Traveling can work up quite an appetite, and can certainly put a strain on your sweet tooth. After wandering the halls of a great art museum or traversing the cobblestones of a small medieval town, we can understand if you have got a pretty fierce hankering for something sweet. No matter where you are, there’s a good chance that there is a local treat to calm your nerves, and also give you some insight into the local culture.
From the land that brought the delicate and dynamic paintings of the impressionists, comes the Macarons.
At first glance the macaron looks to airy and dainty to be a force of a cookie, but one bite and you fall into heaven. Gentle almond flavor paired with a texture you never want to leave is enough to make anyone swoon, or simply fall in love with Paris. Just one or two of this tasty treat and you’ll need a break from the richness.
They’ll put you back more euro than you expect, but they are absolutely worth it!
Pastel de Nata
You’ll have to head to Portugal for these tasty egg tart pastries. If you wander the streets of Lisbon, you’ll find them in the windows of any bake shop or even entire stores dedicated just to the pastel. It’s a pastry dough with an egg custard filling.
They look simple enough, but making a pastel to perfection is anything but. Layers of carefully buttered dough are folded into a delicate crust and the egg custard requires incredibly precise temperatures in order to perfect its consistency.
It is a treat enjoyed by locals and tourists alike, so go ahead and take a bite…or three.
Every night in Italy must end with a gelato. Its ice cream’s more mature and distinguished older sibling.
Somehow, even on a street corner in Venice, having a gelato seems a whole lot more sophisticated than just a regular ice cream.
Try and find the places that make the gelato themselves, you’d be surprised just how many places do that. There are actually very few gelato chain stores, most are owned and operated independently and can put out quite a quality product.
Majorcian Ice Cream
When it comes to ice cream, the Majorcians have won. Only one cafe on the entire island can sell you the authentic frozen treat, but it’s worth going just for this.
They won’t tell you exactly how it’s done, but the result is the creamiest, sweetest and most delicious ice cream you’ve ever had in your life. During the summer months they have a wider selection of flavors, but even in the offseason you should try both the chocolate and the strawberry.
You will not regret this.
Churros con Chocolate
Churros are complicated – are they a dish or a desert? For locals in the Castile region of Spain, they are often a meal all by themselves.
Usually, for breakfast, or an afternoon snack, churros are a way to whet the appetite with something delicious. For most foreigners coming in, it looks like everyone is just eating donuts and pudding for breakfast.
When they say “chocolate” (in Barcelona and the rest of the Catalonia region, it may be spelled “xocolate”) they mean a warm, thick chocolate pudding that is perfect for dipping.
Only around the holidays will you find this treat in Britain. It’s a traditional cake that you’ll find in almost every home.
They’ll have picked up the distinctive cardboard boxes from Marks and Spencers or their other favorite supermarkets, and every child will be looking forward to the hot cake filled with chocolate or toffee which is doused in liquor and lit on fire. Other traditional ingredients include currants, orange, and sultanas. Sounds like a great way to celebrate Christmas!