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Belgian food, EU-style: the BE European Cooking Contest

12:40 14/03/2013

‘Terroir’ translates as local products consumed at the ideal moment. By revealing what the local market has to offer and what every season has in store, they can enhance respect for the environment. Belgium has an amazing range of top-class food products: Brussels sprouts and endives are commonly known, while Belgian waffles, chocolates and beers have a worldwide reputation. However, knowledge of the Belgian terroir often ends there.

For this reason, BE Café Marché Jourdan is launching the BE European Cooking Contest – an initiative to raise the profile of the Belgian terroir among Brussels’ international community. 

BE Café Marché Jourdan at Sofitel Brussels Europe has the Belgian terroir as its calling card. It works closely with the suppliers at the Marché Jourdan and its chef regularly revisits Belgian cuisine, giving it a contemporary twist. 

Now, to make the Belgian terroir better known, BE Café Marché Jourdan has organised a cooking contest for civil servants from the EU institutions, expats working in and around Brussels and members of the international press. The objective is to discover how an amateur cook with non-Belgian roots would prepare a dish using typical local ingredients, thus revisiting Belgian cuisine with an international touch. 

The opening event will be held on March 24 at 10.00 at Sofitel Brussels Europe in the European Quarter. It will consist of a visit to the Marché Jourdan in the presence of the jury, giving participants the chance to meet Belgian artisans and choose the ingredients they will use. 

The process

Candidates submit a recipe sheet for their dish – which can be a starter, main course or dessert – with a photo, ingredient list, the recipe, required kitchenware and an accompanying drink. A jury will select the finalists based on this submission and those chosen will have the chance to cook their dish in the kitchens of BE Café Marché Jourdan at the main event on April 28. 

The prize is a weekend in a Sofitel hotel in a European destination. Candidates should register no later than March 19. 

The jury

Hughes Belin, journalist and author of the Brussels’ Eurodistrict restaurants guide

Catherine Piette, managing director of the Karikol slow food consortium

Dirk De Prins, culinary journalist and author of publications including De Belgische Keuken 

Ruth Goossens, editor-in-chief at Marie Claire 

Marc Pâquet, chef at BE Café Marché Jourdan

Alain Troubat, owner and chef of Stirwen restaurant in Etterbeek

BE Café Marché Jourdan , 1 Place Jourdan, 1040 Brussels

This event is supported by The Bulletin, Around Brussels, New Europe and Press Club Brussels Europe

Written by The Bulletin