Italian Desserts you MUST Try

Italian Desserts you MUST Try

Italian cuisine is renowed for its great variety, not only when it comes to mains but also when it comes to desserts! Those with a sweet tooth will know that no meal is complete with dessert and there certainly is no better way to round off a hearty Italian meal than with some mouth-watering desserts!

Here are some Italian desserts you will want to try when you visit Italy!

1. Panna Cotta

If you love your pudding, you will love panna cotta too. This Italian classic features on the menus of most Italian eateries so it will be hard to miss an opportunity to test it. Although the traditional panna cotta calls for a caramel sauce, you will often find it served with strawberry or chocoate sauce. The more outlandish amongst you may want to push the boat out and try cinnamon or aniseed!

2. Tiramisu

There are so many variations of this well-loved dessert – it can be a cake or served in a cup, wine glass and even a shot glass! Who said coffee is just for mornings?

3. Cannoli

Cannoli is a Sicilian pastry dessert with a sweet and creamy ricotta filling. While cannoli may have originated in Sicily, the Arabs were the ones who came up with this classic when they dominated Sicily region. 

4. Zabaglione

This light custard dessert typically contains Marsala wine, a sweet wine produced in the Marsala region of Sicily. If you like your desserts with a hint of alcohol, you will not be disappointed with a serving of zabaglione!

5. Ricotta pie

Ricotta pie is arguably an Italian take on cheesecake, albeit a lighter and less sweet version so do not expect it to taste like the rich and sinful cheesecakes you have had before. Nevertheless, lovers of cheesecake should still be open to trying out something different – you may well love it!

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Foodie Guide to an Indulgence at Europe’s Christmas Markets

Foodie Guide to an Indulgence at Europe's Christmas Markets

Ho ho ho! The year-end festive period sees Christmas markets sprouting all across Europe. These markets are immensely popular with both locals and travellers alike; filled with stalls selling handmade Christmas souvenirs and an abundance of treats, they are the perfect spots to shop for gifts for your loved ones and to grab a bite. Check out our guick foodie guide to make sure you don't miss out on the best treats in the markets!

1. Mulled Wine

Downing a warm beverage is especially comforting during the cold season. Stick to an all-time favourite at Christmas markets – mulled wine. Those who love their booze will not be able to resist this spiced drink.

2. Crepe

Satisfy your sweet tooth with piping hot crepes made on the spot. You will probably discern the delightful aroma of crepes wafting in the air before you spot a stall selling this treat. Most stalls offer a variety of sweet toppings, so go ahead and create a flavourful treat for yourself. Those without a sweet tooth will not be denied the joy of consuming this delectable treat – simply opt for a selection of savoury toppings to be loaded upon your crepe. 

3. Bratwurst

Delicious either fried or grilled, the bratwurst is a Christmas market staple not to be missed! It comes as no surprise that bratwurst is typically found in Germany's Christmas markets, as well as German-inspired Christmas markets across Europe as sausages are icons of German cuisine. At certain bratwurst stalls, you can ask for fries to go along with your sausage roll. It is vacation time after all, so do not hold back on indulging in decadent treats!

4. Apple Strudel

Warm and sweet, a serving of apple strudel drizzled with creamy vanilla sauce is the perfect antidote to combat winter blues. This is a must-eat treat for all dessert lovers!

5. Potato Pancakes

If you find yourself craving savoury, deep-fried fare, keep your eyes peeled for stalls selling potato pancakes. This German street food dish is usually served with applesauce, as the sweetness of the sauce balances out the salty flavours of the pancakes. Go for the sour cream dip if you are not a fan of contrasting sweet-and-salty flavours in a single dish. 

6. Gingerbread Cookies

No Christmas feast is complete without some spicy gingerbread cookies! You will easily spot these colourful treats from afar when you stroll through the market. Heartwarming messages and greetings are commonly writing in vibrantly-coloured icing on this cookie, making them ideal as gifts for your loved ones. Make sure you get some extra cookies, for you will not be able to resist biting into one right away!


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Travellers Tips: How to Eat on a Budget in Europe

Travellers Tips: How to Eat on a Budget in Europe

Dining on the cheap does not have to be a stretch for budget travellers in Europe, for the region presents an array of inexpensive dining options. 

Here's how you can be a money-savvy foodie during your sojourns: 

  • Do Your Food Shopping at Bakeries and Sandwich Shops

Bakeries and sandwich shops are great spots to grab a quick and cheap meal for your breakfast and lunch. In most stores, you will find an array of sandwiches, pizzas and local eats commonly consumed within the region. For example, you are likely to come across a wide selection of croque-monsieur sandwiches in France, or chance upon an array of pizzas and pastas in Italy. If in doubt, just follow the lunch crowds, and they are likely to lead you to an eatery that offers hearty bites at affordable prices.  

  • Cook Your Own Meals

Rent an apartment or reside in a guesthouse that provides cooking facilities. In this manner, you can whip up a feast of delights at a fraction of the price that you would be paying if you dine in a restaurant. 

The search for fresh ingredients to make your meal is not a difficult one, for Europe is home to a wide array of outdoor markets. Exploring these markets will be a joy for foodies, for the market is often buzzing with a vibrant vibe, filled with a myriad of cheerful colours, lively chatter and diverse tastes. Travellers are likely to find a variety of fresh produce, as well as freshly-baked breads, cheeses and spreads – items perfect for a satisfying breakfast or a delicious picnic lunch outdoors. 

  • Savour the Unique Flavours of Street Eats

Mhmmm street food!

Apart from being cheap eats, street food also allows travellers to savour local flavours that are unique to each country. During their sojourns, Europe travellers will find a multitude of stores selling crisp pizzas in Italy, flavourful souvlaki in Greece, piping hot crepes in France and tasty bratwurst in Germany. You cannot go wrong by following the crowds – be sure to make a beeline for stalls with a lively buzz and a queue snaking around it. 

  • Restaurants: Dine Where the Locals Eat

Make each and every meal at a restaurant count by getting the best bang for your bucks when you dine outdoors. The key to doing so is to follow the locals. Make your way to off-the-beaten-track joints that are not frequented by tourists. Venture a few streets away from tourist attractions, or explore the streets close to residential neighbourhoods, and you are likely to find a selection of restaurants that the locals head to. 

In most instances, the menu is a good indicator – restaurants with menus written in multiple languages are likely to be touristy joints that you would want to avoid. 

  • Eat with the Locals

Eating can offer a unqiue travel experience of its own…particularly when you are eating with the locals, in the comforts of their cosy homes! 

These fun-filled experiences do not cost an arm and leg. We have a handpicked selection of budget-friendly dining experiences listed below:  

Tagliatelle alla Bolognese with Giorgia

An Original Taste of Italy with Giorgia

Tasty Crescentine with Giorgia

A Traditional Dinner with Andrea

Savour Tuscan Flavours with Lilia

International Breakfast with Emma

A Picnic by the Sea with Francesca

A Hearty Breakfast with Cristina

All-You-Can-Buffet with Cristina

Eat What You Like with Magherita

Asian Fusion Flavours with Poom

Mediterranean Magnificence with Steven

Brazilian Delights with Erika

Swiss Fondue with Erika

Image credits: Flickr, La Pensione Hotel, Land of Travel

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5 Budget Travel Blogs For Europe Travellers

5 Budget Travel Blogs For Europe Travellers

Traveling on a budget in Europe is not an impossible feat, especially when you have access to tons of travel advice and tips from those who have been there and done it.

We brought together top budget travel bloggers who constantly share their useful tips with European travellers.

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Who: Kash Bhattacharya

Europe travelers who are still in search of hostel accommodation for their upcoming vacation to Europe should not miss out on reading the BudgetTraveller, for they will find a useful section containing reviews on luxury hostels in destinations across Europe.

Holidaymakers will also discover a wide selection of posts related to traveling in Europe. Be sure to check out entertaining posts to find out how you can backpack in style across England over a duration of two weeks, embark on a self-guided walking tour of beautful Edinburgh or discover an array of cheap eats in Madrid.

Nomadic Matt

Who: Nomadic Matt

A trip to Costa Rica got travel blogger Nomadic Matt smitten with wanderlust. It was not until his travel trip to Thailand, where he encountered a group of backpackers, that led him towards making the life-changing decision of quitting his job to backpack around the world.

Avid travelers perusing his blog will find travel guide content on a whooping 59 locations. The section on Europe is particularly comprehensive and engaging, with travel tips related to costs, food, accommodation, travel attractions, and activities being presented in an informative and readable format.

Travelling Buzz

Who: Maria Stoyanova

Hailing from Bulgaria, twenty three year old Maria Stoyanova fuses her passion for travel and writing with her blog, Travelling Buzz. Focusing on destinations within Europe, she writes about her personal travel experiences and offers tips on must-see places and interesting travel activities in destinations such as Athens, Paris, London and other European cities.

Readers will also chance upon an in-depth guide about food, travel tips and culture of her home country, Bulgaria.

The Savvy Backpacker

Who: James, Susan, and Henry

The faces behind The Savvy Backpacker are a husband-and-wife team, James and Susan, as well as adorable Henry, their fluffy Maltipoo dog.

The blog was conceived after James returned from his backpacking trips abroad, and was constantly sought for backpacking travel advice from his friends. This gave him the idea of creating an informative site about backpacking in Europe, particularly as he had found it difficult to find well-research content on websites for backpacker travelers while doing his own research for his travel trips.

Browse through The Savvy Backpacker, and you will find a plethora of practical information to help backpackers through the entire process of planning for their travel trip. Travelers can start off by reading information under the planning and packing categories to help them define and plan their travel budget, make transport arrangements and ensure that they bring along the right clothing for their trip.

Next on the list is securing accommodations, and finally, gaining a wealth of useful travel information, such as implementing sightseeing strategies and discovering how to avoid tourist scams in Europe.

Young Adventuress

Who: Liz Carlson

After getting her first taste of travel at the tender age of sixteen, Liz has since ventured on to explore more than forty countries. Travelers who have included Spain in their list of places-to-visit will be delighted to know that Liz offers a comprehensive guide to traveling in Spain, as well as an intriguing Spain 101 providing fascinating insights into the food and culture of the locals on her blog.

Vacation makers itching to explore Europe will find a series of blog posts offering travel tips for destinations within the region. Be sure to browse through her postcards articles – filled with amazing pictures and nuggets of travel information, these posts are an interesting way for readers to gain quick insights into new travel destinations.

Image credits: Bridges and Balloons, SleevesUp Productions, Travelling Buzz, Pinkpangea, Alumnae Mtholyoke

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