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Pastries in Paris

Bonsoir mon petit Croissants,

I come to you this evening with another belated blog update from my recent travels. One of the beautiful things about living in the UK is that we are just a few hours away from so many amazing European cities. You may have guessed from my greeting that the journey I am reminiscing about is France, Paris to be precise.

I took a casual day trip with two of my close girlfriends to the City of Love. We ventured out on the Metro and visited cafe’s, restaurants and Museums, including the famous Louvre where the Mona Lisa resides. We spent the evening enjoying some fine French cuisine in a restaurant near the Eiffel tower.

I always make it a priority to try street food in every country I visit, so I indulged in some freshly made churros after dinner… Close your eyes and imagine hot churros, straight from the oil, freshly rolled in a bed of sugar, and dipped into a side of chocolate-hazelnut spread. Heaven!

The day wouldn’t have been complete if we didn’t stop at an authentic Parisian bakery to pick up treats for the journey home. The sight of golden, buttery, flaky croissants smiling from behind the glass was a treat I couldn’t resist. (Quite frankly I’m grateful that there was glass between us, because if it hadn’t been for that restriction I would have gladly devoured everything in sight.) The plain croissant choice was easy, but then came the decision between almond croissants, baguettes, tarts, quiche and doughnuts- I must have let at least ten people pass in front of me before I was secure in my decision!  I eventually bought more pain au chocolat and danish pastries than I could carry. Tucking into those tantalizing delicacies on the train back to London was a beautiful end to an eventful day. And believe it or not I was even able to savour some until the next day! Pastries are one sweet treat I haven’t mastered yet, so I’ll be sure to add them to my list of bakes to conquer.

Au Revoir mon amies,

Tracey xoxo

Chocolat

Chocolat

Churros et Chocolat

Boulangerie

Patisseries

Quiche et Patisseries

Tour Eiffel

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How much is that Cake in the Window?

‘I’m on a relentless quest to discover cakes and bakes from far and wide. Where I glean my information from is limitless; who I inspire is unknown.’  

Being fortunate enough to travel to other countries I’ve been able to sift some ‘Cakespiration’ from other bakers. Whilst in NYC I literally stopped in my tracks at the sheer sight of the cakes. ‘They’ weren’t lying when they said that Americans do everything bigger!

 

On one of my many trips to iHop and Tim Hortons, I found myself stopping on route, nose pressed against the window, and camera in hand, snapping up photos of the cakes I was determined not to purchase! I stumbled across meringue pies, apple pies, cheesecakes, cupcakes, and just regular big ol’ cakes. I was mesmerized by the overall presentation of the cakes and the nonchalant-liberal use of candies and sprinkles!

 

 

The sight of these larger-than-life-cakes and bakes got me thinking that maybe it’s time to up the ante and step away from these two-tier cakes that I’ve become accustomed to. Perhaps it’s time for me to move onto three or four tied cakes? Presentation is one of the factors that I’m working on with my baking skills and these cakes in the window have fired me up to work harder. Enjoy drooling over the pics!

Love & Cupcakes,

Tracey xoxo

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I’m A Champion: Versatile Blogger Award!

Last month a fellow blog friend ThingsMyBellyLikes blessed me with one of the best gifts, a Versatile Blogger Award. There’s no refuting the fact that I was shocked, surprised, and excited all in one breath! As a relatively new blogger, with less than 20 followers (although I must say that I love and appreciate my faithful followers), I didn’t ever imagine receiving an award. Naturally I assumed that life-long bloggers with hundreds of followers received such honours, but lo’ and behold I am now among this elite category! (See post, Thursday Thoughts) Call it over-excited if you wish but I truly feel like a champion, hence this awesome song:

So the rules of this award state that I should thank the person who passed it on to me; nominate other bloggers that I admire and follow, and write 7 facts about myself. Here goes…

Huuuge thanks and a *virtual cupcake* goes to ThingsMyBellyLikes the awesome blogger who bestowed this medal on my blog. If I was allowed to pass the award straight back to you I would, because I love reading your blog posts and my belly genuinely rumbles at each post! Awesome writing, keep it up!

  1. Whiskey River BBQ {I recently discovered this blog and I immediately fell in love! It’s about a couple who have recently started their own catering company in the Whiskey soaked BBQ world!}
  2. Tiny Kitchen Stories {A rustic-style blog with mouth watering home-made recipes and desserts. It’s also a handy reference point for vegan and veggie meals.}
  3. Foodimentary {Known on the blogosphere as ‘A Food Lover’s Notebook’, with this blog you’ll never miss a national food day again. A blog full of interesting food facts and daily quotations.}
  4. The W Perspective {Breath taking photography from Penang, Malaysia. This photo-blog has the ability to make me say ‘wow’ each and every time.} 
  5. Without an H {Another favourite photo-blog: self-portrait photography from South East Asia, capturing the heart and soul of each community through a lens.} 
  6. The Middlest Sister {Have you ever laughed just by looking at a picture? Well then you’re in for a treat, this blog uses felt cut-outs to re-live the childhood of five sisters, through the eyes of the middlest sister. Classic and unique.}
  7. Garden Goat Quote {Another new blog that I presently follow, which I discovered through Freshly Pressed. This Super-Mom works a full-time job, blogs, and mothers nine children! Her style of writing is LOL funny and the truths of her daily life are somewhat enlightening on the joys and trials of Motherhood.}
  8. Good Humored {This blogger uses the type of humor that I thrive on, she’s sarcastic, blunt, and has the ability to turn an ordinary story into a masterpiece.}

Okay, so now 7 Interesting Things About Me (Is it ambitious for me to call these things ‘interesting’? *shrugs* You decide.)

  1. BIG SISTER I’m the eldest of three daughters. My sisters are my besties and I love my sisters more than ice-cream, sticky toffee pudding and chocolate fudge cake! That’s a lot of love.
  2. BLACK BRITISH I was born and raised in the UK but my cultural heritage is Ghanaian. The way I dress and speak is a reflection of the UK but my morals, cultural practices, and the way I cook stem from Ghana.
  3. FAITH My parents are Pastors so I’ve grown up in Church. I’ve been a Christian for 12yrs now and never looked back. My faith is more than a religion, it’s my life.
  4. CITY LIGHTS As a lover of food, fashion and all things sweet, it’s only right that I select my top 3 favourite Cities. In no particular order: Paris, London, NYC. Need I say more? (Umm seriously if you have to question this then drop me a comment, but I will be silently judging you from the other side of my laptop!)
  5. BRAINBOX Somehow I have a degree in English Literature and a Diploma in Law. People automatically ask if I’m smart. I don’t know, am I? I have a few certificates to say I’ve passed, but does that prove anything?
  6. LEGS 11 For the International readers among you, ‘legs 11’ is a British phrase for ladies who have long legs. I’m 6ft tall and this causes people to spew out word vomit such as, how are you so tall; why are you so tall; why wear heels if you’re already tall? My answers to the above consist of, Ask God, He made me this way; my Dad is tall (6″2) so I take after him; I paid for the shoes so why are you complaining/I’m not your wife or girlfriend so why are you trying to tell me what to wear!
  7. CAKE-A-HOLIC If you’ve read my Bio you’ll know that I have a slight obsession with cake. The store-bought kind doesn’t quite measure up to the fresh, warm, home-made delicacies that emerge out of my oven. They say ‘An apple a day keeps the Dentist away’, true true. But you should also remember that ‘A cake a day keeps emotions at bay’! Seriously, a well baked cake can turn any frown upside down :) I’m an addict and thats okay.

Love & Cupcakes,

Tracey xoxo  

Afternoon tea and Scones in Costa Blanca, Espana :)

Afternoon Tea and Scones in Costa Blanca, Espana :)