If you are following us regularly (yay!) then you know I love pastries. I mean.. I am Austrian so I’m quite sure I have some sort of genetic disposition to love cake. After all I did write an entire post only on the topic of Finnish pastries. Cake is amazing, but it can be a bit difficult to eat when you’re on the go. So what to do? Grab a handy pastry instead! I never travel anywhere without trying one of the local delicacies and if they come in a pastry shape, even better! For this post we asked fellow travel bloggers to tell us about sweet pastries they enjoyed on their travels around Europe. Read on if you need some inspiration, but spoiler alert: This will make you hungry <3
Maltese Honey Rings
One of the things we were most looking forward to before going to Malta was the food. We didn’t do a whole lot of research ahead, but we wandered the streets and supermarkets with open eyes. At some point we came across a bunch of interesting looking pastry rings. Intrigued by the shape we bought a pack which we immediately opened upon our return to the hotel. I took a bite and was transported to my early childhood. It is a crisp pastry filled with a kind of paste made of marmalade, sugar, lemon, oranges, treacle and a wide array of spices. And these spices truly stood out!
I later learned that these pastries which are actually known as Qagħaq tal-Għasel are mostly associated with Christmas (and carnival). These pastries have been eaten by the Maltese for several hundred years and it is not difficult to see why. They are delicious.. oh.. and they look fun!
Belgian Waffles by Addie Abroad
Belgium is basically a sweet food lover’s paradise, and one of the best ways to indulge your sweet tooth is with a waffle! There are generally two kinds of waffles to be found in Belgium: the Brussels and the Liege. The Liege Waffle is what’s best known as a street waffle. Tourists can be found piling them up with all sorts of toppings, but they’re traditionally eaten only with powdered sugar on top because the waffle itself is super sweet. If you’re in a touristy area (like near the Mannekin Pis is Brussels), you’ll be charged extra for toppings, so eating the waffle the traditional way is also the cheapest!
If you want to get all the toppings, then go for a Brussels Waffle, which doesn’t have as much sugar in it and is more light and fluffy as a result. These can generally be found in sit down restaurants and are also delicious!
Dutch Stroopwafel by Explore With Ecokats
On my first day at the University for a course in Rotterdam, a local course mate offered me this round, thin waffle like looking item during the coffee break. Inquisitively asking what the ingredients were, I took a bite into heaven. I absolutely loved the sweet taste of caramel and salty yet bitter taste of dough sandwiched together for that perfect thinness. I asked for more, clicked a picture of the packet and made sure I went to the supermarket the same day to stock them up. No guesses I stacked them up on my way back home to India as souvenirs from Netherlands for self, family and friends. I also make sure anybody going there knows about it and carries a packet back home as a sense of gratitude towards me! 😛
French Mont Blanc Pastry by My Own True North
Since 1903 Angelina has been a fixture among fashionable Parisians. The famed tea salon flirts with taste buds, sending senses reeling with joy from its signature dessert, the Mont-Blanc. A whipped cream, pureed chestnut, and meringue concoction, Mont-Blanc will surely have any demands for decadent delight satisfied. How does it taste? Like heaven! It tastes like heaven would taste. No need to venture to Chamonix when the prettiest little homage to the famous mountain can be your very own sweet.
Sharing this treat inside the Belle Epoque-styled tearoom a stone’s throw from Tuileries with a companion will help you feel less guilty when ordering the luxurious and rich hot chocolate. The chocolate is so creamy and glossy if you slow down enough to study the surface, you will see outlines and shadows from the overhead lights reflected on its gleaming surface. More than a tiny dollop of the fresh made whipped cream helps to extend the pleasure of this flavor. And if you’re dining solo, well then, Paris is the perfect place to channel your own embodiment of joie de vivre. You’ve surely been walking enough to make the indulgence worthy of your waistline. As the French say, mangez bien, riez souvent, aimez beaucoup!
Spanish Churros by Travel à la Tendelle
You’d be hard-pressed to find a person in the world who doesn’t like churros. Who can resist this doughy, crunchy goodness?! In Spain, churros are enjoyed at all hours of the day – as breakfast, as an afternoon snack, or a midnight munchie. They can be served in a proper plate or in a paper cone for you to take on the road. To up the sugar level, get churros con chocolate. You’d be served several churros with a big cup of hot chocolate to dip in.
Churros can be found in churrerías, which are either sit down cafés or little street stands. In Madrid, Los Artesanos 1902 Chocolate and Churrería Madrid 1883 are recommended. In Barcelona, visit Granja La Pallaresa or Xurreria Trevol.
Slovenian Bled Cake by Fill My Passport
Slovenia is the epitome of scenic, and hospitable. When arriving to Lake Bled I was prepared for a weekend lush with unmatched class and beauty; however, I never prepared my sweet tooth for a most surprising indulgence – Slovenia’s famous Bled Cake. This multi-layered dessert resembling a vanilla slice, originated in the city of Bled 60 years ago after numerous rounds of recipe testing. Since its release at the Bled Hotel, 12 million cakes have sold to residents and visitors alike.
What exactly is Bled Cake? You will be happy you asked. Take a base of filo pastry layers; add a very thick layer of the signature cream filling. Then top it off with whipped cream and a crown of butter dough for a sleek finish. The original recipe to this day is still top-secret and will not be divulged by the creators; however, should aspiring pastry chefs wish to give this classic a try, there are variations of the recipe available in Bled itself. It is a satisfying fusion of vanilla and butter, with the frothy texture of freshly whipped cream. You will be completely satisfied with this light desert that pair perfectly with a latte or cuppa tea.
Now, what do you think? How do these pastries sound to you? Which pastries or cakes have you discovered around Europe? Share your thoughts and pictures with us! Let’s stay in touch!