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Local and regional dishes in Northern France, information for day trippers and visitors to Calais, France – interested in restaurants and eating out

local dishes

Local Dishes / Food

Nord, Pas-de-Calais, France

There are many rich meaty dishes in this region. With France's largest fishing port, Boulogne, there is also a vast choice of reasonably priced fish. Bear in mind that Pot'sje vleish is in fact served cold. Regional products and information.

Event – Tous au Restaurant. Fourth annual event from 16th to 22nd September 2013. Described as a "week to discover the best restaurants in France". To encourage visitors to visit participating restaurants, they say "your guest is our guest (buy one get one free)". Online bookings start 5th September.



Beer or garlic soup.

Fish soup

Flamiche aux poireaux (brioche-like dough, usually garnished with leeks)

Soupe des maraichers – Vegetable and herb soup.

Endive tart (produced locally in St. Omer / Arras areas)

Goyère au maroilles (brioche-like tart with cheese, usually made with Maroilles)


Carbonade flamande – (Flemish dish) beef cooked in beer and onions

Coq à la bière (chicken stew) – chicken cooked in beer with vegetables. Best made with free-range poultry from Licques.

Hochepot – typically Flemish meat dish in which pieces of beef, lamb, veal and pork are cooked together, with all of the vegetables of the pot-au feu (stew).

Lapin au Prineaux – Rabbit with prunes.

Pot'sje vleish (Flemish dish from Dunkirk) – cold meat brawn made from three or four meats usually veal, bacon and rabbit (sometimes with chicken, duck and rabbit). Traditionally eaten cold, or warm accompanied by French fries and a good regional beer.


l'anguille au vert – eels cooked with herbs (sorrel, spinach, chervil, cress and parsley) in white wine

Carpe à la bière – carp from local rivers, cooked in butter with onions, shallots, celery, bay and thyme; then baked with strong local beer and spiced bread

Caudière – Fisherman's soup originally cooked by fishermen on their boats from fish caught the same day.

Mussels –

Waterzoï de poissons – a freshwater fish stew, a traditional recipe of poached and creamed fish accompanied with vegetables "en julienne" (leeks, celery and carrots).


Chou rouge à la lilloise – red cabbage and onions, with cloves, nutmeg and whole peppers. Best with roasted meats.


Babeluttes de Lille – caramels

Battu – a plain, brioche-like cake used for celebrations in the North

Betises – mint humbugs.

Chuques du Nord – coffee sweets with caramel centre

Cramique – type of brioche with currants

Gaufres – waffles

Flammekeuche – a northern pizza with thin crust, onions, bacon and creme fraiche

Pain d'épice – gingerbread

Tarte aux Fromages – a Light cheesecake made with cottage cheese and eggs

Tarte au Gros Bord – a speciality of the Boulonnaise region which is also known as a "li bouli" ('lait bouilli' or 'boiled milk') tart. Brioche-like dough garnished with warm custard and prunes.

Tarte aux sucre – brown sugar tart

Vergeoise – white or brown sugar with a particularly creamy and liquid consistency. Very nice in dairy products, it is often used in local dessert recipes (crème brûlée, tarte au sucre).

Bistouille – a strong coffee laced with alcohol

Cheeses – local cheeses tend to be strong

Maroilles (spicy, piquant and washed in beer every ten days during its maturation), Dauphin, Trappiste, Rollot, Vieux Lille, Boulette d'sAvesnes (powerful), Mont des Cats, Fromage de L'Avesnois, Fromage de Bergues.

Cooked Meats

Andouille de Cambrai – a cold meat product made from pork stomach and intestines. Product covered by a regional label.

Andouillette de Cambrai – cold meat product to be grilled, made from calf's caul.

Boudin flamand – Flemish black pudding, stuffed with currants, vergeoise and cinnamon.

Langue Lucullus – a speciality from Valenciennes. Smoked beef tongue pastries with a foie gras mousse.


Perlé de Groseille, is a locally produced apéritif. A champagne like drink it is made from redcurrants. You can visit the distillery, and taste and buy some.

La Maison du Perlé, 50, rue Principale, 62990. Loison-sur-Créquoise. Tel: 0033 321 81 30 85. Open July – August every day 10.00am – 7.00pm. April, May, June and September, every day 10.00am – 7.00pm. Closed Saturday and Sunday morning.

Genièvre de Houlle (Dutch gin) – a natural cereal brandy, obtained by distilling wheat and malted barley with juniper berries. Usually consumed as a digestive liqueur with ice. Distilled in Houlle near St. Omer. There are factory visits.

Distillery Persyn, 19, route de Watten. 62910 HOULLE. Tel: 0033 321 93 01 71.

Distillery de Loos, 30, rue Gambetta – BP 98. 59373 LOOS. cedex. Tel: 0033 320 07 10 77.

Useful Outside links

Cote d'Opale Gourmande – Regional group of good quality restaurants.

Toques d'Opale – Local group of restaurants agreeing to set certain standards.

Saveurs NPDC – Comité de Promotion NORD, Pas de Calais. Local dishes and recipes.

Pages Restos – Pages Restos.

Restauranteurs de France – Restauranteurs de France. Patchy but good in places.

Le Gout – Le Gout, France's annual food tasting week.

Table Auberges – Table Auberges.

The Other side. Interesting link about Flemmish food.

Slow Food France – Slow Food France.

Les Routes du Terroir – Les Routes du Terroir. Worth visiting (French).

happy cow vegetarian – Happy Cow, Vegetarian restaurants Wordwide.

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