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Around the World in 80 Plates: Biscotti, Italy 1/80

Biscotti, the stuff Italian dreams are made of, are simple to make twice-baked cookies and are sure to impress your friends.

On a trip to Italy last year, I was given a version of this recipe from Rosana at Agriturismo i Fuochi near Cortona and it was the best souvenir I could have asked for.

As long as you add flavour combinations you love and you keep a close eye on them in the oven, this recipe is a keeper.
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There aren’t enough meals in the day

Two years ago when I started travelling, I was focused on museums, history and whatever else my trusty guidebook said was important. I spent most of my time on the tourist trail.

It was good. It was interesting. But I wasn’t getting the real feel for the place. I remembered each city by what I saw, not what I experienced.

Eventually, that turned into hanging out with new friends through CouchSurfing and I would remember the cities by what I did.

Now, I remember them by what I eat.
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Turkish foods to cook at home

Turkey is full of delicious food. You can find Manti, dumplings served in both a red and cream sauce; Lahmacun, a pizza-style dish; and Menemen, spicy scrambled eggs. Everything is delicious and full of flavour.

If you want a snack, you can pick up a simit, similar to a bagel. Hummus is a tasty chickpea spread.

Craving something sweet? Get some lokum, the flavoured jelly sweet commonly called Turkish Delight.

Thirsty? Turkish tea and coffee are everywhere.

It would be difficult to be hungry in Turkey. Even if you don’t want to cook, the markets offer plenty of fruits, vegetables and freshly squeezed juices. While there are many choices, some of my favourites can be found easily and can be made after returning home.
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Travelling through food in Vancouver

I recently returned from a 4-day trip to Vancouver, British Columbia. For a $13 Amtrak ticket, it couldn’t be passed up. Once I decided to go, I discovered my Dutch CouchSurfing host from Amsterdam last year had just moved there, a Chinese surfer I met in Bellingham could host me and there were a few CouchSurfing meetings organized for the Cherry Blossom Festival and Vancouver’s 125th Birthday Celebrations! I knew the four days would be packed with CouchSurfing activities, but in the end, the focus was all on food.
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Chocolate, waffles and fries! Oh my!

If you want to gain weight and enjoy doing it, head to Belgium. The country’s street food is amazing. Turn any corner in a city center in the country and you’ll likely find a frietkoten (fry shack) take-away window, a waffle cart or a chocolate shop. Or, if you’re lucky, all three! The culinary wonders of Belgium have reached far and wide. Pomme frites (fried potatoes) are a mainstay in North American restaurants, waffles are a common breakfast food and chocolate… well… chocolate is chocolate and needs no words to describe its powers in the world. Sadly, all three have been commercialized in their worldwide travels and are now sold frozen, fattier and sweeter and are not as authentic as they should be. Yes, I’m telling you frozen fries, frozen waffles and sugary chocolate just don’t cut it after savoring the best of each in Belgium.
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All you need is love… or wine, cheese and a good picnic spot

The Beatles said all you need is love. Well, they should take a lesson from the French. Yes, love is one option but good wine, decadent cheese and prime picnic spots are another way to go. France’s couples and singles really know how to live the good life. Whether they’re eating alone or in a rush (very rarely on-the-go), meals aren’t wasted on crappy food and when they drink something, they enjoy the hell out of it. Many times in France, my palate was blown away in ways I had never experienced in picnic locations straight from a postcard.
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