The Seasoned Traveler

Recipes and remedies using herbs, spices, and other natural ingredients from the world's pantry


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Cherry Phyllo Tartlets with Lemon Mascarpone Cream

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A while back, I made some phyllo tartlets with some of the first fresh strawberries of the season and loved them for both their flavor and ease. I recently made some with cherries, after cooking them slightly and making a simple syrup from their juices. The tart-sweet cherries combined with the lemon mascarpone cream reminded me of a cheesecake, and the crisp phyllo gave it a great crunch. Just three bites and I was reaching for another one… Continue reading

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Rainy Day Mixed Berry & Spice Bars

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I made these berry and spice bars hoping they would be chewy & crisp, the kind of bars we could pack on a picnic or bring along for a walk in the forest. They instead turned out crumbly and gooey, best eaten right at home, which is what we did during a rainy afternoon yesterday. I’m still on the lookout for a packable & crisp fruit bar for our outings (do you have a good recipe to share?), but these tasty, crumbly ones with jammy fruit oozing out the sides made for a sweet afternoon of nibbling. They’re also a great way to use up a stash of frozen fruit, which I did, to make room for berry-picking season. Continue reading


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Norwegian Rhubarb Cake with Cardamom

RhubarbCakeTST2 I started daydreaming about this Norwegian Rhubarb Cake, or rabarbrakake, the moment I saw it on Outside Oslo, a lovely Scandinavian food blog. The beautiful photos drew me in, and the description of its simplicity had me hooked. Norwegian? Rhubarb? Cake? Sounds like a perfect treat to celebrate the homecoming of my part-Norwegian husband who loves rhubarb. I love that this is not overly sweet, and the cake stays moist and buttery on the inside, with little jewels of tart, soft rhubarb, and a golden, slightly crisp edge. I added my own touch of cardamom to the batter, because I usually associate Scandinavian baking with a good excuse for a dash of my favorite spice, and have to say this cake lived up to my daydreams. Maybe too much so, because, waking from my reveries, I realized the cake was half gone before the hubby came home… Oops! Welcome Home, Honey!

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Strawberry Phyllo Tartlets with Lemon Mascarpone Cream

StrawberryPhylloTSTCrispy phyllo shells, lemony mascarpone filling, fresh strawberries — and the best part is that these little treats couldn’t be simpler. Great for a spring get-together, and you can mix up the topping with other seasonal fruit for an even more colorful presentation. Enjoy!

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Thanksgiving Dish Roundup

My philosophy on Thanksgiving preparations is to go for simple, comforting, and familiar. If you want to get fancy, get out your nicest tableware and table linens, decorate with a festive centerpiece and maybe focus on one new dish. This year, I’m trying out a butternut squash-apple-cranberry stuffing, and if all goes well, I’ll share the recipe here for next year. In the meantime, if you are looking for another dish to round out your Thanksgiving table, here are some tried-and-true Seasoned Traveler favorites for soup, salad and sides this time of year. Continue reading


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Cardamom Ice Cream with Warm Ginger Drizzle

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It seemed the sky could not make up its mind today, changing from warm morning sunshine to chilly afternoon downpours, then back to sunshine. I was content watching these transformations from inside as I made — and taste-tested — a batch of cardamom ice cream and a warm ginger drizzle to top it. Continue reading


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Parenting and Letting Go: Lessons from a Chocolate Cloud Cake

IMG_4422On occasions that call for a special dessert, I most often turn to a recipe for Chocolate Cloud Cake in my Nigella Lawson cookbook, Nigella Bites. It’s a bit labor-intensive, but not dauntingly so. It requires some focused attention to let the chocolate melt slowly and incorporate other ingredients, a vigorous whisking of the egg whites to achieve the right structure, and a gentle touch to fold the whites into the chocolate just so. Continue reading