A girl from the Orlando Lady Crafters (a group I am a member of) has habit of planning wonderful gatherings. We recently met and she invited me to her most recent gathering – Belgium night.
Orlando Lady Crafters do not knit; we are a group of ladies who are interested in craft beer. The range of experiences in the group go from home brewers ready to start their own brewery to newbies who are just now venturing past ciders. It is a lovely group of ladies that I’m glad I know.
For Belgium night the idea is that you bring a Belgium beer to share for tasting and a Belgium dish. Not many of us were familiar with Belgium food past mussels with fries or Belgium waffles. I did some internet searches and came across this recipe for stoemp. Stoemp is a mashed potato dish mixed with some vegetable. It is supposed to be the quintessential comfort food. I chose it partly because it seemed simple to make and partly because I have never cooked with leeks before. I pretty much stayed on recipe except the addition of more garlic….I always add more garlic.

We always try to use organic ingredients whenever possible. Here is the bounty from whole foods.

Since it was my first time with leeks I did some internet searching for proper preparation. You are supposed to cut off the dark green leaves (I have saved them for soup stock later). I left too much green in my first cut so ended up cutting some more off later. Instructions on the web say to slice the leeks down middle and then 1/4 way from there to make it easier to clean the inside dirt. After cleaning I sliced it into small slivers.

While the potatoes boil I prepare the leeks.

Leeks are sauteed with onions, garlic and butter (butter yum).

Potatoes are fully mashed

After the leeks are translucent the broth and cream is added according to instructions. Once the liquid is cooked down it all mixed together and topped with nutmeg.

I really liked the recipe. I just wish I choose red potatoes instead of the boring light brown ones. I would have added more salt too, especially since I was making it for others (we salt much less at home). I did get some praises so I might keep this one in my recipe book for comfort food times (holidays, etc).


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