Moules-frites, an advance on your next vacation on the coasts of Belgium, France and the Netherlands

Saturday, 27 January 2024 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Bon appétit
Reading Time:  4 minutes

© flickr.com - Archangel12/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – Archangel12/cc-by-2.0

Moules-frites or moules et frites (Dutch: mosselen-friet) is a main dish of mussels and French fries originating in Belgium. The title of the dish is French, moules meaning mussels and frites fries, with the Dutch name for the dish meaning the same. It is considered the national dish of Belgium.

Although moules-frites are popular in many countries, it is thought that the dish originated in Belgium. It is likely that it was originally created by combining mussels, a popular and cheap foodstuff eaten around the Flemish coast, and fried potatoes, which were commonly eaten around the country in winter when no fish or other food was available.

On average, between 25 and 30 tonnes of mussels are consumed each year in Belgium as moules-frites. Much of the mussels consumed in Belgium come from mussel farms in nearby Zeeland in the Netherlands.

© flickr.com - Archangel12/cc-by-2.0 © flickr.com - dennis and aimee jonez/cc-by-sa-2.0 © flickr.com - Luistxo/cc-by-sa-2.0 © flickr.com - Archangel12/cc-by-2.0 © Takeaway/cc-by-sa-3.0 © LittleGun
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© flickr.com - dennis and aimee jonez/cc-by-sa-2.0
The ways in which the mussels are cooked in the dish can vary significantly. Some common variants include:

  • Moules marinière: Probably the most common and internationally recognisable recipe, moules marinière includes white wine, shallots, parsley, and butter.
  • Moules nature: The mussels are steamed with celery, leeks, and butter.
  • Moules à la crème: Another common recipe, thickened with flour and cream.
  • Moules parquées: A dish, probably originating in Brussels, of raw mussels on the half-shell, served with a lemonmustard sauce.
  • Moules à la bière: Mussels cooked in a sauce containing beer instead of white wine.
  • Moules à l’ail: Mussels cooked with sliced or minced garlic.

Less commonly, fusion variants are seen in which the stock may be flavoured with non-local ingredients such as Espelette pepper or Pernod liquor. They can also be served with “Mosselsaus”, a sauce that is made with mayonnaise, mustard, and vinegar.

In various forms, frites or friet play an important role in Belgian culture and cuisine. Within Belgium, bintje potatoes are generally preferred as a basis to make fries because of their high starch content. They are generally double-fried (fried, left to cool and then fried again) in order to make them both moist in the core and crispy on the outside.

As a dish, the moules and the frites are usually served separately, to avoid the fries becoming soggy in the sauce. Often, the moules are served in the pan used to cook them. A second dish is generally provided for the discarded mussel shells.

Read more on Food & Wine – Moules Frites and Wikipedia Moules-frites (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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