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(waterzooi) (79743868).jpg
Fish Waterzooi garnished with vegetables
Type Stew
Place of origin  Belgium
Region or state Flanders
Main ingredients Fish or chicken, vegetable broth, egg yolks, cream
Cookbook: Waterzooi  Media: Waterzooi

Waterzooi or "Viszooitje" is a Belgian dish of stew, originating in Flanders. Its name derives from the Dutch term "zooi" which means "mess". It is sometimes called Gentse Waterzooi which refers to the Belgian town of Ghent where it originated. The original dish is often made of fish, either freshwater or sea, (known as Viszooitje), though today chicken waterzooi (Kippenwaterzooi) is more common. The most accepted theory is that rivers around Ghent became too polluted and the fish there disappeared.[1] It is said to have been the favourite dish of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor who was born in Ghent. Bycatch is the reason this dish exists, so there is not really a specific recipe.


All versions are based on a soup-base of egg yolk, cream and thickened vegetable broth. The stew itself contains fish or chicken, vegetables including carrots, onions, celeriac, leeks, Potatoes and herbs such as parsley, thyme, bay-leaves and sage.[2]


Originally, burbot was used but this fish had all but disappeared from the rivers until its recent return due to conservation efforts.[3] Nowadays, fish such as eel, pike, carp and bass are used, though other fish such as cod, monkfish, or halibut can be used. Gentse Waterzooi van Tarbot includes turbot.


Chicken is a popular alternative to fish in the recipe, though the rest of the ingredients remain the same.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Gentse Waterzooi » Gentblogt". gentblogt.be. 
  2. ^ "Le Waterzooi Gantois (cuisine de Gand)". La Bonne Cuisine. Retrieved 11 March 2013. 
  3. ^ "Na meer dan 40 jaar opnieuw kwabaal in Grote Nete". Het Laatste Nieuws. 29 June 2010. Retrieved 11 March 2013. 

External link[edit]

Media related to Waterzooi at Wikimedia Commons