Thursday, December 13, 2012

I want to go to there: Antwerp, Belgium



Antwerpen-Centraal Railway Station

When my friend Marc suggested a day trip to Belgium, I immediately listed three things in my mind and deemed them Belgian mandatories: chocolate, waffles and beer (in what I thought was my order of interest and importance).

Let me tell you this: the chocolate was not disappointing (yum!), the beer was, well, beer to me (but maybe slightly more exciting being served in a pretty glass?), but the waffles - OH THE WAFFLES. There's not enough I can say about authentic Belgian waffles, or "Liege" waffles as I was told by the Internet upon my return and after a frantic Googling episode of "authentic Belgian waffle recipes." Make these I must! The difference from the American version of a Belgian waffle is that these come from a thicker, dough-like batter, as they are made using yeast and something called pearl sugar that sounds as beautiful as it tastes. I'll absolutely be making these sometime over the holidays.

In the six or so hours I was in Antwerp, I made the mistake of not immediately trying waffles until the last hour of my trip, in which I consumed no less than two waffles (one with chocolate!) in a span on five minutes and then spent the remainder of the trip feeling like waffles were seeping from my pores, which I'm told is how things like that work.

Other than my newly-found love for waffles, I learned that Antwerp is home to the world's largest diamond district and saw how incredibly beautiful the city is - starting with the train station and ending with a cathedral that was constructed starting in the early 1300s, and remarkably home to several original (and breathtakingly beautiful) paintings of Christ by Peter Paul Rubens.


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