Vacation Recap + Return to the Kitchen

Paris 1

Remember how I used to blog on this little ditty called Cooking with Cakes?

And how you loved all the delicious, healthy, and easy recipes I made for ya?

Sometimes you’d laugh at my jokes, or roll your eyes at my snark.  There were pictures you would pin, links you would tweet, and recipes you would recreate.

It was all good fun, and all very tasty.  We smiled, we ate, we threw shade at others.

… Remember?!?!

Yes, it’s a hazy memory for me too.  But fear not, devoted readers!  Your chick is back in action.

heavenly croque monsieur courtesy of Le St. Germain bistro

heavenly croque monsieur courtesy of Le St. Germain bistro

As you’ll recall France & Spain were my vacation destinations, and man did they impress.  I won’t bore you with all the details (there’s a million) but I’ll give you the important highlights.

First up, Paris.

What more can I say – this city is magic!  Back for the first time in five years, I automatically remembered why I loved it so much.  Winding cobblestone streets, gorgeous architecture, a luscious, bucolic setting, and of course, the food.  I ate sooo much you guys.  I’m talking croissants on the daily… at least 3 of them.  And macaroons.  Many, many macaroons.  Liberal servings of foie gras, which I greedily devoured.  And wine.  Of course I drank too much wine.

foie gras + cheese + frankfurter baguette = americans eating in paris

foie gras + fromage + frankfurter baguette = americans eating in paris

But there was also lots of champagne, too.

You see a celebration was in order while in Paris – Dave & I got engaged. <3

It was the perfect setting for an engagement – on our hotel balcony, right before a night out on the town.  Our trip was exciting already, but this was the sparkling cherry on top!  I was completely surprised, utterly thrilled, and it set the tone for the best week of my life.

   Paris 3

So yes, Paris was a dream.  We biked all around the city, saw all the major landmarks (it was Dave’s first time), and ate and drank to our hearts content.  One of my favorite things that we did was a picnic at the Eiffel Tower.  We searched all of Paris to find the perfect meats, baguette, savory pastries, wine, and macaroons – it was a true foodie adventure!  It was also the perfect way to spend our last day, leisurely lounging and newly engaged 😉

picnic spread!

picnic spread!


best patisserie in the world

best patisserie in the world

After Paris came Spain, with pit stops in Ibiza and Majorca.  As you can imagine Ibiza was a one trick pony – We came, we danced, we conquered.   It was 48 hours of rockstar status, and at the end I couldn’t wait to get the hell out.  The clubs were outrageous and it was definitely a superior notch in my party-girrrl belt, but once is enough for a lifetime.  Trust me.

Finally we found our way to Majorca, which was absolutely gorgeous.  Crystal blue seas, beautiful beaches, mega-yacht marinas, and a gorgeous center city.  We lounged, we sailed, and we partied at beach clubs.  It was the perfect way to end our trip, location wise and food wise.

Because yes, TAPAS.

Mallorca 1

tapas glory

My god, they do not make the real thing here at home.  Authentic Spanish tapas are amaaaazing, and we couldn’t keep our hands off of them the entire time we were there.  I’m talking ham croquettes, dates wrapped in bacon, roasted goat cheese with a balsamic reduction – the works.

Mallorca 2


 Mallorca 3

We were lucky enough to stumble upon a cool tapas restaurant in Palma that served pay-as-you-go wine.  Basically there’s a selection of 50+ pressured wines, with the option of pouring yourself a taste, half glass, or full glass.  Simply insert your electronic card, make your selection, and you’re off to lala land.  At the end of the night you hand over your card and pay for what you racked up – pretty cool concept, huh?  Yes, it could be dangerous, but honestly the prices were so good and the selection so vast, we threw caution to the wind and went all out!

Mallorca 4   Mallorca 8

We ate like kings the entire time in Majorca, so it made sense that we capped off our trip with dinner at two star Michelin restaurant, Tristan.  Nestled in a mega-yacht marina, Tristan is the real deal.  Like, this was some Top Chef level food, to the point where neither of us really know what we ate, but we know it was flippin’ awesome.  There were lots of foamy consistencies, gamey meats, and ceviched ingredients.  It was confusing, yet delicious, and definitely some of the fanciest food I’ve ever enjoyed.

white cauliflower soup w/ chive gnocchi for me, carpaccio w/ white truffle for dave

white cauliflower soup w/ chive gnocchi for me, carpaccio w/ white truffle for dave


fancy/amazing shrimp carbonara

fancy/amazing shrimp carbonara

Start to finish it was an incredible trip, and I’d be lying if I said I’m a bit sad to be home.  But the good news is this – I’m finally back in the kitchen!  Yes, I know you’ve missed me.  And yes, there will be French & Spanish inspired dishes on the agenda!

In light of July 4th I’m going to hold off on new recipes for the week, but starting Monday we’ll be back to a normal routine.  So enjoy the BBQ’s, bikinis, and fireworks – I’ll see ya then 🙂