Sunday, 24 May 2015

[Out of Brussels] Au Flan Breton, Tervuren

If you go down to the woods'll find Tervuren, a pleasant if faintly sleepy town about twenty minutes by tram outside Brussels. Its main attraction, Belgium's Africa Museum, is currently closed for restoration, but it still proved to be a nice spot for a woodland walk. Initially, however, there didn't seem to be many options for lunch (one café was advertising steak and chips, but it turned out that we would have to wait until the following day for this weekly - monthly? - treat) so we were relieved to find Au Flan Breton, a small café with a bakery next door.

It's clearly a fairly new enterprise, very clean and smart (rather than self-consciously trendy) inside. Despite the name, staff and customers were more Dutch- than French-speaking, and (not surprisingly, given that we're in Flanders) overt Francophilia is kept to a minimum - including on the menu, which mixes croque-monsieurs and quiches with spaghetti bolonaise, 'toast Kannibaal' and other more Dutch delights. More interesting than this take on Belgian internal politics, though, were the variants on these dishes. My father's croque 'Angel' (9.95E) contained brie, honey, rocket and pear - a much more sophisticated combination than the usual ham and cheese and a very effective one. It also came in the form of two absolutely massive double slices - no skimping here.
My quiche Lorraine (7.95E), meanwhile, was less a quivering, genteel slice of savoury egg custard than a hearty, rustic flan packed with onion and bacon, encased in flaky pastry with no hint of sogginess. My mother had a 'Firenze' sandwich (6E) with offending dairy-based ingredients removed - this was another substantial affair accompanied, as the other dishes were, by a large and varied helping of salad. All that food left no room for dessert, although we did manage a rather sugary and delicious 'melo-cake' (like a Tunnock's tea cake) from the bakery next door.
I admit that I'm not planning a return trip to Tervuren in the immediate future. If I do make one, though, I will certainly return to Au Flan Breton.

Hoornzeelstraat 6
3080 Tervuren



  1. I like the sound of the croque Angel. Brie and pear always pair well for me.

    Scuse pun.

  2. Whenever I want a nice lunchdish I order the signature salad "Au Flan Breton" a delicious combination salad with smoked salmon, shrimps, bacon, croutons, tomato, cucumber, rucola lettuce and a fresh vinaigrette for a mere € 16,95
    One word: Superb!