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Posts Tagged ‘grey shrimp croquettes’

 Click the above “écusson” pic for a direct link to the interactive map and website for the history of L’ Ilot Sacré.

L’ Ilot Sacré got its name after a battle of the local restaurants, land lords and associations in the 1950-ties against promoters who saw big bucks to be made. Just read the history in the above mentioned website. They wrote it better than I would.

My contribution: just some suggestions about the places where you will get good to excellent quality food or where you can go sniffing the local atmosphere, sipping coffee, enjoying a beer or other drink while watching people. Although it is a popular and touristic area, you still can enjoy the buzz, just be attentive to avoid tourist traps. Just don’t forget the place is prime location and that means pricier than in less popular neighbourhoods. So, no real cheap deals available!

 Two of the most popular streets in  L’ Ilot Sacré are called ‘Rue des Bouchers’ and ‘Petite Rue des Bouchers’. That translates like ‘Butcher street’ and ‘Small Butcher street’. A lot of restaurants are attracting patrons while lots of seafood and vegetables are on display on ice, in front of the resto. A waiter at the door will be soliciting you in any possible language. As my wife and I walk by, it’s all “Ni Hao” from left and right… 

In general these are the places where you take some nice souvenir pictures with your friends and family. Just don’t eat there. They might propose Belgian, French, even Italian, Portuguese or Spanish cuisine. Many of the very young kitchen staff are sometimes not even trained cooks, but people from all over Europe including Eastern Europe, the Balkan, North and Sub-Saharian Africa.  Nothing wrong with that, unless they got declared ‘cook’ after half a day training!

 

Let’s point out some addresses  in  the neighbourhood. For drinks and watching people:

Delirium cafe –

A La Mort Subite-  (translates as: At A Sudden Death) 

Inside "A la Mort Subite" - Click the picture

Inside "A la Mort Subite" - Click the picture

Le Roy d’ Espagne –

Toone estaminet –

Beer shops, restaurants, taverns all over the place – I suggest “Aux Armes de Bruxelles”  – “Restaurant Vincent” – “Scheltema” – “L’ Ogenblik” – “Le Marmiton” etc…

More to follow in Part II, coming soon.

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A real classic in the traditional  Belgian Cuisine.

I want to share one of the best classic recipes from the Flemish Belgian cuisine. A shame that here in Asia it’s almost impossible to get fresh North Sea grey shrimps, so this recipe is only meant to make you hungry.

Otherwise just buy some airline tickets to Belgium and savour this fine food in one of the many restaurants in Brussels, Antwerp, Ghent, Bruges or at the coast.

But do pay attention: you might become addicted to that dish as much as I’m addicted to Hokkien mee or Char Koay Teow when in Penang!

And now the recipe:

for about 10 croquettes: 1/2 kg fresh unpeeled grey shrimps, 50 g of flour, 1/2 liter milk, 50 g of butter, 1 egg yolk, 1/2 lemon, 50 g shredded Emmenthaler cheese, pepper and salt.

Before the final frying you will need extra flour, a few drops of vegetable oil, breadcrumbs.

When serving add deep fried parsley and a lemon wedge to the plate.

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First start with the hardest part of the job: Peel the shrimps and keep both the heads and shells/carcasses apart.

 

Grijze Garnalen

Heat up the milk with the shrimp heads and shells. When it reaches its boiling point, turn off the fire and let the shrimps’ taste impregnate the milk during half an hour. Sieve the milk and keep aside. (Réserver).

Make a white roux with butter and flour + pepper and salt. Make sure that it doesn’t get burned sticky on the bottom of the pan! So: keep stirring.  

Mix the milk with the roux to obtain some kind of non liquid dough. Keep stirring. Remove the pot from the fire after 5 minutes and add the juice of half a lemon, the egg yolk, the shrimps, the cheese, pepper and salt. Mix that dough.

Butter a metallic plate and transfer the dough on it. Spread the dough on the plate till a thickness of about 2 cm. Cover with a plastic foil and put in the fridge for the night.

Next day you either cut rectangular croquettes or roll traditional cylindrical croquettes. Use a shaker,  a whisk or two forks to beat the egg whites. Beat till foamy but still liquid.  Next pull the croquettes through some flour, then through the egg whites and finally through a plate of breadcrumbs.

Deep fry till golden, frying temp. at 180 degrees Celsius. It will only take a few minutes. When ready put the croquettes on some kitchen tissue to allow absorbing most of the oil.

Deep fry the parsley for about 10 seconds . Dress the croquettes, parsley and a wedge of lemon on a warm plate . Before eating sprinkle  lemon juice over the croquettes. 

Grey Shrimp Croquette filled with "Crevettes de Zeebrugge"

Grey Shrimp Croquette filled with "Crevettes de Zeebrugge"

A chilled dry white wine is recommended to keep this dish company. Think Chablis, Sancerre or a light Muscadet sur Lie.

Bon appétit!

 

 

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