Category Archives: memorable eats

Memorable Eats: Pastéis de nata / Pastéis de Belém

If you’d told me two weeks ago that my knees would go weak over an egg tart pastry, I would have laughed.But after trying Portugal’s signature sweet, I think it was probably a good thing we chose to take a seat at a table instead of ordering from the outdoor counter service.

Pastéis de Belém – the volume of pastries was almost unbelievable!

I wasn’t sure what to expect when our Lisbon friend took us to try them. But a pastel de nata packs a lot of yum in a cute little package: a sweet, flaky pastry cup, filled with egg custard, and baked to perfection.

Pastéis de nata have been around since the 18th century. They were created by Portuguese monks, looking for a use for all of the egg yolks left over after they’d used egg whites to starch their laundry. And thus a Portuguese tradition was born. In 1837 the recipe was sold to a family whose descendants continue to run Lisbon’s Pastéis de Belém to this day.

A little cinnamon and powdered sugar on top, a light-roasted baca (a Portuguese espresso) on the side, and you have yourself the perfect afternoon treat.

We really enjoyed the fresh-made pastries at their original home, Pastéis de Belém in Lisbon, as well as those we had at local pastry shops in Porto.

 

Pastéis de Belém
R. Belém 84-92
1300-085 Lisboa, Portugal

Have you heard about Tastemade?

We are excited to announce that we are participating in a fairly new site, Tastemade.

 

Tastemade is a video community created to “connect the world through food.” (https://m.facebook.com/tastemade/about)
We think it is a great way to check out the best of a city’s eats before a trip. And we also saw it as a great way to share what we discover around Norway.

 

Our first video highlights our recent visit to Coffeeberry.

https://www.tastemade.com/places/v/VN4p7P2tQb-bThx1daucwA

To learn more and to follow along with our Tastemade adventures, visit: https://www.tastemade.com/@notesfromnorge

Memorable Eats: Dutch Herring

Anytime we travel, we want to try at least one or two local foods. When we were in Amsterdam this year, we had a taste of several new things.The most memorable was probably the herring.

And not only was the fish memorable, but the photos we took are some I will likely never forget!

Here is the herring stand. They are very easy to find all over the city.

Here is the fish.

And while three of us really enjoyed it, I think you can see from this photo that it was not something Daniel cares to try again.

But he was a champ. Even though I thought he was possibly going to throw up, he managed to chew it up and swallow it!

 

Memorable Eats: The Familiar

It’s funny, the things that we get excited about when living overseas. Often it comes in the form of things we did not really indulge in when we lived in the states. But there is just something comforting about the familiar.Over the past couple of years, we’ve had several chances to enjoy some foods that gave us just a taste of our home country.

And sometimes that can provide just what you need to combat a bit of homesickness.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Memorable Eats: Hot Chocolate like you wouldn’t believe!

Sometimes as you travel, or maybe when you’re just taking a stroll around the corner, you come across interesting an usual food, or candies, or drinks. Occasionally they are off-the wall terrible, and then at other times they are great.In this first entry of a new blog series, Memorable Eats, I am sharing about something unusual that could probably fall into the categories of food. AND candies. AND drinks. Let me introduce you to drinkable chocolate.

If you are every in Poland, put this place on your must-see list: E. Wedel Chocolate Lounge

It is a restaurant. A confectionery.  A cafe. And so much more.

When we were visiting friends and colleagues in Warsaw, one of them mentioned stopping by a Wedel Cafe for hot chocolate. Sounded like a great idea to us!

And we are so glad we went. Merely calling the drink that Wedel serves a hot chocolate is doing it a real disservice. They call it drinking chocolate. And that is much more accurate.

I’ve had good hot chocolate in my life. Maybe even great every now and then. But what we had in Warsaw went way beyond that.

Wedel knows chocolate, and they excel when it comes to a drinkable chocolate. Drinking chocolate is much thicker than hot chocolate. It literally looks and tastes like someone took fine chocolate and melted it into a cup. Yeah, amazing.

There were so many varieties on the menu, so Zack and I decided to share the tasting trio. An excellent choice.

Three small cups of drinking chocolate: dessert, milk, and white chocolate. Each was delicious, but I think the dessert chocolate was our favorite!

We also shared the dessert tasting trio.

Another excellent choice, especially when there were so many delicious options. It would have been almost impossible to only choose one!

The boys enjoyed their drinking chocolate as well, complete with whipped cream and chocolate candies.

There are Wedel Chocolate bars throughout Poland – so if you are ever there, you definitely need to stop in!

Norwegian food: Kebab

Yeah, yeah. It’s really more of a mediterranean or Middle Eastern food. But I don’t think it is possible to drive through a city in Norway – regardless of the size – and not find at least one kebab restaurant. It is like the national fast food of this country.It is also one of the cheaper restaurant options. It’s usually available fairly quickly (prepared to order, but doesn’t take long), and typically at a counter service establishment. It isn’t the healthiest food, but from time to time I find I must indulge! The meat is typically lamb, but many restaurants offer a chicken option, as well as some beef or blend options.


The lamb is often cooked on a large upright spit. In that case, the meat is shaved from the spit. At other restaurants it is chopped.

Daniel prefers kebab i pita: a warm pita filled with lettuce, meat, and other toppings like onions, corn, tomatoes, cucumber and sauce. We all like kebab tallerken as well. It has all the stuff you would find in a pita, but spread over a bed of French fries.

Kebab
(noun) Kebab.

Used in a sentence
Det er min mening at man ikke har vært i Norge før man har prøvd kebab.
(It is my opinion that you haven’t been to Norway until you’ve tried kebab.)


Related Words
kjøtt – meat
tallerken – plate/platter
salat – lettuce
løk – onion
agurk – cucumber
sterk – spicy

[Not] Norwegian food: Pop Tarts

Our boys love Pop Tarts. And I have to admit, they are a bit of a guilty pleasure for me as well.

Growing up, you could almost always find them in our pantry. Okay, not really. What we typically had were generic ‘Toaster Pastries’. You know, the store brand knock-off that came without frosting, and often with at least one major fracture, if not totally crumbled. Yeah yeah, I gripe, but we certainly ate them!

I know the boys enjoy them, but a couple of things keep us from having many on hand. First is the artificial stuff. I am really trying to reduce the amount of artificial stuff we eat. I won’t totally eliminate it, but less is better, right?

But the bigger reason is the price. I’ve only found one store in Norway that carries them. And since they are an import item, they come with the hefty price tag of around $10-11 per 8-count box. So I won’t be picking them up anytime soon. Yeah, there are some things you will pay a high price for to have a taste of home. [Like white cheese jalapeño dip – which I have yet to find anywhere.] But Pop Tarts are not on that list!

We are grateful to friends and family who’ve brought Pop Tarts to the boys when they’ve visited us. The boys always ration them out, saving them for weekends and special days. But I now have a solution that keeps my boys happy, saves me money, and keeps the artificial stuff and preservatives out of their tummies!

I attempted homemade strawberry Pop Tarts yesterday. And while I still need to perfect the process, I am quite pleased with how the first batch turned out. Like the generic wannabes, they lack frosting. But unlike any of the boxed treats, they have nothing fake and I can feel a little better about them!

The boys each had one with their breakfast this morning. No mention of no frosting, only “wow, these taste like Pop Tarts!”

Thanks to the Smitten Kitchen – fantastic recipe that does not call for any ingredients that are unavailable in Norway!! You can find the recipe HERE.

A Passion… for Pizza!

Deep-dish pizza – delicious!

On most any Friday evening you can find us at home, eating pizza and watching a movie. It’s become somewhat of a tradition for Familie Dove.

We often give the boys the choice: pick up Grandis from the grocery store (Grandiosa, Norway’s most popular frozen pizza), get takeout from Balkan (our favorite to-go pizza in Sandefjord), or homemade. And most Fridays, they opt for one made from scratch.

Last night, we tried something new. Instead of our traditional rectangular pizza, we experimented with Chicago-style deep dish pizza. And while the boys still prefer the traditional style, Zack and I loved this new version!

I found the recipe HERE. I followed it for the most part. Ground sausage isn’t something I’ve been able to find in Norway, so I improvised with ground chicken and pizza seasoning (improvise is a word I often use when attempting American recipes here!). And I used pizza cheese for both layers of cheese, instead of the final parmesan layer. This was my first experience doing something like this with a springform pan, and I was very pleased with the results – well, once Zack managed to pry the sides off the pan!

Do you make homemade pizza? What type does your family prefer? What are your favorite toppings?

Our typical homemade pizza
No matter the season – we think pizza is good any time of year!
Sometimes we get a little creative – this was
a salmon & pesto pizza

 

From time to time, we go out for pizza.
Pizza almost always produces smiles!