As I look back on my Europe posts, I feel bad for having slacked on my Foodie Fridays. And it’s really not fair as we did eat a lot of good food. So here, I continue my recap of Europe with the absolute best meal we ate in each city/country. Some are budget and some are more expensive, but each is representative of the local cuisine and worth seeking out.
London: English breakfast and tea
Ah, the full English breakfast. It’s more calories and grease than anyone should consume in one sitting but so delicious. And there is probably nowhere better in London to get it than at Regency Cafe, for one very unique reason (besides the exceptional food). I actually wrote a full length post about it (here), so find out what’s so special about it!
Paris: baguette sandwich and nutella crepe
Mmmmm the Parisian baguette… baked with such a perfectly hard crusty shell! It’s so good that even D will risk his gluten intolerance to chow down one (or two) a day. Parisian boulangeries have truly mastered the craft of baguette baking, and the temptation is everywhere as there’s one literally around every corner with a display of sandwiches. My favorite is the cheese and prosciutto, and D’s favorite is salami and cornichons. And of course, you’ve gotta finish the meal with a freshly made nutella crepe for dessert. At around 3-3.50€ a piece, this is pretty much all we can afford in Paris anyway.
Belgium: Leffe, bucket of mussels, frites, and waffle
I never in my life thought I’d be eating a bucket of mussels, as I’ve always had a strong aversion to any mollusky seafood. But apparently, that is the thing to get in Belgium. And you know what? I actually didn’t completely hate it and happily polished off the bucket with D. The mussels are soft and contain no fishiness at all. Of course, round out the meal with a Leffe (D likes the blonde) and frites (Belgium does fries unlike anywhere else). For dessert, it’s gotta be the famous Belgium waffle.
Netherlands: the spiciest Thai food you have EVER had
When in Amsterdam…. eat Asian food? Wait, what?
YES! Due to colonization of Indonesia and history of trade with that area, this Dutch country produces the best Indonesian and Thai food outside of the actual countries. And let me warn you that when they say spicy, THEY MEAN BUSINESS! We asked for the pad Thai “a little spicy”, and what we got was mouth on fire, teary eyed, and face numbing-ly scorching hot. And it was so delicious that we couldn’t help but go back for more day after day.
Berlin: Durum doner
The donor kebap is the staple street food throughout Europe. But Berlin may do it better than the rest. Berlin has no shortage of street food, from currywurst to Indian curry. But at only 3.80€, the durum doner is the best deal in the city. Sliced meat, shredded green and purple cabbage, a generous slathering of sauce, and chili flakes are all assembled into a large wrap, and when it’s handed to you, you find yourself holding a couple-pound monster. Want to up the deliciousness even more? Ask for it in a lahmacun wrap.
Hungary: Hungarian beef stew
I LOVED Hungarian cuisine! I’m missing it a lot now that I’m back in Southern California, but unfortunately, it hasn’t seem to have made its way over here. Of all the dishes we tried, we always came back to the beef stew with rice. It’s simple in concept – super tender pieces of beef in a rich spiced broth – but complicated in flavor. I could eat this everyday and not get sick of it.
To see all the other Hungarian food we ate, check it out here!
Did you know that the weinerschnitzel (a flat pounded out and bread piece of meat) originated from Vienna? And yes, they do it better than anywhere else I’ve had (ahem… compared to their German neighbors). This dish is Vienna’s namesake and must not be missed. Pair it with the warm mustard potato salad and finish with a piece of apple strudel.
Czech Republic: Meat platter with cabbage
I had such a hard time deciding what’s the ultimate Czech meal. Is it the meats? The pork kuckle? The goose liver? Ultimately, it has the be the meat platter. This one includes a 1/4 roasted duck, sausage, bacon, bread and potato dumplings, and white and red cabbage (sauerkraut). The duck is juicy and tender, the sauerkraut tangy, and the dumplings are the perfect medium to soak in the fat runoff to deliver to the mouth.
Oh, what can i say about pierogis that I haven’t already said before? Pierogis are my love, the perfect meeting point of the familiar and the new. BUT, not all pierogis are made equal. I still maintain that the best I’ve ever had was at Pierogarnia in Wroclaw, where each batch is made fresh to order and with love. I would probably say that I miss this the most.
Turkey: Turkish breakfast
The Turkish breakfast gives the English one a run for the heartiest breakfast out there. But the Turkish one focuses on sweet instead of savory, so I’d prefer it every day of the week! A full one contains a variety of cheeses, fruit jams, salad, olives, and my favorite: honey with clotted cream – I swear, a combination sent straight from the gods. All this is eaten with freshly baked simit (sesame rings), and washed down with multiple cups of Turkish tea.
What were your favorite foods in Europe? There are a lot of European countries I haven’t been to yet, so also let me know what I need to eat next time!
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