Sunday, June 29, 2014

Hero's! Mouthwatering burgers have been found in Europe. Finally.

In terms of my weekend, I would say this one was a particularly delectable one.  Thumbs UP.  On Friday night, an American friend of mine told me he had found a burger place that served incredible burgers.  I looked at him doubtfully and said this was unlikely, as burgers in Europe fall far below the spectrum of what qualifies as a good burger in the US.  I would not use the word "incredible" to describe burgers in Europe, ever, as I have not found one here that's come close thus far.  So I dismissed his enthusiasm assuming he too, like myself, was desperate for a great burger and just settled having found one that was "good enough."

On Friday night though despite my doubts, I joined him to try out the burger place and judge for myself.  Whoa, was I wrong.  While the burgers here (at least in my book) do not quite measure up to American standards (which just have a juiciness about them, a flavor, a mouthwatering quality that cannot be beat), they were pretty dang good.  I might even say they were great.  Just a step below an American burger.  I was impressed and thus, REALLY enjoyed this experience.  Yum.

The restaurant is called Hero's!  Click here to check out their website

I had the burger called the Popeye.  It was topped with spinach, mushrooms, blue cheese, lettuce....Mmmmm.

And tried my first BANANA beer.  Wow.  I did not even know this kind of beer exists.  Incredible.  Lightly sweet and delicious.

A thing of beauty.

And on Sunday (today), I enjoyed an incredible all-you-can-eat buffet, American style food mixed with Australian food, with my friend, Judith.  LOVE this place!!!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Fun Field Trip!

So, one of the greatest parts of my job is getting to see different parts of not only Frankfurt but also of Germany as we take field trips often.  This is way cool.  Free mini sightseeing tours essentially.  On Wednesday of this past week, we went to a little castle about an hour away from Frankfurt for the day (though I am not sure I personally would classify this as a castle...more like an old, fancy house).  I got some wonderful photos, especially of the kids, none of which I am allowed to post on my blog :-( but I can post a few of the other photos from the day without the kid's faces in them that I took, for your viewing pleasure!

With my good friend, Judith.

Our little tent area.

The "Castle."  Though it was certainly old, and beautiful, I would not have called this a castle myself ;-)  I felt that was a tad misleading haha.

The way cool playground!!!

More of the play area.

Exploring with the kids.

Awesome views....

Its like a patchwork quilt!  So pretty.

Loved this cafe!!!  So elegant and Parisian looking, but look how fun in the top left corner!!!

Yes, those are fake plastic bugs in the top left corner where the hole is.  Made to look as if they are spilling out of the ceiling!!  So cool ;-)

Snapshot of the inside of the "castle."

Delectable carrot cake <3

Monday, June 23, 2014

Best Foods I've Tasted In My Travels...

  1. Flying fish cakes and macaroni pie in Barbados!  If you look closely in the photo, you can see the fried flying fish on top of the rice, and the macaroni pie partially hidden underneath the roll.  SO yummy.  Macaroni pie is just as it sounds.  Essentially just macaroni and cheese but basically baked in the form of a pie!  And then the fried flying fish is breaded, covered in spices and fried.  Mmmmm.  Loved eating these two items in large proportion while I was there.
  2. Laduree Pastry in Paris.  This photo is the specific pastry I fell in love with.  A pistachio flavored cake, lightly sweet and soft, topped with mounds of fresh raspberries and strawberries.  YUM!!!  I loved it so much I had to go back immediately afterwards for another one.
  3. Bienenstich in Germany.  My favorite German dessert.  When you find a really good version, the cream is light, sweet and whipped, while the cake is moist and soft.  The almonds on top add just a slight crunch, giving it some extra texture and flavor dimension.
  4. French Onion Soup in Paris.  Delectable dinner item.  Light, yet cheesy and filling comfort food.
  5. Pumpkin Ravioli with cheese sauce in Florence, Italy.  This was one of my favorite dishes in Italy.  I ate it weekly during the 8 weeks I studied abroad there in college.  Hence why I came back 6 lbs heavier.  It also didn't hurt that the person often serving it to me was a stunning Italian male waiter.  
  6. Gnocchi with Gorgonzola cheese sauce in Rome, Italy.  I enjoyed this dish in Piazza Navona, as the sun set casting gold tones across the buildings throughout the piazza.  Stunning setting and an incredible, cheesy, filling dish.  The best.
  7. Pizza from Pizzeria ZaZa in Florence, Italy.  This pizza has four different parts.  Ham, Pesto, White truffle oil and Mushroom.  YUM!  Ate here often as well while living in Florence.
  8. Gelato in Italy.  Need I say more?  This is the country where ice cream is most famous and supposed to be the most delicious, in the world.  I concur with this verdict.
  9. Gingerbread Stars in Prague.  Like eating Christmas :-D 

  10. Bacon & cheese pasta along with the bacon, cream and chive soup as a starter, both from St. Paul Strube in Salzburg, Austria.  DELICIOUS.  Rich, filling and wonderful.

  11. Carrot Soup from Cafe Savoy in Prague.  Not only was this soup light, creamy and expertly flavored but the way it was served was impressive.  The bowl is placed in front of you with a tiny dollop of what you find out is whipped potatoes sitting in the middle, with a small piece of chicken resting on top.  The soup is poured into the bowl out of what looks like a silver tea kettle in a swirling, fun fashion.  And it tastes wonderful.
  12. In-n-Out Burger in L.A, California.  Yes, its a fast food burger.  You are probably thinking, how can it be that much different from McDonalds or Burger King?  Well, it is.  The burger comes with a "special sauce" on top, similar to Thousand Island dressing.  The meat is cooked just right and seasoned well.  The bun is toasted.  Toppings fresh.  The burger is incredible fast food burger.  Savory, totally satisfying, just the right amount of flavor and a hint of grease.  Many notches above other fast food burgers, by far.  I've even heard of people driving from out of state to get these bad boys ;-)

  13. Crepes in Paris.  Anyone who knows anything about Paris will be nodding their heads right about now, agreeing with this one.  Crepes in Paris are just better then Crepes anywhere else.  The dough is perfectly soft, moist and slightly stretchy.  The crepe is warm when folded together, the chocolate melted just so.  My personal favorite would either be: strawberries and nutella, or cinnamon and sugar.  Mmmmmm.

  14. Macaroni and cheese at S'Mac in NYC.  At this little eatery, one can build their own macaroni and cheese, adding whatever toppings suit their fancy.  Amazing.  Because Macaroni and Cheese is my FAVORITE food item of all time...I have devoted many images to this one ;-) And as you can imagine, upon discovering this place, my heart skipped more then one beat.

  15. Butterbeer.  Any real Harry Potter fan knows exactly what this is, and even more so, what it tastes like.  One can taste this concoction, created straight out of the books, in Harry Potter World which is located in Orlando, Florida.  You can drink it frozen or as a regular style drink.  Frozen is the way to go.  There is not actually any alcohol in this, its merely part of the name (like root beer).  The taste contains hints of butterscotch and notes of vanilla.  Lightly sweet and delicious.
  16. Annnnnnd a nod to my roots back home.  Tapas from Tapeo on Newbury Street in Boston.  This place is pricey but the tapas are DELISH!  And the atmosphere is great.  Sultry, lively, romantic and fun.