What’s a moule? Moule is the French word for mussel. And mussels with French fries is a very popular dish (moules et frites) in France and Belgium. My short blog is about two different styles of moules I enjoyed; one in Belgium and the other in France.
Moules in Belgium
As I mentioned in earlier blog articles, Belgium is well known for their beers. So one of my lunch meals was moules cooked with a blonde Belgium beer, and paired with a Grimbergen bruin beer. The moules arrived steaming in a pot. Opening the pot, the moules were cooked with onions, celery and of course beer. The beer flavour was not evident. The moules though were very rich and flavourful and went very nicely with the still slightly crunchy celery. The beer cleansed your palate for the next mouthful of moules. A large pot of moules with fries cost EURO 21 in Brugge, Belgium.
Moules in France
I enjoyed the moules in France in the coastal city of Courseulles-sur-Mer. The restaraunt was offering the moules with a few different seasonings. I chose the “moules au Camembert“, as Camembert cheese is the specialty of the Normandy region. Why not go with the best? I had never tried moules with a cheese or a creamy sauce before and was looking forward to this culinary adventure. The moules arrived in a steaming pot. The melted cheese and cream sauce were very rich but not too rich that you could not taste the moules. The flavour of the moules is a bit toned down by the sauce, so would be good for someone that gets overpowered by the natural flavour of the moules. To this doubly rich meal, I enjoyed a glass of Pelforth Blonde ale. The beer again helped to cleanse my palate for the next rich moule morsel. Being a small town/city, the moules plus the glass of beer cost only EURO 9.90. An excellent deal for an excellent meal.
Which did I prefer? I’d say both were great. Completely different flavour profiles and textures. The next time you are ordering moules and frites (there are places in Vancouver, BTW), try to see what different seasonings your restaurant offers. Enjoy!