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Exploring Tea Plantations in Sri Lanka

Chances are when you’re visiting Sri Lanka, you are going to visit Hill Country, the land of tea plantations and scenic views.

Sri Lanka’s tea country is simply breathtaking and so magical.

You get to enjoy acres and acres of vivid green and some of the best tea in the world.

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Hill Country is a popular destination. Most people take the scenic train from Ella to Nuwara Eliya which is considered one of the world’s most beautiful train trips.

Unfortunately, we did not take the train, instead we drove. A road trip to Hill Country is no less breathtaking than the train especially with the many fruit and street food stops 😉

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There are plenty of tea plantations to choose from. We will refrain from recommending any. They all offer very similar experience.

You get to wander the factory and witness the process of making tea then you’ll be treated to a tasting to try the different flavours( Black, green, white, etc.) . Most factories have a shop to buy tea gifts and souvenirs.

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Although we wouldn’t qualify this experience as the most authentic, expect the factories to be crowded with other curious travellers and tourists, we really recommend going to Hill Country and enjoy this stunning area.
Tea lovers will love experiencing how one of the best teas in the world is being made.

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The Travelling Foodie Guide To Street Food In Kairouan, Tunisia

Founded by the Arabs around 670, Kairouan became a dominant trading hub and centre of Islamic scholarship in the 9th century, when Aghlabid emirs ruled Kairouan and built many of its monuments. 

The city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is regarded by many Muslims as the fourth holiest site in Islam.

The Great Mosque of Kairouan

We walked within the walls of the Medina (old town)  exploring its beautiful small allies and many mosques.

Other than its monuments, Kairouan is also known for its fantastic food. If you’re ever visiting, make sure to taste the following:

Kafteji

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Kafteji is something of a Tunisian poor man’s food: various vegetables are fried separately and then with an oozy fried egg, chopped up together with a large knife. It’s made with potatoes, pepper and tomatoes. One eats it with bread or as a sandwich.

It’s now one of the country’s most popular and delicious street foods. It also originated in Kairouan.

All food stalls on the side of the roads offer kafteji sandwiches. One shop was highly praised so we tried it.

 

 


كفتاجي خيري -Kafteji Khayri is a must-visit in Kairouan. It offers the best kaftejis cooked in a traditional oven. Price wise, a Kafteji plate costs less than one pound Sterling!

They are very generous with quantities. The price includes a side of fries and traditional bread.

Kafteji Khayri is not touristy in any way, and it’s where the locals eat. We highly recommend it if you’re looking for a cheap, delicious plate of food surrounded by the locals.

Makroudh

Makroudh is a North-African sweet pastry filled with dates and nuts or almond paste, that has a diamond shape – the name derives from this characteristic shape. The dough is made with a combination of semolina and flour, which gives the pastry a very specific texture and flavour. It is said that it originates from Kairouan, thus, in every corner of the Madina, you’ll see a Makroudh shop. Every seller will brag how their Makroudh is the best Makroudh in Kairouan. We think they are all equally good.


The people of Kairouan are proud of their Makroudh. They will make sure that you buy enough of it to take home to taste with family and friends. It’s true, Makroudh is yummy with a cuppa.

Kairouan is one of Tunisia’s best-kept secrets. It kept its authenticity and style. It’s bursting with history, culture and delicious food.

You should definitely consider visiting Kairouan next time you are in Tunisia.

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RESTAURANT REVIEW| Mango Tree, London

The food scene in London is so vibrant and never ceases to evolve. There are a lot of food markets around the city, notably Borough Market. The city has a serious love-affair with street food.

Cultural diversity has helped building London’s foodie reputation. It also helped creating a diverse food scene.

One of London’s best known Thai restaurants is Mango Tree. It’s JK Rowling’s favourite Thai restaurant.

Located in Belgravia, Mango Tree offers authentic traditional Thai food.

Disclaimer: We couldn’t make it to the restaurant. Instead, we ordered some items from their menu to taste. 

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The menu offers a variety of options, they even have a dedicated Gluten Free and Vegetarian  menus.

The dim-sum wide selection caught our eyes and we had to try some.

The mixed seafood and spinach dim-sums did not disappoint.

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We also tried the POONIM YUM MAMUANG, a Soft-shell crab tempura served with Thai mango salad and Thai citrus soya sauce. The crab was okay but not super amazing. May be it’s due to the time it took to actually deliver it. The Thai mango salad and Thai citrus though were so delicious, tangy and fresh. We loved those. 

 

The last dish we tried was the SOM TUM GOONG SOD-  a Green papaya salad with fresh king prawns, cherry tomatoes, long green beans, peanuts, dried shrimps powder and chilli dressing. It was very filling and delicious. 

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We enjoyed the food from Mango Tree. It’s affordable, authentic and yummy. We can’t wait to visit them next time we are in London!

 

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The Travelling Foodie Guide To Ubud Cafes

There are countless reasons to visit Ubud. It’s Bali’s cultural heart and is home to amazing art studios, antique, crafts, jewellery and paintings.

Ubud has been attracting more and more visitors. it has build up a reputation for itself not only with its beautiful unique shops but also with its impressive and healthy selection of cafes.

Here’s our guide to awesome cafes in Ubud.

Casa Luna

Situated the opposite side of the road from Ubud Palace and Saraswati temple, Casa Luna is the perfect spot to relax and enjoy a bite after exploring the temples.

Casa Luna has been serving Balinese and modern cuisines for more than 25 years now. It’s a must-visit for food lovers.

It takes real skill to put so much flavour in a simple sandwich. We had a sandwich packed of flavour at Casa Luna and that’s why it has made it to our ultimate food guide.

Caramel Patisserie & Cafe

Caramel cafe satisfied our desserts and cakes cravings. They have a selection of mouthwatering cakes and macaroons.

Tucked on the corner of the main street, Caramel is the perfect spot to chill. They have a lovely terrace overlooking Ubud.

Tukies Cafe

Tukies cafe also known as the coconut shop is all about coconut, in case that’s not obvious. This small cafe offers so many treats.
You can grab a whole fresh coconut or one of their juices.

Our recommendation? The coconut ice-cream. Yum!

Atman Nourish Kafe

Atman Kafe is overlooking a rice paddy. If you are looking for a relaxed and beautiful atmosphere, that’s the place to be.

They offer a variety of vegetarian and vegan dishes.

Clear Cafe

Clear cafe specialised in clear healthy food, thus the name.They offer a range of organic, raw and/or vegan dishes. They combine healthy with delicious.

We highly recommend any of their salad bowls.

Anomali cafe

Anomali Coffee is the place to be if you are looking for a good cuppa. They also offer Barista classes and manual brewing workshops.

Seniman Coffee Studio

Seniman coffee is our favourite coffee in Ubud. They use the best coffee beans in Indonesia and they roast them in-house.

Seniman has expanded lately due to their popularity and good quality. They now offer a variety of workshops on how to learn to master a brew from home brewing to Latte art.

There’s also the Seniman shop where you can buy coffee, soap made out of the coffee wastes and other items.

We highly recommend a visit to Seniman Studio whenever you are in Ubud.

Refresh Cafe

 Refresh cafe is localted near Blanco museum, they have a lovely garden and an amazing selection of food.

Worth a mention

Alchemy, Bali Buda and Earth Cafe, we’ve heard good things about these cafes but we didn’t get to visit them.

Hopefully, we visit them next time we are in Ubud.

 

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Food experiences not to miss in Bali

Oh Bali! Beautiful, charming Bali!

Bali is an Indonesian island known for its forested volcanic mountains, iconic rice paddies, beaches and coral reefs. The island is home to religious sites such as cliffside Uluwatu Temple. The Balinese culture is mainly Hindu.

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Anyone who’s been to the island of Gods would tell you how special it’s and how much they enjoyed their time there.
The Travelling Foodie is no exception. We’ve had such an amazing time in Bali if not short.We will most definitely go back to explore more of this piece of heaven.

There are so many things to do and enjoy in Bali from hiking volcanic mountains to  surfing, you name it.
The good news for foodies like us is that there are food-related activities to enjoy in Bali as well.

We mainly explored Ubud and the surrounding areas.

Ubud is probably Bali’s cultural heart and is home to amazing art studios, antique, crafts, jewllery and paintings.

Ubud is also a popular tourist destination. Eat, Pray, Love caused a massive rise in the numbers of people attracted to Ubud.

It can be crowded sometimes. We visited during December which is considered high season but also rainy season. Just before Christmas, it wasn’t busy at all and when it rained, it did mostly in the evenings. The occasional rain did not stop us from enjoying our time.

There are a lot of unique experiences in Bali to enjoy and this is what we think are the culinary adventures that you shouldn’t miss:

An early morning stroll in the local food market

This is not to confuse with Ubud Art Market which is very popular with tourists.

For an authentic Balinese market experience, head to the local market early morning around 7 or 8 AM.

By 9 AM, all shopping would be done and vendors would start shutting off their stalls.

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Most cooking classes in Ubud offer a trip to the market to get to know the ingredients before using them.

If you are planning on taking a cooking class, make sure it includes a trip to the local market.

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Other than the usual vegetables, fruits and meats, the market was full of beautiful flowers as the locals were preparing for Galungan. The flowers are used to make offerings.

Galungan is a Balinese holiday celebrating the victory of dharma over adharma. It marks the time when the ancestral spirits visit the Earth.

It’s a very important celebration for Balinese people. We were so lucky to be in Ubud around that time of year to be able to witness this celebration.

A cooking class

While strolling Ubud streets, especially central Ubud, you will notice lots of signs for cooking classes.

A cooking class is a great way to understand the flavours and how the local ingredients are used in the Balinese cuisine.

The food scene in Ubud is surprisingly varied, it’s such a vegetarian-friendly destination, thus we found ourselves opting for a vegetarian cooking class.

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Our amazing cooking experience included a visit to the local market then a walk around the farm to learn about the fruits and vegs organically grown there (there’s even fish!) followed by hours of cooking by poolside.

Our chef was fantastic explaining every step and answering all of our questions. We ended up with a feast of Balinese vegetarian food : a tofu satay, young papaya soup, sayur urap accompanied by rice and sambals.

For dessert, we made Kolak Pisang which is Indonesian banana compote with coconut milk.

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The cooking class was a highlight of our trip to Bali, it was so much fun not to mention all the delicious food we made and eventually ate.

If you would like us help you book your cooking class in Ubud, just drop us a line 🙂