My Mad Food Diary

After 3 long weeks in Texas, itโ€™s time to go back home and lose the weight from all the food I ate! ๐Ÿ˜‚ Here are some of the highlights though one thing I wonโ€™t miss is the heat! ๐Ÿ”ฅ๐Ÿ”ฅ

5th Aug- Starting off my summer in Texas with a citrusy rosรฉ slush ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿน
5th Aug- Dinner at Chili Parlor: their signature chili and gumbo. This is one of my favourite spots from my last trip.
5th Aug- Ice Cream at Lick. Yep thatโ€™s the name! Had it like 5 times when I was staying at Mueller. ๐Ÿ‘… ๐Ÿ‘… The Texas sheet cake and lime-coconut-tequila flavours were addictive!
6th Aug- Brunch at Colleenโ€™s Kitchen. Finally I have tried fried green tomatoes! ๐Ÿ˜‹
Biscuits and gravy with fried egg ๐Ÿณ The biscuits were the best I ever had- fluffy and light. โค๏ธ Got to say I have not been converted to the creamy American white gravy (just a bit too heavy for me), still preferred the traditional brown gravy.
6th Aug: After a hearty brunch, something light for change with a poke bowl.
6th Aug- Dinner at Asterโ€™s Ethiopian Restaurant. Absolutely bringing the heat here! ๐Ÿ”ฅ๐Ÿ”ฅ๐Ÿ”ฅ
7th Aug- Sunday farmersโ€™ market. Bubble tea is conquering the world now!
Pierogies ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘
7th Aug- Baoโ€™d Up Asian comfort food
Not food ๐Ÿ˜‚ but loved this cute mural
8th Aug- Back at Colleenโ€™s Kitchen. Absolutely delicious shrimp and grits (with collard greens) ๐Ÿคค๐Ÿคค
8th Aug- Never seen these kind of aubergines before (or eggplants as they say in America ๐Ÿ˜›)
8th Aug- Late night treat at Amyโ€™s Ice Cream
9th Aug- First time BBQing in the heat. Delicious lamb riblets from the farmersโ€™ market with a coffee rub. Stuffed the eggplants yesterday with garlic.
10th Aug- A light breakfast with Chobani lime yoghurt. Getting ready for a feast later.
10th Aug- Pre-ordered Franklin BBQ feast. The most famous brisket in Austin and it was so tender it melts in your mouth. ๐Ÿคค We did the pre ordering to avoid the massive long queue in the heat, but you must order at least 5 lbs of meat (complimentary bread and pickles). For 2 persons, this lasted us a good few days eating leftovers. ๐Ÿ˜‚
10th Aug- Ice cream is the best cure for the heat!
11th Aug- The Baked Bear. The signature Cookie Monster ice cream sandwich. ๐Ÿช๐Ÿช
13th Aug- Saturday farmersโ€™ market. This chicken mole tamale is so good – I need to come back again! ๐Ÿ˜‹๐Ÿ˜‚
13th Aug- Happy Birthday Austin! This is a free birthday cupcake. Amazing colours ๐ŸŒˆ but the frosting was very bitter from all the colourings they addedโ€ฆ
13th Aug- BBQ again. Lamb shoulder steak with garlic stuffed green peppers.
13th Aug- Relaxing evening in Mozart Cafรฉ by Lake Austin. ๐ŸŽต๐ŸŽถ๐ŸŽต๐ŸŽถ
14th Aug- Brunch at Snooze. Perfect combo of crab cake egg Benedict with their signature Bloody Mary. ๐Ÿคค๐Ÿฆ€๐Ÿ…
14th Aug- Dinner at 1618 Asian Fusion. Loved these duck skewers! Wish they were more!
Salmon curry and steak stir fry! โค๏ธ
14th Aug- Someone was drunk in the Calum Scottโ€™s concert and needed to grab a kimchi hot dog to soak up the alcohol. ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿฅด๐ŸŒญ
14th Aug- I blame the person who made drunk me grab a bakersโ€™ dozen of these gigantic Voodoo Doughnut! They are bigger than my hands!! ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ Oh the traumaโ€ฆ
15th Aug- Sip Pho. Very much needed something light after the doughnuts last night! ๐Ÿ˜‚
15th Aug- Kimbap dinner before boarding the late bus to San Marcos.
15th Aug- Arrived at San Marcos at 10pm after an-hour delayed bus. ๐ŸšŒ Grabbed a Sonic limonade slush.
16th Aug- First meal at San Marcos. Egg white frittata.
16th Aug- Dinner at Garciaโ€™s. One of the best Mexican food I ever had! The brisket Noteรฑa plate was absolutely! ๐Ÿ”ฅ๐Ÿ”ฅ Simple but high quality.
17th Aug- Back at Austin with the grill. ๐Ÿ”ฅ Grilled salmon with garlic spaghetti for dinner.
17th Aug- Doing what I know best! ๐Ÿ˜‚
18th Aug- Drinking bubble tea and sheltering from the sudden heavy rain. โ˜”๏ธ (Didnโ€™t know they rain in Texas! ๐Ÿ˜‚)
18th Aug- Dirty Martinโ€™s Place. Austinโ€™s oldest burger since 1926!
19th Aug- Foodheads. Sirloin steak salad for lunch! ๐Ÿ˜‹๐Ÿ‘
19th Aug- Vic and Alโ€™s. Blackened catfish salad, Cochon de Lait poโ€™boy and liver Boudin – the delicious Cajun flavours ๐Ÿ”ฅ๐Ÿ”ฅ
20th Aug- Brunch at Arturoโ€™s. Look at that Hollandaise sauce! ๐Ÿคค
20th Aug- Told ya I will come back for the tamales! ๐Ÿ˜‚ They ran out of chicken mole ones, but this spring vegetables (recommended by the still vendor) tasted even better! Itโ€™s light and fresh with the colourful vegetables inside!
20th Aug- Ciscoโ€™s. President LBJโ€™s favourite dining place.
The chicken fried steak is so delicious with the lightly fried courgettes! (Even minus the creamy gravy) My friend ordered their signature migas and I kept wanting to steal it because it was so good (perfectly silky scrambled eggs)! Maybe I do have the taste buds of a president! ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ˜‚
21st Aug- Really wanted to eat migas after yesterday night but this one was nowhere near as good! โ˜น๏ธ
21st Aug- One final BBQ! Lamb leg steak, grilled garlic peppers and aubergines and my friendโ€™s tomatillo salsa. I am going to miss the โ€œlamb ladyโ€ (so I called) from the farmersโ€™ market.
22nd Aug- Was worried I have eaten too much lately. ๐Ÿ˜‚ So ordered a vegan breakfast plate- and I really enjoyed the scrambled tofu.
22nd Aug- Clay Pit Indian Restaurant. Exploring their cellar area. (This place is busy so always book in advance!) Just so happened there was a flash flood warning from the storm earlier, you could smell the dampness in there. ๐Ÿ’ฆ
Yummy calamari as our starter.
Chicken medallions korma curry and tandoori salmon. It was a bit of a long wait, but the waiter was so nice taking the drinks off the bill as a compensation. ๐Ÿ˜Š
23rd Aug- Venezuelan arepas in the UT campus. Blending in well with the UT students! ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐ŸŽ“
23rd Aug- Dinner spot of the lone Ceviche7 food truck. Canโ€™t wait to try the Peruvian food.
Was a long wait (probably like half an hour?) but it was worth it! Delicious ceviche with corns and sweet potatoes! ๐Ÿคค My friendโ€™s steak and fries was also very good! I love food truck!
24th Aug- Junk good day at Whataburger. Still taking time to process the creamy gravy and the giant soft drink cup. ๐Ÿ˜
24th Aug- Feeling creative. Tomato-less Spaghetti Bolognese with sweet curried mince and Granny Smith apple. ๐Ÿ You got to try it to believe it! ๐Ÿ˜œ
25th Aug- Vietnamese lunch before heading to the airport. โœˆ๏ธ

Toronto Day 2: Graffiti ๐ŸŽจ and Waterfall ๐ŸŒŠ

After the first busy day in Toronto, think maybe I should give myself a little break? Nah, itโ€™s packing in more and more! Two of my destinations on the itinerary were Graffiti Alley (recommended by my friend who visited before) and the legendary Niagara Falls! So it was up early in the morning and journey on! ๐Ÿƒโ€โ™‚๏ธโ˜€๏ธ

Graffiti alley was a decent half an hour walk from the Union Station, so it was perfect to walk off the breakfast calories lol! The artistry there really was very impressive, and it were pictures after pictures with my phone! ๐Ÿ“ธ ๐Ÿ“ธ These are some of my favourites below (and I still have even more pics but I thought letโ€™s not go overboard! ๐Ÿ˜‚) Which one of these is your favourite? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Afterwards, I found a little spot for lunch and ordered the Canadian national dish of poutine. I wonโ€™t say it was very impressive (to my British brain, it was essentially chips, gravy and โ€œhalloumiโ€-like cheese ๐Ÿ˜…). But whatโ€™s not to like?


I then returned to the Union Station area as I await my pick up bus to Niagara Falls. I ordered via FlixBus online, costing me just under ยฃ40 for the return journey (it was expensive ๐Ÿ’ธ๐Ÿ’ธ though it appeared to be my cheapest option from the recommendations at the tourist information centre. The only cheaper option was the seasonal weekend bus which I unfortunately would miss- apparently they are only CA$10 for a return ticket in comparison!!)

The bus pick up spot was at a weird cross junction down by the Harbourfront (8 York Street). It was hidden right behind some large scaffolding, so I almost missed it until I spot a large group of people queueing by the bus.๐Ÿ˜… The bus itself is around a 2-hour journey to the Niagara Falls, so it was time to sit back and relax (and charge my phone lol). ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ“ฑ๐Ÿ”Œ

Upon arriving, I took the inclined railway down the cliff (costing only CA$3 and it was super quick) to the Nigara Falls. And the spectacular views really were worth the journey! ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜

The roaring Niagara Falls
It was very cooling – cause the splashes even sprinkled on you on the high cliff! ๐Ÿ’ฆ๐Ÿ’ฆ
The ferry โ›ด braving the storm! ๐ŸŒŠ (They do tours down there in the water but I was a bit short on time plus they were a bit too expensive for me especially after spending so much already on the bus tickets! ๐Ÿ˜”)
Rainbow ๐ŸŒˆ at the waterfall (how lucky!)
Rainbow bridge to the US borders

With four hours to spend until my return bus, I decided to head over the State side of the Niagara Falls (in the state of New York) by crossing the Rainbow Bridge through to the US border. ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ Just a short tour before my flight to Texas tomorrow ๐Ÿ˜‚ and it was a straightforward crossing plus a small fee (make sure you have all your travel documents with you though!) The only extra thing right now (due to current COVID restrictions) is you will need to fill in the ArriveCAN form again before reentering Canada.

Crossing the borders
Leaving Canada ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ ๐Ÿ‘‹
The flags marking the two borders
Welcome to USA! ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ
New York, New York!
Looking over back at Canada from the US!

By the time I got back to Toronto downtown, it was already almost 9 at night ๐ŸŒƒ (and I got an early morning flight the next day urgh ๐Ÿ˜ช). But I did manage to capture the beautiful red sky form the sunset! ๐ŸŒ… (And enough to tempt me for a short wander around the city hehe!)

CN Tower in the sunset

After a small dinner back in my hotel room (with the leftovers noodles from Chinatown I left in the fridge yesterday ๐Ÿ˜‚), I made sure my alarm clock was set for my flight to Texas tomorrow morning! ๐ŸŒ„

6am at the airport ๐Ÿฅฑ and juice breakfast ๐Ÿฅค
Very small plane! My head could almost touch the ceiling! (And I am 5 ft 6โ€ฆ ๐Ÿ˜‚)
Flying over Texas โœˆ๏ธ

See you guys in USA! ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ

Toronto Day 1: A Fast-Paced Metropolitan ๐Ÿƒโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿƒโ€โ™‚๏ธ

So finally itโ€™s summer and my sabbatical has also officially begun! ๐Ÿ˜Ž And this August, I have planned for a long trip away from the UK as I will be visiting both Canada ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ and USA ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ for the entire month, so let the adventure begins! ๐Ÿƒโ€โ™‚๏ธ

Amazing scenery of Greenland as we flew over on the way to Canada โ„๏ธโ„๏ธ

Jetting off from Glasgow Airport in the early morning (spent a night over there after taking a bus from Edinburgh), the flight โœˆ๏ธ lasted around 7.5 hours before landing in Toronto. Though I had been running very low on sleep ๐Ÿ˜ด๐Ÿ˜ช since leaving home, but I managed to muster enough energy to head to downtown after checking into my hotel located near the Pearson airport.

Terminal changing train

From Terminal 1 Pearson airport. one may take the UP Express at the cost of just under CA$13 to Union Station in downtown (and they only offer one-way and no cheaper return optionโ€ฆ ๐Ÿ’ธ๐Ÿ’ธ) I stayed near Terminal 3, but it was a very easy change to Terminal 1 using the free terminal changing train.

Union Station in Toronto Downtown

Toronto was a huge, busy metropolitan (in my opinion, rivals New York!) and a fast-paced city with an almost futuristic feel to it. I was a bit blown away by the intensity at first, but at the same time, it was totally unforgettable. ๐Ÿ˜Š

What a metropolitan the city is! ๐Ÿ™
Trio of tacos for lunch! ๐ŸŒฎ ๐ŸŒฎ ๐ŸŒฎ
Loving the skyscrapers!
Busy busy busy!

After a brief lunch break, I headed to Jack Layton Ferry Terminal to board the ferry โ›ด heading to Toronto Island Park. The glorious sunny weather was perfect for a combo of sailing, park day and being by water! ๐Ÿ˜†โ˜€๏ธ

Terminal entrance
Boarding the ferry
Amazing skyline of Toronto! ๐Ÿ™ ๐Ÿ™
โ›ด โ›ด
Toronto Island Park
Pier sea view (not going to lie but there was an awful stench by the beach there!! ๐Ÿคข)

I also visited the Franklin Childrenโ€™s Garden – temporarily turning back into a kid again as I navigated around the bushes and joined in the scenes! There was something quite magical about it!

After boarding the ferry back to the main land of Toronto, there were forecasts of heavy rain and severe thunderstorms ๐Ÿ˜จ (and also just when I left my umbrella ๐ŸŒ‚ in the hotel!) But, after some initial hesitance, I decided to take the risk and walk to Chinatown for dinner – praying I could make it back before the rain falls! ๐Ÿƒโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ’จ

Toronto Chinatown

Toronto Chinatown was certainly unlike any in the UK – the moment I entered the community I completely felt like I was back in Hong Kong/China and the nostalgia hit me like a ton of bricks. After some wandering around (it was so big and I was totally spoiled for choices), I managed to find an eatery that really resembled those I used to visit as a child in Hong Kong and ordered some old classic favourites. ๐Ÿ˜‹

Squid fish balls and my favourite childhood drink- soya milk! Classic combo!
Bean paste mince noodles was one of my favourite comfort food as a kid! This one was so gigantic though that I had to take a doggy bag home ๐Ÿ˜‚
Even the ticket brought back so much memories! ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿฅฐ
Yakult bubble tea! ๐Ÿ‘Œ

And it turned out the weather forecast didnโ€™t happen ๐Ÿ˜†๐Ÿ˜†, so I skipped down the streets of Toronto with my takeout bag and bubble tea in hands as I crashed into a deep sleep back in my hotel room! ๐Ÿ˜ด A long day was finally over!

A Long Hot Weekend โ˜€๏ธ๐Ÿ”ฅ

For those of you in the south of England like me, you would know that we have been hit by a massive heatwave ๐Ÿ”ฅ๐Ÿ”ฅ (red warning alert! ๐Ÿšจ) With Monday and Tuesday forecasted to be the hottest days ever, I am so glad that my workplace has decided to switch to remote working for the two days (like come on, we donโ€™t even have air con!!), which means I also got a โ€œsort ofโ€ 4-day long weekend as I head into my final week in London! ๐Ÿ˜‰ My work colleagues have been so nice doing leaving-dos with me going bowling and meals for two days in a row, which means I only got some alone time until Sunday and I sure kept my day busy that day!

On Sunday, despite a massive broke down in the Central line, I managed to cross back to the other side of London via the overground visiting the Van Gogh exhibition I have been wanting to see for weeks. (Like literally itโ€™s popping up every other day on my Instagram lol! ๐Ÿ˜‚)

The signature sunflowers marking the the entrance
Van Gogh
The famous Starry Night at the top
Cafรฉ Terrace at Night – always get a sense of nostalgia seeing this painting as we used to have one back in my old family home
And of course the Sunflowers! ๐ŸŒป ๐ŸŒป

I was so surprised when I learnt that Van Gogh has been heavily inspired by Japanese culture (a favourite of mine!) Moreover, it was so amazing to see many of his arts brought into 3โ€“D form.

Wasnโ€™t sure if it was a geisha or a mermaid lol๐Ÿ˜‚
A 3-D replica of Van Goghโ€™s bedroom
Going back in time ๐Ÿ•ฐ
Can you tell this is 3D?

I then also had a play around in the colouring room! ๐ŸŽจ ๐Ÿ˜‚

Everyone is showcasing their skills here hehe!
How does my colouring skills look? ๐Ÿ˜‚

And finally into the Immersive Room watching the show as the amazing arts are projected live in the giant room. Here are some of my favourite snapshots!

Swallowed by the big waves! ๐ŸŒŠ ๐ŸŒŠ
Such beautiful night sky! ๐Ÿ˜โœจโœจ
Ambushed by sunflowers haha! ๐Ÿ˜‚

After the exhibition, I spent more time exploring the hipster neighbourhood of Shoreditch and the famous Brick Lane, and ended up eating lots of street food. (Was supposed to cut down a bit but I got so tempted! ๐Ÿ˜‚)

Yay Shoreditch!
Wow! Curry fish balls from my childhood – and so nice to pump into some fellow Hong Kongers running a stall here! ๐Ÿ˜‚ ๐Ÿ‘
Cheeeesy corn dog! ๐Ÿง€ ๐Ÿง€ ๐Ÿง€

And after 5 years in London, I finally got around visiting to the famous Brick Lane Beigel Bake! Worth the wait though! (A massive chunk of salt beef covered with gherkins and mustard- whatโ€™s not to love? ๐Ÿ˜‚)

Very busy inside the store – but the queue moved really quick thank goodness! (Wasnโ€™t sure how long I could bear standing in the sun!)
The world famous salt beef bagel. Look at the size of the meat! ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ (And now I am already craving to come back for another one!)

After a rather lazy day on Monday shading away from the heat, I eventually managed to brave the heat in the evening to see the new Minions movie! ๐ŸŽฅ ๐Ÿฟ Such a cute and whole movie, have you seen it yet?

A State of Unknown

In the past week, I have found myself reflecting a lot about the 6 years since I moved to London. I started postgraduate teacher training, and then went straight to teaching without really a clue about what I was doing. I had a lot of challenges and pain at the beginning, and almost wanted to quit, but somehow managed to stick with it (call me stubborn I guess). Just as I finally started to feel more at ease with my job, then the pandemic hit and the uncertainty with lockdown made me learnt not to take anything for granted. When society gradually reopened, post-lockdown chaos piled on like a ton of bricks, and new circumstances made me decided to go back to studying – and at last I am two weeks away from officially starting my sabbatical and facing a brave new unknown.

My last bake in my London apartment

I moved out of my flat yesterday and am staying at a hotel as I finish my last two weeks of work. Funny enough my last night in my apartment was instead mostly spent elsewhere as I was away at the annual BBQ with my colleagues (and marking my last bake with a fruit tart which I thought would go well with a summer BBQ! ๐Ÿ”ฅโ˜€๏ธ) Itโ€™s probably our largest gathering yet with old and new faces all coming together, which I guess put into perspectives of all the people I have met throughout my five years here. You would think I should be feeling stressed about moving, but I wasnโ€™t back home until late after midnight ๐Ÿ˜‚ (and bizarrely ended going outside again to buy some grilled chicken ๐Ÿ— and chips ๐ŸŸ after finishing my final pack at 2am!)

Everything felt like a blur in the morning as I dragged my bags and luggages down the stairs and boarded the Uber, and then rushing back on the tube to drop my key off at the agency before it closesโ€ฆ (Bizarrely a carnival was held there and the reception lady went outside with her young son to the face painting booth and made me stood outside for half an hour! ๐Ÿ˜‚ Though I grabbed a hot dog whilst waiting! ๐ŸŒญ)

The hotel room strangely reminds me of my first flat in London (TINY! ๐Ÿ˜‚)

I wonder how these final two weeks will turn out? First thing foremost is to make sure I can get up for my hour-long journey to work tomorrow morning! ๐Ÿƒโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿš† ๐ŸŒ…

Jubilee Weekend

Made this cake a few days ago for a best friendโ€™s BIG 3-0 birthday! ๐Ÿฅณ๐Ÿฅณ Had so much that evening at the bowling alley, and now I am enjoying the glorious sunshine โ˜€๏ธ at Folkestone for Jubilee weekend. Really donโ€™t want to go back to work on Mondayโ€ฆ ๐Ÿ˜ช๐Ÿ˜…

The cake is a strawberry wine cake! ๐Ÿ“๐Ÿ“
Had a bit of fun writing those tags using edible pens on wafer paper
Love being by the sea! ๐ŸŒŠ

Back to Paris: A Duoโ€™s Journey ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท

After almost three years, my trip in Paris still stays as one of my most memorable journey of all times given it was my first time travelling solo oversea. So, for this bank holiday weekend, I canโ€™t be more excited of going back!

This time, however, instead of travelling solo I will be exploring it with my bestie! ๐Ÿƒโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿปโ€โ™€๏ธ And we kicked the first night with a late, boozy dinner at Dรฉviant! ๐Ÿธ๐Ÿฅ‚

These octopus ceviche tostada were so delicious! ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜
From left to right clockwise: Beef tartare, pistachio gnocchi, pollock pil-pil and rhubarb sorbet

Hoping we werenโ€™t too hungover the next morning, we stopped by a beautiful smelling bakery on our way to the Louvre museum! ๐Ÿคค I ordered a delicious gammon quiche which as I was taking a picture, dropped onto the floor!! ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ (but 10-second rule right?? ๐Ÿ˜‚)

Smells so good! ๐Ÿ˜‹๐Ÿ˜‹
The Louvre

The Louvre was packed full of people on the day just like last time. However, this time I was smart enough to reserve a ticket beforehand, but it still took quite some time queuing to get in! Finally, I get to meet the famous Mona Lisa (my friend wasnโ€™t as enthusiastic about her though! ๐Ÿ˜‚)

The famous Mona Lisa (so many people around it!!)
I really enjoyed the Egyptian section of the museum
Big and strong Hercules! ๐Ÿ’ช ๐Ÿ’ช
Beautiful sculpture
My bestie is having fun! ๐Ÿ˜‚
Napoleon III Apartments at the Richelieu Wing
I do love chandeliers! โค๏ธ (But also very warm in the room haha! ๐Ÿฅต)
The stunning banquet room

After a brief rest, we then embarked on our long walk towards the Eiffel Tower, passing by Cafรฉ de Flore and Luxembourg Garden on the way! (Completely broke my record of steps that day haha! ๐Ÿ˜†๐Ÿƒโ€โ™‚๏ธ)

Fro-yo to recharge! ๐Ÿ˜
Grand Bassin Rond – the weather was so good that โ˜€๏ธ โ˜€๏ธ we sunbathed here for a bit!
Cafรฉ de Flore
Medici Fountain at Luxembourg Garden
Luxembourg Palace โ˜€๏ธโ˜€๏ธ
Second meal of gelato – needed it hahaha! ๐Ÿ˜‚
Quiet streets of Paris
Dinner time – and bestie absolutely refused to eat the snails! ๐Ÿ˜‚ ๐ŸŒ ๐ŸŒ
Climbing up the stairs of Eiffel Tower ๐Ÿ’ช
The view of Paris up at the Eiffel Tower
Eiffel Tower at night โœจโœจ
Midnight in Paris ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿฅฐ
Second dinner – someone is REALLY hungry after all the walking! ๐Ÿ˜‚ (and itโ€™s not me! ๐Ÿคฃ)

The next day we then visited the spectacular Petit Palais. A perfect spot for some morning relaxation and a light brunch! ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿฅฐ

The golden front gate of Petit Palais
Inside Petit Palais
Beautiful garden ๐ŸŒฟ๐ŸŒฟ at the centre
Roast chicken breast brunch ๐Ÿ‘

Maximising the time spent outdoor in the glorious weather, we also went picnicking back at Tuileries Garden by the Louvre as well as visiting the rooftop of Galeries Lafayette.

The most sophisticated supermarket packed lunch I have seen! ๐Ÿ˜† (Love how the olive oil and vinegar came in a tube!) Also realised many of this packed lunches in Paris donโ€™t include cutlery inside – so you need to buy your own one.
Palais Garner
The rooftop of Galeries Lafayette
Another gelato snack – FYI stracciatella ๐Ÿซ and lemon ๐Ÿ‹ sorbet is a magnificent combo!
A final walk down Passage Jouffroy

My bestie was heading back to London a day earlier than me, so after saying goodbye ๐Ÿ‘‹ to her at Gare du Nord, I am running solo again for the rest of trip! My first stop was the famous red windmill of Moulin Rouge (after unknowingly wandered passed the red light district of Pigalle ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ”ž probably wonโ€™t shared pics here in case people needed parental guidance haha! ๐Ÿ™ˆ๐Ÿ™ˆ)

Moulin Rouge

I was initially planning to visit Le Petit Canard nearby in the area for the famous duck ร  lโ€™orange, but unfortunately they were fully booked up (and also closed for the following day). ๐Ÿ˜” So, I took the metro line and headed back to one of my favourites from last time – Le Comptoir de la Gastronomie! The onion soup was one of the best I ever had! ๐Ÿ‘Œ

Classic French onion soup ๐Ÿง… ๐Ÿง€ ๐Ÿฅ–
A meaty Gourmand salad

And on my last day of my Paris stay (which coincided with Labour Day), I visited Marchรฉ Saint-Quentin and the Arc de Triomphe before taking Eurostar back to London. Somehow I gradually got a bit lost track of time and ended up being a bit of a mad dash home! (Typical! ๐Ÿ˜‚)

Marchรฉ Saint-Quentin
Wandered around for a long time deciding what to eat in the market ๐Ÿ˜‚ but went with this delicious Moroccan place in the end
How can you not try patisserie whilst in France?
Got the Fraisier and the passion fruit chocolate cake
Arc de Triomphe- Happy Labour Day!
Underneath Arc de Triomphe
A very quick sneaky visit to the president palace (hoping to meet Macron haha)- all the roads were blocked off with guards so thatโ€™s the best photo I could get ๐Ÿ˜…
Was running quite low on time and chowed down this duck ร  lโ€™orange in under 5 minutes and ran to Gard du Nord for my train back to London! ๐Ÿš„๐Ÿš„

Just Want to Quickly Sayโ€ฆ

Happy Easter! ๐Ÿฃ๐Ÿฅ๐Ÿฃ๐Ÿฅ

The following is a mango ๐Ÿฅญ and coconut ๐Ÿฅฅ cake surrounded by white chocolate feathers- a technique I also used to my mumโ€™s 60th birthday cake. (Very easy to do! ๐Ÿชถ All you need to do is melt and temper some white chocolate, then take a spoon and scrape the chocolate over baking paper. Once they are cooled and dried, they should peel off very easily. Give it a try! ๐Ÿ˜‰)

Happy 60th! ๐Ÿฅณ๐Ÿฅณ๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽŠ๐ŸŽŠ

Happy birthday to my mum! ๐ŸŽ‚๐ŸŽ‚ And itโ€™s the B-I-G 6-0!! Though I was a week late getting back home to celebrate due to work, but I finally managed to pick up the spatula and whisk again and start baking! ๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐Ÿณ (Was worried I might have gotten rusty after quite a long time of not baking haha!)

Mango entremet – struggled a little with the glaze so took me quite some time there! ๐Ÿ˜›
๐Ÿฅญ ๐Ÿฅญ ๐Ÿฅญ

We also visited Hibiki in Edinburgh for a Japanese birthday lunch! ๐Ÿ˜‹๐Ÿ˜‹ A bit pricey but we loved all the food there!

Prawn and vegetables tempura & BBQ pork ribs (super soft!)
Sushi platter and prawn yakisoba
And black sesame ice cream for dessert! ๐Ÿจ