Travel and food go hand-in-hand — you’d be hard-pressed to find a traveller who didn’t love chowing down on new and exciting treats in each destination they visit. I for one am almost equally passionate about the two, but I think travel juuuuust takes the proverbial cake. From dairy delights in Paris to Italy’s best greens, read on to find some foodie favourites to add to your hunger hit list.
CHEESE IN PARIS
If you thought I would start this list in any other way, you obviously don’t know me at all. Paris has all kinds of flaky, sugary, happiness-inducing-but-stomach-expanding goodies, but there’s just something about snacking on a DIY cheese and cured meats platter under the Eiffel Tower with a bottle of rosé. I once sprinted from Gare du Nord to the nearest cheese shop 30 minutes before my train left just so I could stock up on my favourite cheeses to take back to London and it was #worthit.
Let’s get down to the recommendations! Brie de Meaux is the mother of all cheeses – reasonably strong but creamy AF and addictive. Splurge for the truffle version if you want to treat yourself. If you like lighter tastes then look for Brillat Savarin, the texture is almost fluffy and it’s very easy to eat if you’re not used to lots of cheese! Rochebaron is a soft blue that stole my heart in Paris last year, or check out the famous Roquefort if you’re a seasoned blue fan and don’t mind the strength. I don’t tend to waste tastebuds on hard cheeses (the inferior cheese, let’s be honest) BUT if I’m going for variety then Mimolette is my top pick. Paris is teeming with fromageries but I can personally vouch for Laurent Dubois, Androuetand L’Affineur Affiné. Bon appetit!
GRØD IN COPENHAGEN
The Scandinavian city’s foodie scene has exploded in recent years, with all kinds of local, international and dietary requirement-friendly stalls popping up at markets around the city centre and throughout the ‘burbs.
Did I once have six courses for dinner from various stalls at Papirøen street food market*? Perhaps I did, don’t judge. It was a hard choice this one, but I reckon the yummiest meal to try in Copenhagen is grød, Danish porridge, from the world’s first porridge bar at Torvehallerne market. Much better than the microwaved sachets you’re probably used to, Grød’s grød takes it up a couple of notches with toppings including fruit pieces, seeds, peanut butter and Danish skyr yoghurt. If you’re not a sweet tooth, you can opt for a savoury dahl or risotto. Thanks to my homegirl Charlotte for introducing me to this Danish delicacy <3
LAMB TAGINE AND TANJIA IN MARRAKECH
Yes, these are two different things. Tagine is the famous Moroccan couscous, meat and veggie dish you’ve probably all heard of, and tanjia is the lesser-known but more delicious (controversial opinion) meat dish that’s unique to Marrakech. Tanjia just pips out tagine for my favourite Moroccan meal because it’s often cooked in the ashes of the fire that heats the hammam (local spa). SO EFFICIENT. If there’s three things I like it’s travel, food and efficiency! Yes, I’m fun at parties and no, I have no idea how I’m still single.
Top tip: Ditch the manic medina in favour of some locally-loved back-street gems for the best foodie delights. Not so confident about where to go? Jump on a short tour with Marrakech Food Tours to get a taste of authentic local treats! We did the evening tour and were treated to lamb tanjia, olives, mint tea, almond butter and argan oil pancake, fresh fruit, sardine burgers and some more iiiinteresting delicacies. It was the perfect way to try a variety of meals without having to order a whole sheep’s head.
WIENER SCHNITZEL IN SALZBURG
Salzburg is famous for being home to the Von Trapps and Mozart, but you can’t leave the city without enjoying the most important meal in Austrian cuisine: Wiener Schnitzel. This oldie-but-goodie made a regular appearance on the family dinner table in my childhood so I was genuinely stoked for four days in Germany and Austria last year where I could order it twice a day without judgement. Mum’s schnitzel was always delicious, but when it’s cooked with love by an Austrian chef and partnered with a local beer in a cosy Old Town restaurant, it really warms the heart and tickles the taste buds. Side note: I passionately believe that breadcrumbs are underrated — any by-product of bread should be given the respect it deserves. Am I right?
PESTO PASTA IN CINQUE TERRE
Advice to ten-year-old me: When Mum says you need to eat more greens, ask her to buy you pesto. This mouth-watering sauce/spread/gift from the heavens may not be as healthy as a piece of broccoli but it’s the right colour, so semantics, your honour. Genoa actually boasts the title of inventing pesto, but you’re likely to find it on every menu throughout Northern Italy. Now THAT’S the kind of place I want to live.
I’ve specified the Cinque Terre here because there’s a stunning little restaurant with the most beautiful outlook over the coloured cliff-side houses in Manarola, and it offers an actual PESTO COURSE for an hour. You’ll hear about the history of pesto, pick your own basil, create the sauce and use it in your lunch. It’s called Nessun Dorma, and it’s the perfect place to sit and sip an Aperol Spritz while you snack on legitimate Ligurian pesto bruschetta à la Chef You.
BONUS: Here’s an insight into how my crazy brain works.
I think I have an actual problem with focus. When I typed ‘Nessun Dorma’ I vaguely remembered it being a song, so I Googled it and watched a Pavarotti YouTube video, recognised the song from a movie and spent twenty minutes trying to figure out where it was from. Realised it was Bend It Like Beckham, then watched the final scene from the movie on YouTube. If these six minutesdon’t give you the feels, you have no heart. What a fantastic movie and even better soundtrack! Anyway, two hours later and I’ve just finished the whole movie and now getting back to the blog. Please tell me I’m not the only one who struggled with staying on task?! If you have any tips on how to not act like a three-year-old child please comment below.
* As of 22 December 2017, Papirøen street food market in Copenhagen is closing. This sucks but Copenhagen has many more foodie spots to enjoy!