Celebrations International Travel Blog

Archive for the ‘recipes’ Category

I received this recipe in a holiday greeting from Viking River Cruises, and it looks so good I had to share it!

Happy Holidays and enjoy: 

Viking River Cruises' Sachertorte

The year was 1832, and the Austrian minister of foreign affairs, Prince Metternich, ordered his court’s kitchen to create a special dessert for his high-ranking guests. But the head chef of his household was ill that day, so the task fell to his 16-year-old apprentice, Franz Sacher. Fortunately, the delicious chocolate cake he developed on the spot was a rousing success! Herr Sacher went on to become a famous confectioner. In 1876 his son Eduard opened the Hotel Sacher in Vienna, where the treat has been served to honored guests ever since.One of the best things about traveling with Viking River Cruises is the opportunity to sample delicious local cuisine. Here is a recipe from Austria—Sachertorte (pronounced “SOCCER tort”). While the dessert is found in many of Vienna’s coffeehouses, it can also be sampled on many of Viking River Cruises‘ ships.

Cake Ingredients
5 oz. softened butter
A half cup sifted powdered sugar
8 egg yolks
8 egg whites
5 oz. bittersweet chocolate
Two-thirds cup of flour
A half cup sugar
2 tablespoons apricot jam

Glaze Ingredients
8 oz. bittersweet chocolate
2 tablespoons butter

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375°F. Cream together butter and powdered sugar. Add 1 egg yolk at a time, mixing until creamy. Melt the 5 oz. bittersweet chocolate in a double boiler or microwave; gradually add to the creamed mixture. Fold in flour. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites and sugar until stiff. Fold into chocolate mixture. Pour batter into a lined 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 50-65 minutes. Remove from pan and cool on a wire rack. Heat apricot jam and smooth over entire torte, including the sides. For glaze, melt the 8 oz. bittersweet chocolate with butter and frost the cake. Serve with whipped cream.

Makes 8-10 servings.

Gourmeted.com‘s featured Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna looks like it’s ready for the best Italian grandma’s Sunday dinner table!

Lasagna of Emilia-Romagna from Gourmeted.com

Lasagna of Emilia-Romagna from Gourmeted.com

Not only does this look delicious, but Joy from Gourmeted.com includes the recipe with instructions, including many pictures of her first attempt at lasagna-making.  What a wonderful first lasagna!

I know there are many wonderful cooks and culinary enthusiasts out there who share this passion for great food and excellence in our kitchens.  Follow your passions and indulge in a custom culinary tour to Italy, where you can take hands-on cooking classes, visit local markets with chefs, tour vineyards, taste wines, and do just about anything else you want to satisfy your culinary pleasures and curiosity.  Contact us to start planning your custom tour today!

Celebrations International Travel...Celebrating Life Through Travel

We are pleased to announce that Celebrations International Travel is a new sponsor featured on Gourmeted.com.   Working in conjuction with Gourmeted.com‘s site owner Joy Jose, we look forward to a tasty and adventuresome exchange of ideas and experiences!

Celebrations International Culinary Travel Banner

We have invited Joy to share some of her culinary knowledge and talent with us as a guest blogger in the near future.  You will also find a banner link to Joy’s beautiful blog on our Culinary Travel Homepage.

Gourmeted.com Banner on Celebrations International Travel Web Site

Check out this divine tiramisu made by Joy of Gourmeted.com.  Looks just as good as restaurant-quality, but it’s homemade!  Read more about Joy and her love of cooking, and follow her on Twitter @Gourmeted.

Tiramisu by Gourmeted.com

Homemade Tiramisu by Joy of http://www.Gourmeted.com

Click on the photo above to view Joy’s recipe.

If you love Italian food and want to enjoy an authentic Italian culinary experience, check out Celebrations International Travel’s Tuscany culinary tour.   The itinerary posted is only an example of the types of tours we can custom create for your family, group, or organization.  Let us help you plan an ideal tour to savor the tastes of Tuscany!

View sample itineraries for other featured culinary destinations.  In case you’re interested in a destination that’s not featured, contact us.  We can customize culinary tours throughout most of the world.

We found some excellent mussels at the store on Saturday, and used them in a great seafood pasta:

1 Kielbasa Sausage

1 Can Chopped Clams

2 Pounds Mussels

2 Tablespoons Crushed Garlic

1/3 to 1/2 Cup Water

White Wine to taste

Freshly Ground Black Pepper to taste

1 Handful Coarsely Chopped Basil Leaves

Parsley to garnish

3 Teaspoons Sugar

Boil your favorite pasta (We used spaghetti) and set aside.  Add the crushed garlic and cut Keilbasa to a heated skillet coated with cooking spray.  Sautee until the keilbasa is lightly browned, just enough to impart flavor, and set aside.

In a Dutch oven or similar vessel, place the mussels and water.  Cover to steam partially, then add the chopped clams, kielbasa, garlic, white wine, basil, sugar, and pepper.  Cover to continue steaming mussels over medium heat.  When the mussels are fully open, remove the cover and continue cooking on medium heat for a few minutes to allow the flavor of the wine to infuse.

Serve hot over pasta and garnish with parsley if desired.  Mangia!

Are you a culinary enthusiast?  Please post to our blog and visit with us! You may enjoy taking a look at our culinary tour sample itineraries, all of which can be customized for your family or group.

Here is a recipe for some deliously simple Schwaben Klappen cookies that some friends brought to our house for Sunday brunch recently.  They’re perfect if you like your cookies a little sweet, but not too sweet.  My friends school-aged childen don’t like them, but my preschoolers couldn’t get enough!

Enjoy, and let me know how yours turn out!

1/2 LB Sweet Butter

1/2 LB Cream Cheese

2    Cups Sifted Flour

2    Egg Yolks

* Strawberry Jam (for filling)

Mix first four ingredients cream butter and cream cheese add egg yolks and blend. Add flour.Knead dough.  Dough will be sticky.  May need to add a little more flour.  Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled ( about 1 hour) . Cut off small piece of dough and roll thin (put remainder of dough in refrigerator to keep chilled) cut dough withe drinking glass fill dough with jam (small amount of jam on the end of teaspoon) Pat a little water on the edge of cut dough, fold over and press edge together with fork. Place cookies on ungreased sheet. Bake @ 400 12 to 15 min.     Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

Taste versions of these and other German specialties on our Germany culinary tourContact us to plan your custom culinary tour today!

Almost all Chinese people I know (myself included) love to celebrate the holidays (make that any holiday) with an abundance of good food.  Considering my own background, I think the Chinese have some of the most discerning palates and tastes in the world.  By “discerning,” I don’t mean that all food has to be 5-star restaurant-looking, but it has to be good.  Good by the Chinese cook’s own discerning standards, that is!

While some foods are symbolic during various festivals and occasions, many dishes can be served and enjoyed throughout the year.  Here are a few traditional dishes:

Ming Tsai’s Red-Roast Duck with Baby Bok Choy

Braised Chinese Mushrooms

Sticky Rice with Chinese Sausage

Try your hand at making these and other Chinese specialties on a culinary tour to China!  The sample itinerary is posted on our Web site to give you an idea of the types of things you can see and do on one of our culinary tours.  However, we encourage you to take that inspiration (and your love of Chinese cooking) and run with it!  We will customize your culinary tour to suit your interests, preferences, dates, and budget.  Don’t just eat your way through China, this is your chance to truly experience the cuisine and culture!

Celebrations International Travel…Celebrating Life Through Travel SM


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This is blog based on the experiences and interests of travel agency owners Adrienne and Agni Mitra. Through our blog entries, we will share our travel experience and expertise. We will also have other entries of interest to inspire your travels.

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