Saturday, June 25, 2016

Part THREE of Most Marvelous Food Moments of my Living in Europe

This cheese fondue bubbled as it was set in front of us.  The bread basket beckoned, soft white pillowy clouds of starchy goodness awaiting their being dipped in the thick, cheesy liquid.  We ate the entire thing.  Absolutely phenomenal.

While the cakes were sweet and delicious, this was more about the environment, which was totally swanky.  The hotel was glittering, plush and quiet.  Snow swirled down outside the windows as we sat, cozily sequestered inside over a fierce card game.

After one meal of cheese fondue, we were more then enthusiastic to have another one the next night after our thrilling day of skiing the Swiss Alps!!  This fondue was just as good, possibly better.  The cheese was thick and white, bubbling and wafting steam.  The bread was a mixture of light and dark which made for an enticing variety of taste texture.  One more soft and light while the other was a bit more dense and seeded.  The salad, crunchy, light, a refreshing side paired with the artery-clogging mind-blowing richness of the cheese.

While this appetizer looks ugly, the taste was far from it.  The bread was soft and yielding but with a crunchy crust.  The mushrooms were cooked to perfection and had been soaked in a coconut milk sauce, with the most subtle hint of sweetness, deliciously seasoned, so yummy.

This was our meal in Barcelona, Spain.  The potatoes (pictured below) were excellent.  The sauce, something like a spicy mayonnaise aioli, was delectable, zesty, and super tasty when paired with the potatoes which had a slight kick to them.

Oh my gosh, these drinks were good.  Especially the middle one.  They are from a vegan restaurant in Barcelona called Flax & Kale.  The middle drink was made with almond milk, cinnamon, vanilla, cardamom, coconut and nutmeg.  It was light, sweet and DELICIOUS.

Raw vegan carrot cake.  Dense, sweet, sweet, surprisingly yummy.

Pumpkin ravioli topped with tomatoes, in a light sauce.

Card sharks enjoying a competitive game with sides of cucumber and cheese sandwiches, vegetable quiche and apple cinnamon cupcakes.  The perfect afternoon.

"Bread of the Gods," or Pao de Deus, in Lisbon, Portugal.  Hands down, one of the best desserts I have ever eaten in my life.

Handmade chocolates at a little street market in Barcelona.

This seafood dinner was an event in itself.  The restaurant was PACKED.  People rushing this way and that.  The servers, hurried, serious, but allowing an occasional burst of animated chatter and a momentary warm smile with a patron to punctuate their rushing around, their arms so loaded with trays one couldn't help but marvel and watch.  The seafood was dripping with butter, simply seasoned, delicious.  The garlic bread was addictive.  The crust was crisp, the bread buttery, melting in ones mouth.  The fish was flaky and perfectly cooked.

Another seafood dish, white fish cooked in rice, and a side of garlic shrimp.  Simple but excellent.  We LOVED this meal.

Loving Lisbon!!!

Handmade chocolates <3

Vegan carrot cake and green tea.  Mmmmmm.

Poffertjes in Amsterdam.  These were like little pillows of dough.  Sweet, they literally melted in your mouth, warm, buttery, the dough was light as air, SO yummy.

LOVED this dinner, with friends at Jackson Dubois in Amsterdam.  The concept is street foods from all over the world, served tapas style as small dishes.  So much fun and so tasty!!!  I would highly recommend this place.

Awesome brunch in Amsterdam.  And the brownie?  Gluten free, sugar free, dairy free. And totally shockingly?  One of the best brownies I have ever had in my life, no joke.  One never would have known it wasn't a regular brownie.  It was fudgy, rich, chocolatey, SO delicious.

Way cool dessert display in Amsterdam.

I have never been a big honey person, but this honey I tried in Bad Orb, Germany??? WHOA.  Smooth, super sweet, really, really good.

One of my favorites ever.  Iimori in Frankfurt, for their green tea torte cake.

In my sugar-free eating explorations, this is one of the recipes I loved the most.  Banana Carrot Pancakes, oh man, so tasty.

Sugar free pumpkin pie.  Another tasty one!!

More of that phenomenal honey I discovered in Bad Orb, Germany.  Before, honey excited me about as much as a bland salad, or a cup of plain yogurt.  After trying this honey though, it was like discovering Reese's peanut butter eggs for the first time.  Glorious.

Cinnamon oatmeal pancakes, homemade by me :-D 

One of the most famous sweet shops in all of Paris, as well as one of the older tea salons in the city.  Super swanky.

Pastries from Laduree.

Dinner in Piazza Navona, Rome.  God, the ambiance here alone is enough to make eating here worth it on any summer evening.  The sun casts gold tones across the buildings, splattering the square with a warm glow.  The fountains bubble.  Accordion musicians play.  The smells of pasta, fish and wine float through the air.  The square is bustling with activity.  Romantic revelers wander, artists selling their wares, families searching for dinner after a long day of sightseeing.

Salmon gnocchi, this was superb.

An awesome meal in Paris.  I don't know what this chicken was seasoned in, what was in the sauce, but it was super delicious.

These were crisps made of honey, sandwiched with thick pastry cream.  Light, sweet and fruity.

Enjoying Crepes in Paris.

Pistachio raspberry torte.  This was to die for.

Picnic on the outskirts of Paris.  Some blue cheese, baguette, fruit and pastries.  Mmmmm.

And two more AWESOME meals in Italy.

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