Pasteis de Nata

Explore the World with International Desserts

Delicious food and travel come together in desserts from around the world! One of the finest parts of travel is exposure to new regional food favorites. Even if a Eurotrip is not in your near future, trying dishes from around the world is one way to experience other countries and cultures from the comfort of your own kitchen. While ice cream, brownies, and patriotic berry pie are certainly enough to satisfy any sweet tooth, you must try these desserts from around the world at least once.

 

PastelDeNataPastéis de Nata

This egg-based pastry makes its way to American kitchens from Portugal. The outside is crispy and brown, and a creamy custard tops this dessert. Pastéis de Nata is perfect paired with decaf coffee after an evening meal.

If you want to create this Portuguese pastry in your own kitchen, get a muffin tin with 2 by 5/8 inch wells, and follow the recipe from Leites Culinaria.

 

 

Baklava_-_Turkish_special,_80-ply-2Baklava

Baklava’s hometown is Istanbul, Turkey, although this dessert is enjoyed all over the world. Light and flaky, baklava is perfect if you want something sweet but not too heavy. Often filled with nuts, the layers of this pastry are held together by syrup or honey. Beware – this dessert can be messy to eat!

Check out Epicurious.com for the how-to!

 

 

Exif_JPEG_PICTUREFlan

Flan is a favorite Mexican dessert that has become popular in many other parts of the world. Although there are several variations of this tasty treat, flan typically has a pastry-like exterior with a sweet filling in the middle.

Read here for full details on making your own flan! Prep time is only 20 minutes, which makes this dessert an easy one for beginners.

 

 

Regardless if you ever visit Portugal, Turkey, or Mexico, you nevertheless will have enjoyed staples of their cuisine. Want more delicious dessert recipes? Check out The Food Network!

Are there any other international treats that you recommend? Comment below and let us know!

shih_tzu_puppies_8_by_xxtgxxstock-d61yvu4

The Top 5 Cutest Breeds of Dogs

Whether you are a dog lover or a cat person, there is no denying that puppies are simply adorable. There are a lot of cute dogs out there, but which breeds can claim the superlative?

 

CorgiCorgi

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi is an easily trainable, people-oriented dog. This adorable pet needs exercise and interaction with people to remain happy. According to WebMD, Pembroke Welsh Corgis avoid many of the health problems associated with other small dogs due to the fact that they are a dwarf breed. One of the few downsides of Corgis? They shed. A lot.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shih TzuTwo_red_and_white_haired_shih_tzu_littermates

As a tiny, fluffy dog, this breed is one of the most adorable out there. According to Woofipedia they were the pets of Chinese royalty for hundreds of years. And no wonder – these dogs have beautiful coats that make their nickname, the “lion dog,” no surprise. A Shih Tzu is the perfect canine companion for someone living in an apartment or small house.

 

 

 

 

 

PomeranianPomeranian

These intelligent pets make up in personality what they lack in size. Although they tend to bark frequently, they are very intelligent and trainable. Another perfect pet for an apartment setting, Pomeranians are ideal for people who want a little companion.

 

 

 

 

basset houndBasset Hound

Ears hanging low, this breed is a very friendly, gentle one. Unlike the previous two cutest dogs, their coats require little maintenance, which makes a Basset Hound ideal for someone who does not want to spend a lot of time on doggy grooming. Always eager to catch a new scent, a Basset Hound loves outdoor walks!

 

 

 

 

Beagle_puppy_6_weeksBeagle

According to the American Kennel Club, the adorable Beagle is a people puppy, loving the company of humans and other dogs. Historically a hunting dog, Beagles love to sniff out new scents. While Beagles come in different sizes and colors, the most famous Beagle of all is the black and white Snoopy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whether your dog falls into one of these breeds or is completely different, make sure to give your pup the best care of all and check out Bark Magazine for special dog owner tips!

Is there another type of dog that deserves to make the list? Let us know below!

Barcelona

So You Want to be a Globetrotter? Barcelona Edition

Between beautiful scenery and getting away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, a European vacation is like lemonade on a hot day. Whether you are in the midst of planning a trip or are simply exploring your future options, pick a destination that will leave you smiling, relaxed, and with plenty of fodder for Instagram pictures. Although there is no shortage of lovely vacation spots in Europe, some are simply a cut above the rest. This week, we are exploring the beautiful Barcelona!

Coming as no surprise to anyone, Barcelona makes the list for one of the best travel spots of the year. Combining historical authenticity and urban appeal, this Spanish city offers everything from Gothic architecture to street performers. A tourist will have no shortage of sights, smells, and sounds to absorb and enjoy! US News and Trip Advisor have a few “musts” for your Barcelona vacation.

Casa Batllo1. Take throwback Thursday to the next level with the historical buildings

Instagram’s first #TBT has nothing on Barcelona’s rich historical background. The city’s architecture is incredible, and a little touristy sightseeing action is a necessity for any traveler’s to-do list. Antoni Gaudi’s Church of the Sacred Family and Casa Milà are popular picks, as is his Casa Batlló. Leave room in your schedule for a trip to the Montjuïc Castle, and make sure that your camera battery is fully charged!

2. Try out the city’s sunny backyard – the beach

While Barcelona’s beaches might not have the most pristine sand and clearest water, they are nevertheless a perfect way to spend one of your vacation days and take in some vitamin D. After immersing yourself in the beautiful city La Ribera, change up the scenery with a relaxing beachy afternoon.

3. Shopping is a must

Wait no longer for the perfect excuse to be a shopaholic for a day (or three). Not only does Barcelona offer shopportunities that give most large European cities a run for their money, this Spanish metropolis also takes a more artistic twist that will make your Barcelona shopping experience as unique as the must-have jacket that you find on the street market.

4. Explore Las Ramblas

This street is one of Barcelona’s most famous and offers a wealth of unique experiences. From the aforementioned abundance of shopping experiences to tapas bars to human statue art, the pedestrian-friendly Las Ramblas will draw you into a cultural experience that you will never forget.

Don’t just take our word for it, though – some things you have to see to believe! Research your future vacation with magazines like Travel + Leisure and National Geographic Traveler that will help you plan the dream getaway.

We didn’t touch on all of Barcelona’s wonders! Comment below if you think that another must-see deserves to be on our Globetrotter: Barcelona list.

Puppy

Creative Games for Your Dog

Lately, we’ve been focusing on our health, our families, and delicious desserts. While all of these topics are all well and good, our furriest family members are left out of the fun. Take a moment to honor man’s best friend by checking out these puppy-approved games!

Is your pup a little too plump for his britches? A treat ball like one from PetSmart is perfect for dogs who get more treats than exercise. Put treats in the middle of this hollow ball. You can also put dog goodies in the easily-accessible outside craters if your dog deserves double treats. With the alluring scent of the dog treat holding his attention, your pup will entertain himself for hours, all while getting much-needed exercise.

PuppyThis doggy version of “hide and seek” takes a twist on a childhood classic. Doggy hide and seek is simple to set up, easy on the wallet, and perfect for a rainy afternoon. Thanks to Disney’s Babble for this DIY idea!

All you need are small-to-medium-sized empty boxes, your dog’s favorite treat, and little quality time to spend with your pup. If your canine friend is on a diet, substitute treats with toys. Place the boxes around a room, or multiple rooms if you want to take the game to the next level, and place a treat under each box. Tell your dog to “go find” the treat. Keep in mind that you might have to point to a box housing a treat the first few times you play so that your dog can learn the game. It will not take long for your dog to learn to find and flip over boxes hiding the treats! Kids love setting up this game, too.

Lost KeysOnce you and your dog are doggy hide and seek pros, stimulate your dog’s brain with this game from DogProblems.com that is incredibly useful for the household humans. This game is a twist on doggy hide and seek but adds a little more complexity to the mix. Do you have problems with losing your keys from time to time? This doggy game will solve your problems!

  1. Attach a small piece of leather to your key chain. Spend two minutes pinching the leather between your thumb and index finger. This will transfer some of the oil in your skin to the leather and link your “scent” to it.
  2. During your next game of doggy hide and seek, substitute your key chain for the treat.
  3. When your dog finds the bucket that hides your keys, lift the bucket to reveal your keys. At this point, abundantly praise your dog for his feats and make a big deal about your dog finding the keys. You may also want to give a rewarding treat to your dog, at least at first.
  4. Finally, you can start hiding your key in other places around the room, away from the buckets. Start out easy. Place them on the floor, next to the couch, or anywhere your dog can almost stumble upon them quite easily.
  5. After a few days, you should be able to hide your keys in some really difficult places, and your dog will be able to find them for you.
  6. Imagine how handy this trick will become when you really lose your keys!

Give your dog the tender loving care that he deserves with games that will keep his tail wagging for hours. For more dog tips, check out our collection of canine reads that will help you be as loyal to your dog as he is to you.

What other games does your dog love? Share below in the comments!

Cookie Dough

Chocolate Chip Cookies with a Twist

Chocolate chip cookies make life a little better, and these delicious treats from Pinterest have somehow managed to take chocolate chip cookies to the next level. If cookie dough dipped in chocolate isn’t enough incentive to try this recipe, consider that these tasty tidbits from Bakerella and Lindsay Landis’ “The Cookie Dough Lover’s Cookbook: Cookies, Cakes, Candies, and More” are healthier than raw cookie dough alone! Why? The recipe takes the salmonella risks of raw cookie dough out of the mix by substituting uncooked eggs with other delicious ingredients. Next time you make a trip to the grocery store, pick up these items to make your chocolate chip cookie dough truffles!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Truffles Shopping List:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
  • Small sprinkles
  • Chocolate candy coating

You Will Also Need:

  • 1-inch scoop or a spoon
  • Popsicle sticks

To Make Your Truffles:

  1. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugars with an electric mixer until fluffy (about 3 minutes).
  2. Mix in milk and vanilla.
  3. Add flour and salt and mix on low until combined.
  4. Stir in chocolate chips.
  5. Chill dough in refrigerator for about 30 minutes until firm enough to scoop into 1-inch balls.
  6. Place rolled balls on a wax paper lined baking sheet and place in freezer for 15 minutes or more.
  7. Melt candy coating following instructions on the package. Remove a couple of balls from the freezer and insert the cut stick into each ball. Dip it in the candy coating and let any excess fall off back into the bowl.
  8. Add small sprinkles on top and place on wax paper to set. Note: If the chocolate pools at the bottom of the ball, dot the balls on the wax paper until most of it is pulled off the ball and then place it on a clean spot of the wax paper to set.

You can also decorate them to look like chocolate chip cookies! Flatten the balls before freezing. Take a popsicle stick, put it in the middle of the cookie, and dip into the candy coating. If you want to add sprinkles, do so before the candy coating hardens. Make sure to refrigerate these goodies. They will be good for up to a week!

If you love chocolate chip cookies (who doesn’t, though) and are looking for a “no cooking required” recipe, this treat is for you. Thanks to this recipe, you can enjoy raw cookie dough without risking a salmonella episode.

Layered Chocolate Chip Cookie CakeIn case you didn’t satisfy your chocolate chip cookie fix with the above recipe, here is another spin off of the chocolate chip cookie! This recipe from SugarHero takes the cake for making dessert even more delightful. Don’t be daunted by the long recipe – the Neapolitan chocolate chip cookie cake takes only 22 minutes to prepare before popping it in the oven. It serves 12-16 people, so everyone will get a piece (or two).

Shopping List:

  • 13¾ oz (3¼ cups) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 9 oz butter
  • 11¼ oz (1½ cups) brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 4 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 18 oz (3 cups) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3 oz unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 cups freeze-dried strawberries
  • 12 oz butter, at room temperature
  • 36 oz (9 cups) powdered sugar
  • ½ cup milk, divided use
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt

To Make Your Cookie Layers:

  1. Line three 8-inch cake pans with parchment paper. Spray them with nonstick cooking spray. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. Combine the butter and sugar in the bowl of a large stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat them together on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add one egg at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla extract.
  3. With the mixer running on low speed, add the dry ingredients and mix until just a few streaks of flour remain. Finish mixing by hand, and stir in the chocolate chips.
  4. Divide the dough between the three prepared pans. Bake the cakes for about 22 minutes until they’re golden brown, starting to pull away from the sides of the pan, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  5. Set the cakes on a wire rack until completely cool.

To Make Your Frosting:

  1. Microwave the unsweetened chocolate in a small bowl in 30-second increments until melted. Once melted and smooth, set it aside to cool to room temperature.
  2. Place the freeze-dried strawberries in a food processor until they are a fine powder.
  3. Combine the butter, powdered sugar, ⅓ cup milk, vanilla extract, and salt in the large bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on low speed until the sugar is moistened.
  4. Raise the speed to medium and beat for 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy.
  5. Divide the frosting into three portions, making one slightly larger than the other two.
  6. Stir the melted chocolate and a tablespoon of milk into the second portion.
  7. Stir the strawberry powder and the remaining milk into the third portion.

The Grand Finale:

  1. Place one cookie layer on your serving plate and spread the chocolate frosting on top.
  2. Add a second cookie on top and spread the strawberry frosting on the second cookie.
  3. Top the stack with the third cookie. Spread some vanilla frosting on top and use the rest to pipe rosettes or other decorations around the edge. Top with chocolate chips or sprinkles.

Chocolate chip cookie dough truffles and Neapolitan chocolate chip cookie cake not enough? Get chocolate chip cookie recipes and more delivered right to your door via the Food Network Magazine! Let us know how much you enjoy these decadent desserts, and start living more deliciously today.

Sunflower

Which Magazine is Perfect for Your Fitness Goals?

Running FeetWhile we all know how easy it is to put personal health on the backburner for more immediate matters like work demands and family dinners, paying poor attention to your health will eventually catch up to you. Thankfully, getting back in shape does not have to be overwhelming or too time-consuming. Rather than reinventing the wheel in your attempts to go from flab to fit, make sure that you are educated on tried-and-true tips that will get you on the path to looking great and feeling better! Do you know about three of the best fitness magazines for your health?

As the name implies, Shape Magazine is an ideal magazine for women who want to get – and stay – in shape. Their articles are full of advice on everything from quick exercises that will help you get the body that you have always wanted to motivational stories about women who successfully made their health a priority. If you want advice on how to look and feel fantastic, then Shape Magazine might become your new best fitness friend!

First For Women Magazine focuses on living a well-rounded life – a goal that is easier said than done. How often do you sacrifice exercise for the sake of running errands? While errands are an unavoidable part of life, skipping activities that promote your health will compromise your well-being over time and can leave you feeling too tired to finish everything on your to-do list. This read is for those of us who often put our health and exercise needs behind life’s other demands. First For Women Magazine will help you balance your life between family time and “me” time and even leave some room for relaxation.

Health Magazine takes a holistic approach toward fitness. By addressing topics like food, relationships, and fashion in additional to tidbits about exercise, Health Magazine is perfect for the woman who wants to make her life healthier in every aspect. From recipes that promote well-being to tips on how to look younger, Health Magazine is the title of choice for many women.

Summer is the season of bathing suits, warm weather that allows for more outside workouts, and fresh fruits and vegetables. Keep your health on your mind during the rest of the summer!