So you make it a point to check out the local cuisine and as soon as you hit a new place? The best steak, best curry, best tacos, best seafood…hey! What about the best sweets? Here is what you need to try…
Natas from Portugal
This extremely popular dessert from the land of Vasco Da Gama, is a classic egg tart pastry with a rather interesting story of origin. Light, soft tarts topped with custard made of cornflour, cream, sugar & egg yolks. Variations include a gentle sprinkling of cinnamon powder. Owing to their popularity, Natas can easily be found in most cities in the world and at most outlets of Nandos.
Coming back to its origin, according to a theory, Natas came into existence in the old times when egg whites were used in big quantities by nuns in the convents to starch their clothes and egg yolks would be discarded!
Gulab Jamun from India
Gulab Jamuns were first prepared in India during the medieval times. They are a delight if you have a sweet tooth and love to indulge guilt-free. Gulab Jamuns are traditionally made of khoya (milk solids), cardamom powder, saffron & very importantly rose essence. Balls made of khoya are deep fried and then allowed to stand in flavoured sugar syrup for at least 2 hours. The result; beyond words! So popular are Gulab Jamuns that they stand to be the symbol of Indian desserts the world over and are thus available easily across the globe.
Coconut Ice from South Africa
If you are a fan of coconut, then this one is for you from the enriched land of Africa! Cream of tartar, condensed milk, desiccated coconut & icing sugar all come together to create this rather unique coconut dessert, in hues of pink & white with a little help of food colour! Coconut Ice is light on the palate and rather soothing after a heavy meal. A perfect finale to a wholesome African meal.
Bee Sting from Germany
This dessert with a rather interesting name has interesting stories attached to its origin. While one theory says the name comes from its honey topping, another suggests that a bee was attracted to this cake when it was made first and it stung the baker! With stories galore, a typical preparation of the Bee Sting cake consists of yeast dough, caramelised almonds & vanilla custard. A very refreshing dessert, this one is light on the palate and if made well, it’s supposed to literally melt in your mouth. Filling of vanilla custard ensures that the taste of honey & caramelised almonds at the top does not dominate and the entire confluence of these varying flavours is a foodie’s delight.
Icy coconut or bee stings or just plain egg yolks…a sweet tooth always finds ways to please itself!