Every country, every village in Europe has its rhythm, its history, and every place has its local recipes and sweets. A country’s cuisine can be what brings people back every year and desserts are as interesting as the main courses. The crème brûlée, the apple tart, the chocolate cake, the pistachio ice cream, and mouth-watering meringues, descending slowly on the table are all perfectly pleasant. Europeans clearly have a sweet tooth.
Satisfying your sweet tooth can often be one the best parts of a holiday. Whether it’s in a restaurant, a patisserie or lazing by the pool, discovering your new favorite dessert can often be the highlight of any trip.
Thomson Lakes and Mountains have put together some of the finest sweet delights from 9 hotspots for getaways, with treats you may know or are yet to sample. Their interactive map will take you across the continent, showcasing the finest pastries, biscuits and cakes.
With over 27 different sweets, pastries and cakes, here are some of the tasty highlights:
- France – The Clafoutis is the baked fruit dessert from Limousin packed with black cherries, supposedly derived from the Occitan word ‘fill’. Fill up, indeed!
- Italy – The nougat-like treat Mandorlato Torrone is local to a small commune named Cologna Veneta. The region in the Province of Verona even has its own annual nougat festival!
- Austria – If you’re in Salzburg, be sure to sample the Nockerl, a dumpling-style dessert iconic to Austrian cuisine. The powdered sugar dusting is meant to signify the snow-covered mountain peaks.
- Spain – The Torrija serves up what is essentially a variation of French toast, originating over 500 years ago and often made with alcohol.
- Germany – The Berliner Pfannkuchen is the dessert responsible for JFK calling himself a doughnut which, while not strictly true, adds some humorous history to a tasty treat.
- Portugal – Lisbon’s Bolo Rei is a traditional cake covered with candied fruit often eaten around Christmas time.
Dessert-fanatics can use the Thomson Lakes and Mountains interactive to explore further, with confectionary items from Belgium, Switzerland and Slovenia all featuring on the Secret Sweets map. Martin Nolan at Thomson Lakes and Mountains’ claims that the map is ‘a great tool people can use to learn about the rich history of delicious European desserts’.
The tool also shows users the ingredients, where it’s best to eat/buy, and a brief history of the dessert. Find out what you’ll be trying on your next trip away here.