This summer I rediscovered once again my obsession with aubergines. Spending almost a month in Greece, the one thing that I consumed every single day was and honestly I never got tired of it. When I came back home I still found myself craving and wanting to have it on a day to day basis. Inspired from my trip to Morocco this year, especially the traditional spice mixture from its cuisine, I created this simple and quick cous cous with aubergine. As most of my recipes it takes almost no time to make, it tastes delicious and you can eat it on its is own or serve it as a side to your main dish. The best thing about it is that it’s budget friendly and you most probably have most of the ingredients in your pantry.
1/2 cup of cous cous
1 large or 2 medium sized Aubergines
One bunch of mint leafs
1 tsp. Cumin
1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
1/4 cup – walnuts
What to do?
1. Cut the aubergines into round circles and place them on a baking sheet
2. Salt them and let them sit for 15min. – in this way you dry out the moisture and make them taste less bitter
3. After the time has passed brush them with olive oil and place in the 180 preheated oven until ready( 20-25min.)
4. In the meantime mix the half a cup of cous cous with a 1tsp. Olive oil, the zest of one lemon and a few fresh mint leafs
5. Pour hot water over the cous cous mixture and let it sit for around 5 min. or until all the water is absorbed
6. Fluff the cous cous with a fork
7. When your aubergines are already baked, chop them into small pieces and add them to the cous cous
8. Season with your remaining spices, chopped mint leafs, juice of one lemon and generous amount of olive oil
9. Roughly chop the walnuts and add them on top
There you have it! A simple and delicious weekly dinner or lunch idea! Hope you enjoy it!
I don’t know why but when the beginning of Autumn comes, I get very nostalgic and that definitely reflects on my overall style. I’ve always adored vintage fashion pieces and from time to time when I lack a style inspiration, I look threw my mother’s clothes from the 90s or scroll threw some vintage fashion Instagram accounts. Soon enough I concluded that during this time of year my style consists mainly of second-hand clothing items or borrowed clothing pieces from my mother and grandma. For this reason, I decided to create this mini look book, in which I have styled my two current favorite vintage pieces. Along with my fellow friend and talented photographer @m.art.in.photo, we shot this vintage detail editorial.
The shirt in this look book is probably my favorite thrifted item. I got it about a month ago from a small second-hand boutique located in Sofia on Angel Kanchen street. Its vintage Ralph Lauren, which I got for 12 leva (or around 6 euro). If that isn’t a good deal, than I don’t know what is. The best thing about wearing the shirt is that whether you style it with jeans or a skirt, it adds a very subtle touch of class to the whole look.
The bag I got from a random shop in Fez, Morocco, but I am sure you can find a similar one almost every where since they are so trendy right now. For example I saw nice models in Zara.
The jeans were worn by my mother about 20 years ago and have stayed in her closet ever since. About a year ago, she gave them to me and until now, they are one of my most worn piece. I think that they are the perfect denim color and compliment my style and fit really well.
I really hope you enjoyed this mini look book. If you would like to see more amazing photos, go follow @m.art.in.photo on Instagram!
In the beginning of August my two best friends from middle school and I spontaneously decided to pack our suitcases and go on a low-budget trip to Rome. Since we all had visited the city before, we really wanted to experience Rome in a more local way and do things off the beaten touristy track. Although it was a bit hard to avoid all the touristy sights, we still managed to see the city in an entirely new light.. In this blog post I am going to share with you my favorite things we did in Rome and I would strongly recommend you doing at least a few if visiting the Italian capital.
1. Explore the local districts of the city – Apart from its beautiful center, Rome has many other neighborhoods such as Trappicino, San Lorenzo and etc.. They are often underestimated or unknown by most tourists. My personal favorite district was Trastevere. Situated on the other side of the river, Trastevere is full with small boutiques, local restaurants and bars, and breathtaking historical buildings. While we were there we also walked around the Botanical garden, which unfortunately didn’t have such a wide variety of plants, but was still a nice place for wandering around and taking cool pictures.
2. Do your sightseeing at night – As you know Rome has become one of the most preferred and common tourist destinations in the world. Due to its many historical sights the capital is filled with tourists all year round. If you are a person who dislikes crowded and hectic places, but still want to explore the ancient sights, then going on a night trip through the city is your savior. After sun dawn, at around 11/12 at night, most of the tourists are already exhausted from their long day of sightseeing and go back to their hotel rooms. At this time the streets get emptier and you can really get a close look of some of Rome’s most famous sights. All the buildings and monuments are lit up nicely and in my opinion look even better than during the day. If you are not a night owl and care about your good night sleep, another good time to avoid the touristy crowds, is really early in the morning.
3. Simply wander – The city is full with small streets and hidden corners, so don’t be scared to get lost. When wandering in the small streets without a guided way you never know what you might find. What my girls and I loved to do was to sneak in some of the buildings when the door was open and sit at the patio of the building, if of course there was one. And even if at some moment you feel too lost, don’t worry about asking a local to show you the way. Italians are known to be very friendly and warm, so I am sure that they would love to help you.
4. Eat – You already are aware that Italian cuisine is awarded to be one of the best and most adored in the world. When staying in its capital, you shall forget about dieting and truly enjoy all the food choices you have. Wherever you turn around you can smell and taste amazing and reasonably priced pasta, pizza and gelato.
5. Start your morning at a local cafe – Another very common thing you will find everywhere around Rome is good coffee. To be honest, the best coffee is not at a fancy cafe or at a hipster trendy café. If you really want to sip on some real Italian espresso, go to your next door cafe and enjoy your 80 cent coffee alongside some delicious homemade pastry.
6. Grab a drink and hang out in Piazza Madonna dei Monti – Rione Monti is a very trendy neighborhood among young Romans. There, the locals like to shop in the alternative boutiques or hang out with their friends after work or on the weekends. After the sun sets down, the small square turns into a vibrant meeting point for creative and stylish people. My girlfriends and I decided to walk around Monti and eat some pizza and pasta at local Italian restaurant. After fulfilling our stomachs with delicious Italian goodness we went to buy some ice-cream from “Fatamorgana”(outrageous flavors) and sat with a bottle of wine at the piazza. While drinking my wine and chatting with my girlfriends, for just a moment I felt as if I was living in some kind of parallel perfect world.
7. Rent a bike – my best friend is a really big fan of biking in general, so when she heard that we have a bike rental place just a few blocks away from our airbnb, she just couldn’t miss that opportunity. At first I was a bit skeptical to ride a bike in Rome, because most of the streets are very small and crowded and also there aren’t many special biking routes. Surprisingly, at the end of the day, I was actually happy with the whole biking experience. Not only that it saved us time and money from going to one point to another, but we also rode along the river, where there were not as many people and you could get a beautiful look of the city. If you don’t feel sure in your biking skills, you could also sign up for a guided biking tour!
Places we ate at: Frigidarium – Rome’s first gelateria
Ginger – great place for a healthy meal
Fatamorgana – extraordinary and non-traditional ice-cream flavors
Bonci Pizzarium – most famous pizza place in Rome and a definitive must on your foodie list
Obica – mozzarella bar – great place for cocktails and finger food
That’s all from our small vacation in Rome. Hope this non-touristy tips really help experience the city in a whole new and exciting way.
Oh London! One of Europes liveliest cities. A city where you can never get bored, every day there is an event happening or a new trendy bar or restaurant is opening. All the different mixes of cultures and nationalities, which fulfill the British capital, have made its food scene so popular all around the world. Home of exactly 70 Michelin starred restaurants London is every foodies dream destination.. Unfortunately in most cases a meal at those restaurants costs a fortune and after paying your bill there, you will probably have to live on toasts and canned soup for the next week. Luckily the inhabitants of the city have figured out a smart and cheap way in which you can try and enjoy incredibly delicious gourmet-worthy food, without doing a serious damage to your wallet. It’s a well-known fact that London’s street food scene is growing and growing and the standards of the food trucks and stalls are rising higher ans higher. Most of the street food markets are crowded with people, who love the mixture between well-prepared food with a friendly atmosphere. Due to this fact New markets are popping up all around London with more street food vans and vendors offering all type of British and international cuisine. Whether you are craving Korean fried chicken or some classic fish and chips, London’s street food scene has it all. During my recent visit to the vibrant capital I made it my goal to make a special guide for all of you curious foodie lovers and guide you through some of Londons best street food markets.
1. Borough market – Established in the 1850s, Borough market still remains the most preferred market in this metropolitan capital. Every day you can see massive crowds of hungry locals and tourists, who are on the hunt for the best street food. From locally grown fruits and veggies to international delicacies, vegan dishes, a range of spices and Asian street food, there is plenty of delicious indulgences, which you can try at one of Londons oldest street food markets. During all my visits to London, I have always taken some spare time and go to this market. Every special treat I have tried has always left me more than satisfied, but honestly my favorite thing about Borough are the free food gourmet samples.
2. Maltby street food market – Just a few minutes away from Borough, you will find yourself in this small outdoor market. Hiding between the big modern buildings Maltby market offers all sorts of incredible foods and beverages, which will satisfy every foodies expectations. Opened about 8 years ago the market has already become a well-known weekend destination and can get pretty crowded when the sun comes out. When we went there we were quite hungry, so predictably we went a bit over board with our orders. We wanted to taste as much as we could, so everyone got something different. I personally am a big fan of gyozas, so when I saw a food stall, which specialized in gyozas, I immediately pulled my wallet and got their bento box. It costed me exactly 10 pounds, but the taste and the portion size were worth it. We also got some Korean fried curry chicken, grilled cheese sandwich with chorizo and my absolute favorite duck burger with goat cheese. Maltby market may look small in comparison to some other markets, but offers a rather wide range of food choices.
3. Shoreditch boxpark – Heading to East London(the hip side of the city), you shall surely make a pit stop at the Shoreditch boxpark. This contemporary art building made out of shipping containers plonked underneath the well-known Shoreditch High Street Overground Station is known to be Londons first pop up mall. On The second floor of the unusual “mall” you can experience several food and beverage stalls all hidden in small containers. The food park is home of the famous bubble waffle ice-cream, dirty fries and many other international stalls. The dish that blew my mind was the vegan pad-Thai from “Cookdaily”, which contained plant-based prawns. Having my first bite from this vegan madness, I couldn’t even realize that the prawn didn’t come directly from the sea. It really looked, tasted and even had the same texture as a real one. Even my father and sister, who are the biggest meat lovers I know couldn’t spot the difference.
4. Old Spitalfields market – Next stop on your foodie trip should be Spitalfields market. The market is one of Londons busiest shopping destinations and as you could probably guess it also has an amazing food court. Whether you are in the mood for something healthier like a poke bowl or want to enjoy a special meal on your cheat day, you will find several food options for every taste. My family and I are big fans of Asian cuisine, especially the dumplings. For this reason we decided to get the shrimp wontons with chili sauce from the “Dumpling shack”.
5. Brick lane market – Just next to Spitalfields market you will find yourself in the buzzing Brick lane market. The market is known best for its wide range of trendy vintage clothes. Despite that you can also enjoy a changing selection of street food that will keep you well-fueled while you browse through the several second-hand shops and retro goodies. I personally snacked on some sweet potato fries.
6. Kerb Camden market – the last stop on our street food adventure was Kerb in Camden market. From Chinese to French, KERB street food market holds 34 food stalls, which all offer mouth-watering dishes from all around the world. The food choices are endless and will leave even the pickiest eater happy. After wandering around the food stalls and trying to decide what I want to eat, I finally chose the atomic cookie ice-cream from “Chin Chin Labs” I enjoyed my scientific food creation along the beautiful canal.
Two days ago I came back from one of the most exciting and unforgettable trips in my life. For my 18th birthday I wanted to do something special. My best friend Rumi, my parents and I wanted to experience what the country of Morocco hides. We stayed in the oriental paradise for a week in total and traveled more than 600km. For me Morocco was a journey to discovering a whole new world full with vibrant culture and enriched history. Every day we stopped at a different city or town in order to make the most of our short stay and fill it with as many fun activities and beautiful sights as possible. The first stop of our Moroccan route was the famous city Marrakech or as otherwise known the pink city (since all the buildings are in pink). Marrakech is the perfect mix between authenticity and modernism and that’s why it is the country’s most preferred city by tourists and locals. With just a 2 day stay planned for our visit there, here is how our 24 hours in Marrakech looked like.
11:00 – Le jardin Majorelle – We kick started our day off with this beautiful green paradise from the 1920s. Planted with more than 300 different plants and trees from all around the globe, this breathtaking oasis left me in awe. Honestly I had never seen something as stunning and aesthetically pleasing for the eye in my life. All the colorfully painted buildings contrasting with the different nuances of leafy green make this whole garden a magnificent piece of art. You could never guess that such a hectic and loud city as Marrakech can hide an entire hidden oasis behind some walls. I really do recommend you booking tickets in advance since Jardin Majorell is one of the city’s most famous sights and the wait can get pretty annoying.
12:00 – After walking and enjoying our time in the calming gardens we headed next door to the well-known museum of one of the world’s best designer brands-YSL. For those of you who are not aware, the fashion designer spent a lot of time in Marrakech and that was his influence for many of his most successful fashion pieces. 50 years after his first visit in 1966 this modern house has now been turned into a museum, dedicated to the work of the fashion legend. Looking carefully you can notice that the outside is supposed to evoke weft and wrap fabric, while the inside evokes the lining of a couture jacket. The rooms in the house are filled with inspiring design pieces and explain a more about the life and career of YSL himself. Even if you are not a fashion guru, the museum by all means is a sight worth seeing, even if it is just to admire its mesmerizing architecture and breathtaking interior.
13:30 – After doing some cultural sightseeing in the more civil part of Marrakech we headed to the old town (the medina). Surrounded by crowds of people, shops with cheeky traders, bikes and mopeds, we wandered in the streets for a few hours. Thanks to our awesome tour guide we even got the opportunity to visit some of the local firms and learn how carpets and cosmetics are being made. Since Morocco is known for its craftsmen and handmade goodies I was very intrigued to see how all those things were actually made. We also bought a bunch of small souvenirs, spices and for a second almost a carpet, so I warn you to keep in mind that you easily may end up buying a lot of unnecessary things. Also don’t hesitate to bargain since most of the traders will probably give you a higher price just because they recognized you are a tourist.
bread stored at the local bakery
15:00 – Around that time we realized we were starving, so we sat at Terrasse des épices . Since it was a roof top restaurant we enjoyed our incredibly delicious Moroccan lunch while looking at the medina from above. Following getting full with all the oriental dishes from the menu we still wanted to go somewhere and try the well known drink of Moroccan – mint tea. The perfect place for sipping on some tea and escaping a bit from the hustle and bustle of the old town are the so called “Riads”. Translated from Arabic it means a large traditional house built around a central courtyard. However in the last few years most of the Riads left in the medina are turned into hotels, guesthouses or even shops. First we went to Jurdin Secret – a very big Riad renovated in the 20th century and works as a museum now. The courtyard holds two big stunning gardens and is perfect for taking nice pictures. Afterwards we headed to Riad Palais Sebban to relax for a bit and finally drink some of this magical tea. The space has actually three Riads inside with a shared pool and restaurant. It even has a big rooftop where you can sunbath and are gifted with a panoramic view of Marrakech.
entry way of the riad
le jardin secret
17:00 – Palais de la Bahia – Our next stop was Palais de la Bahia(the kings palace), which is now turned into a museum and is open for visitors all year round. There we really felt what it feels like to be a royalty in the monarchy. Probably the thing that I liked the most there was the calming blue colors of the walls inside and the several spacious courtyards.
19:30 – Before going back to our hotel we had only one last stop left and that was Jemaa el-Fnaa . We wanted to experience the city at night as locals, so that is why we headed to the main square for dinner. We went there at sunset in order to see how the market changes during the day compared to the night. Same as in the medina it was full with all kinds of people. Despite the surrounding chaos I found the whole experience very entertaining. All around us there were locals dressed in traditional costumes, ladies insisting on painting your hands with Henna. There were men holding monkeys and snakes and then putting them on a random walking tourists’ head, just for a picture. Keep in mind that most of the Moroccans at the market are poor, so keep your belongings close to you at all time and don’t forget that even a picture with a monkey costs money. After fooling around with the locals we finally went to my favorite part of the day – the food market. There you can find everything from fresh fruit and veggies to food stalls offering all sorts of traditional and exotic meals. I was even brave enough to try snails, which honestly tasted better than they looked.
Well, after our day full with activities we went to bed exhausted and got ready for the early morning call.
As I mentioned in my previous blog post a few weeks ago I went on a small trip to Copenhagen. Despite the many mesmerizing sights we saw, the city also managed to satisfy our food cravings. Copenhagen is known to be one of Europe’s most preferred culinary destinations. Home of the world famous restaurant Noma, the vibrant city also has a lot of other incredible places, where you can try great food without needing to spend a fortune. If you know me, you are probably aware that food is my one and only true love and wherever I go, I always make a special list with certain food places I must try. Before even booking our airbnb I had already picked every single cafe, bar or restaurant, which we were going to visit and eat in.
1. Grød – The name translated from Danish means porridge and it reveals that the menu is based mainly on porridge. But forgetting about the sticky and tasteless oatmeal that your mom used to make you eat as a child, Grod has managed to make this dull looking breakfast item into something snazzy and insanely delicious. With its unique and creative porridge bowls, Grød has deserved its reputation for serving the best oatmeal in the world. All day round you can see a large queue of hungry clients waiting for their morning booster. After 20 minutes of questioning what to get, I finally made my choice – Oat Porridge 1(their signature item), which is based on water and whole milk, topped with apples, homemade caramel sauce, roasted almonds and cinnamon. I have no words to describe how good it was. Not only that it kept me energized for hours, but it also satisfied every single one of my taste buds. Open until 19:00 you can enjoy special breakfast, lunch and dinner menus in their 3 locations spread all around Copenhagen.
2. Falafel factory – If there is one food item, which I could have for the rest of my life that would most likely be falafels. As soon as I saw that there is a special eatery in Copenhagen that specializes in falafels, I was too interested to not go there. Falafel factory is a small fast food restaurant where you can customize your falafel pita as you may desire. For your base you can choose from three type of falafels and add all kinds of toppings and secret-recipe sauces. I personally went for a spicier option, with which I was extremely satisfied. If you are on a budget, want to have a quick bite or just love falafels internally as I do, “Falafel Factory” is a great option.
3. Next door cafe – As you could assume from the name, the cafe literally looks like your neighbor’s house. Starting from the cozy interior, the place really does remind you of a living room and has a very home-like and hipster vibe. Located on Lardbornstrasse, which is in the heart of Copenhagen, the cafe welcomes locals and tourists with freshly brewed coffee and delicious homemade food. I was impressed mostly by the artsy decor, and unusual details such as the notes, drawings, and pictures all tucked in by previous customers under the glass table. The cafe offers traditional breakfasts such as American pancakes and scrambled eggs, which all follow a recipe by the owner.
4. Moller – Winner of the title – The best breakfast in Copenhagen no doubt about it. The restaurant hides in the heart of the hip district Nørrebro and offers breakfast all day, every day. You can simply pick from their list with breakfast possibilities, tick your choice and hand it to the waiter. Within just a few minutes of waiting you will receive the most scrumptious breakfast. We ordered quite a few things both sweet and savory options, which all overwhelmed our expectations. Everything was brilliantly prepared and I personally can’t decide which food item is my favorite.
5. The food club – The only rule you have to follow if you want to be a member of the food club is to come with an empty stomach. Part of the Danish restaurant chain Madklubben, The food club is an upscale buffet packed with great food and beverages, varying throughout the week. The buffet focuses on sustainability and is all organic produced. To enjoy the wide array of incredibly delicious dishes and drinks you need to pay a fixed price depending on the time you spend there. Since it was an all you can eat restaurant, I went all out and stuffed my plate with everything that the buffet offered. The only thing that I was disappointed by was the lack of dessert options, but everything else compensated for it as the food was wonderful.
We also visited lot’s of other great food places in Copenhagen, but these 5 were my top choices.
Two weeks ago two of my dreams came true. I did a girls trip with my favorite person in the whole world – my cousin and together we visited the happiest city on Earth. If you have ever been to Copenhagen you will for sure remember your first time there. This utterly beautiful city is a stunning combination between the safety and calmness of a small town mixed with the buzz and vibrancy that matches the major European cities. Despite the cold weather, Copenhagen managed to warm my heart up. It was a true inspiration for me. Everywhere you turn you can see a stunning building in the minimalistic traditional Scandinavian style, smell the freshly roasted coffee coming from the nearest coffee joint or sense all the latest fashion trends worn by the people around you. Copenhagen has many fun activities to offer concluding that 3 days were definitely not enough, but here are the things you must see and do in Denmark’s capital.
1. Tovehallerne – Yes, you guessed it, our first stop was the most famous food market in Copenhagen. Surrounded by awesome food stalls, which offered traditional and non-traditional Danish dishes and drinks, we absolutely loved the market! It hides inside two big warehouses and you can choose to eat whatever you are craving. Since we got there early in the day with empty stomachs we wanted to buy something for breakfast, so we tried the most incredible porridge from Grød.
2. Botanical gardens – This is the perfect spot to visit when the weather in Copenhagen is not the best for a long day outside. Whether you are a fan of plants or not, the botanical gardens are absolutely free and perfect for taking cool pictures. Entering you feel as if you have teleported in some kind of tropical island and you can easily forget about the freezing wind outside.
3. The round tower – The architecture of the tower and the panoramic view from the top make “The round tower” one of the most visited sights in Copenhagen and certainly one of my favorite ones. We were lucky enough to catch a clear sky and admire the whole city from above.
4. Strøget – Strøget is Copenhagen’s longest pedestrian streets and is full with shops from high-end brands to not too expensive ones. If you want do some shopping, Strøget is the place to go.
5. Nyhavn – Probably this is one of the most iconic sceneries of Copenhagen. You can see it on every single postcard and travel guide about Copenhagen. Honestly it really looks just like the photos and maybe even better. The colorful buildings contrasting with the grey sky are a real eye-catcher. You can also sit at a cafe by the lake and enjoy the beautiful landscape while sipping on Danish coffee.
6. Glyptoteket – When we were in Copenhagen the weather was -3 and we were too tired and cold to continue walking around the city. We wanted to find a museum, where we could explore a nice exposition and warm ourselves up. I googled a few free museums and the one that popped out first was the New Carlsberg museum. At first I thought that I would be rather bored, because I am not that much into sculpture, but I ended up enjoying it immensely. The museum hosted a fascinating exhibit about the development and influence of art throughout the centuries. Even if you aren’t that much into paintings, you will be mesmerized by the entire design of the museum inside, which is a piece of art by itself. Giant white hallways, calming winter garden and several books about interior and architecture will make you want to extend your stay at the museum even more.
*it is free on Tuesday for everyone
7. Try Danish cuisine – Were you even in Copenhagen if you didn’t try their famous smørrebrød(open faced sandwich) or traditional Danish hot-dog. Despite all these traditional Danish dishes, the Nordics are also well-known for the so called New Nordic cuisine and you can find a Michelin-Star restaurant all around the city. A great place to try outstanding new nordic cuisine on a reasonable price is Manfreds. It was recommended to us by a friend of mine, who lives in Copenhagen. Sadly when we wanted to have dinner there it was already fully booked.
8. Walk around Nørrebro and Vasterbro – We wanted to escape the crowded tourist attractions and experience the city as locals. This two districts are ultra hip, trashy and trendy. Some of Copenhagen”s best bars, restaurants and vintage shops are spread all around the neighborhoods, so by any chance leave a day off just for exploring them.
9. Tivoli Gardens – Tivoli is Europe’s oldest theme park. It is full of amazing attractions for young and adults. Unfortunately it closes from November until April because of the weather conditions, so we weren’t able to go. You can still admire its beauty from the fences or have a bite at the Tivoli Food Market, which offers all kinds of international foods.
10. Christiana – I was really debating whether or not I should include this neighborhood in the blog post, because to be honest it didn’t live up to my expectations. You probably have heard about “Christiana” – the district in Copenhagen where everything is legal. Walking down the streets you can easily buy marijuana from the sellers and smoke it within the area. If not you can still look and photograph the hand-painted abandoned military barracks and “homemade” houses. Trust me it is not exciting as it sounds. Maybe before it really did represent the hippie culture, but now it has become too much of a tourist attraction.
That’s all from me. Hope this blog post helps you organize your trip to Copenhagen or makes you wanna go there.