided to go on a trip when we’d be turning 30. Fast forward to 2013, when we found ourselves in London over the Easter weekend to celebrate our 30th birthday.
From now on, there’s no need for me to drive all the way to Ghent or Antwerp to find a decent coffee bar. Let me introduce you to Books & Brunch, located in the center Bruges.
I always loved Ghent, so I try to visit it on a regular basis. Mostly because my bestie lives there, but also because the city hosts the raddest spots in Belgium. My job is to find out about these and meet up with the bestie at one of them. On top of my bucket list (until recently) was Clouds in my Coffee.
Torvehallerne KBH is a covered market right in the heart of Copenhagen.
When planning our trip to Copenhagen, Oliver and the Black Circus was on top of my dinner bucket list after the many raving reviews I read about this place.
During the last few hours of our trip, we made it to The Royal Cafe.
When I was planning our Copenhagen trip I already knew one thing: deciding where to eat wouldn’t be easy. Browsing through a couple of my favorite travel blogs/websites, I narrowed down the list to a couple of restaurants.
Earlier this year we had a dinner at Balthazar. It’s a cafe annex bistro located in the city center of Kortrijk. I love the way they decorated the place, it’s quite cozy, thanks to the use of dark hues and wood. It has a great menu offering a variety of dishes that could be found in your (grand)mother’s recipe book. During summer (when we went) most of the people hang out outside the cafe as it’s located alongside the canal. The bistro space isn’t that spacious though, so it might be a good idea to make a reservation before heading there.
When my dad brought two 30-pound pumpkins into our house, I could not help but browsing the internet for recipes including pumpkin. Not long after, I decided to serve a pumpkin-inspired menu on Halloween night. The hubby and I opted to stay in, have dinner and watch a scary movie.
Pumpkin soup and pie were the obvious dishes on the menu. I was a bit clueless about the main course, but eventually decided on the penne with roasted butternut squash, pancetta and sage I found on the Martha Stewart website. I had made this before, only now I used a pumpkin instead of butternut squash. I also added some carrots as they go well with it.
The recipes for the soup and pie are in Dutch, but I’m sure it’s fairly easy to find a similar recipe in English, if you’d like to try your hand at this.
(on a side note: I left out the goat cheese and ham in the pumpkin soup. I cooked the pasta with a chicken bouillon cube and used half a cup of the pasta liquid to prepare the rest of the meal. I also stirred the pumpkin and carrot instead of roasting them in the oven.)
(Recipes: 1 – 2 – 3)
First of all… you must know I’m all into winter food. I just love the winter vegetables, I can’t help it. So, imagine this: a pop-up store in Ghent that servers glorious meatballs. Of course I had to try this. I might not have chosen the best timing ever, but since they’re only open on Monday, Wednesday and Friday (10am-3pm), I had to go during my vacation. Mind you, I booked our table 2 weeks in advance. It proved not to be necessary as it was 30 degrees outside when I had that famous glory ball. Delicious minced meat, seasoned to perfection, stuffed with leek and ham, accompanied by the best mashed potatoes ever. Oh, and I must not forget about the sauce, mouth-watering, I tell you!
If I have pretty much convinced you by now, I’d suggest you hop into your car, on your bike (basically whatever transportation you need to get there), head to the Sint-Jacobsnieuwstraat 103 in Ghent and experience that glorious ball.
Hurry up, it’s a pop-up store, so this story won’t last forever (well, until September 1st, that is).
For more information, visit the Balls & Glory website.
You know what they say about enjoying the little things in life… That’s exactly what I’ve been trying to do over the last couple of weeks. They include having a relaxed homemade dinner, having Hiro over in our bed in the morning (only in the weekends, though) and visiting my buddy Joey at my parents’ house (he still sits under my chair in their kitchen).