Saturday, 5 July 2008

Belgium - Fries

I've always loved fries.

McDonald's fries are thin and long and most of the time too salty cos employees have to put a full shot of salt on the fresh fries every time. A lot of customers complain and always tell me not to put salt on the fries.

KFC fries are medium sized and do not have salt on them. Customers put the salt on themselves. But they're tasteless and bland. I still don't understand people like Shirley and Willie who insist Malaysia's KFC is better than London. I can't tell the difference. Maybe its my problem..

Burger King chips are the best (i think). They are medium sized and just taste oh-so-good. I don't know why. They just are. Maybe some BK employee can tell me why. What special ingredients?

FYI, For decades, McD cooked its fries in a mixture of about 7% cottonseed oil and 93% beef tallow. The mixture gave the fries their unique flavor. But they claim to be vegetarian until they were exposed. Anyway, now they no longer contain beef extracts. They contain "natural flavor" but purely vegetarian.

Anyway, Belgians are proud of their fries/frites. There are lots of fries shops selling just fries/frites. Whichever rocks your boat.

I decided to try one. Made with Belgian Bintje potatoes, cooked twice and served in a paper cone with a side of sauce of your choice. I ordered mine from this shop below in Central Brussels.

Normally in London, you ask for Ketchup and Mayo only. What other choices you have? Unless in McD you can ask for BBQ, Curry, Sweet and Sour sauce. But here in Belgium, When he asked me sauce? I asked what type you have? He said: mayonnaise, ketchup, andalouse, cocktail, tartare, pili-pili, moutardo, americaine, curry-ketchup and pickles. I just gaped at him open mouthed. Then i said, err..why don't you choose for me.

He chose Andalouse for me:

Dinner for the day.

Big portion of chips with a generous topping. I can never finish this.

I tried to memorize the taste. It tasted like Mayonnaise with a bit of tomato spicyness and mustard. The fries are extra crispy even though they're fat fries and not thin. Tastes good and I'd love to try the other sauces though.

I categorize fries to thin, medium and fat fries cos people like Willie only like thin fries like McD fries. He doesn't like or even want to try fat fries. We once had a stupid debate during dinner. Shirley, Willie and I over the portion of chips we had. Over the size of the chips; Willie said they're delicious and kept eating them but they are medium sized and I asked willie why he liked it. Cos he only likes thin fries. I don't know why. Which reminds me, we went to McD in Leuven. It's not cheap.

We were the only weird Asians who ordered meals. Every other local just bought a burger each. It could be because:

1) The McD meal is expensive. Willie's Royal Crispy Bacon Meal with Sprite came up 7 euros plus. My Fillet-o-Fish Meal with Coke came to the same amount. Seriously, that's expensive. London's Meal is £3.69. Convert 7 euros = about £5.

2) They don't like McD fries. They like their own fries. Seriously, their fries shops are packed full all the time, night and day.

McD Menu and prices. Very few selections.

We went to another fast food chain called Quick. Its a local and cheaper version of McD and its everywhere. I only saw one McD in Leuven and no KFC, no Pizza Hut, no BK. Even in Brussels, you hardly see those fast food chains. Seems Belgium is keeping these franchises out and keeping their own local franchises in only to avoid competition?

Giant. Doesn't look huge to me..

We ordered Giant. That's the name of the burger at Quick and I think it's supposed to be like Big Mac. It consists of two slices of beef patties, cheese, tomatoes, onion, lettuce and sauce. So, yea. A bit like Big Mac.

After you take off the cardboard holding the burger in place

Medium sized fries.

Willie off to work.

Me, getting lost in a forest. I was trying to find IMEC and following the map. But the road in the map was under construction and when I arrived at the under repair and closed roads, I thought: oh shit.

After walking 3 hours, I gave up and went to the city center. Truth was, I wasn't lost at all. If I had just continued walking along that road and followed my senses, I would have arrived. But it was too far and it was getting dark by then. By dark, I meant it was going to rain any time.

The loong road to nowhere or so it seemed.

Entrance/exit to the park/forest

The photos above were taken in a huge park/forest, I'm not sure. I walked in, took some photos and came out. Not that stupid to wander inside and get lost or kidnapped or raped. Choi. Touch wood.

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