The Bathtub Experiment


Wednesday evening. After a rather long day, morning commute to work, lunch and wandering around the city I finally got home, dropped my keys and bags of shopping on the floor. I was tired and feeling very stiff on my shoulders. I needed something but didn't know how to put it in an idea. I needed a warm bath.

The thing is, I always get the perfect bathbombs but never use them. I store them in airtight plastic bags and only sniff them really carefully on special occassions or pretty bad days. Yeah. That is me. I never get the chance to use them or I am always in a hurry, to take off my makeup, to wash my hair, get to bed early etc. There is always a really good excuse for me not to get in the bathtub. But today felt different. I needed to do something soothing for myself. I needed some time to pamper myself, to feel brand new again. 
I thoroughly cleansed my face, put my hair up, lit a few candles and then run around like a headless chicken, setting the mood with good music, extremely hot water and ofcourse, picking the bathbomb for the night. If you are like me, you know what an important decision that is. After preparing everything it was finally time to get in. It felt so weird at first but oh, once I dipped my toes and slowly layed inside the tub I felt every little bad thought slip through and out of my mind. Closing my eyes, I let myself soak in the warm, creamy vanilla infused water and slowly forgot about anything that was currently stressing me out. I felt like I was outside my body. Thinking of nothing in particular. And I just sat there doing nothing. At first it felt weird and that is exactly the problem. 

This weird obsession of us, constantly checking our social profiles, tweeting, commenting, chatting, insta-storying.. It feels weird when your hands are soaking in a bathtub and you are doing nothing. Not even reading. It is almost like when you are out in the wilderness and can't connect to any wi-fis. And that is exactly the magic of the bathtub thing. You have a rare opportunity to connect with your own inner thoughts without constantly being interrupted by bleeps and clicks. Just let yourself be, in this glorious hot bathtub, surrounded by beautiful calming scents, touching your warm, soft skin and massaging your neck. Nothing can ruin that beautiful hour, not even the yelling neighbors, trust me. I am one not to ever just sit still, but tonight that was all I needed. 

So, hop in your bathtubs, people. Fill them up with hot water and throw in a good old Lush bathbomb and just let your soul soak until the poets run out of rhymes. Let your mind wander and get ready for  the best night's rest. 

In case you are wondering, I used the experimenter bath bomb from Lush along with some jasmine bath salts from Apivita and also did a rose face mask while sipping on a herbal tea.

image via Pinterest

spring and cake parties


Spring is here and it is only logical to be planning the most girly and pastel color coded outdoor parties. Wooden tables and paper decorations alongside flowers in glass jars. I love blooms and blush pink peonies in every corner of my place. 
You can start arranging a friends gathering, by placing some fluffy pillows in your terrace. You don't have to make much of a fuss, just keep it casual and decorate with whatever you have hanging around. Paper plates and brightly colored napkins should do. If you are planning to host your friends in the afternoon make sure you can light up some tealights or even fairylights around! This will make everything look even cosier. 
As for the food, you should prepare something easy that doesn't require much of an effort. Stick with basic snacks and finger food that can easily be made ahead. That means you will have more time to prepare yourself but also, spend time with your guests! If you are looking for some inspiration you can check out my Savory board on Pinterest and browse around some really cool and healthy recipes!

pictures from Pinterest

Remember that hosting parties should be fun for both you and your guests! Don't stress, keep it simple and enjoy yourself! We should make the most out of Spring before it is quickly over. x

The Cake Party x Miss Bloom

 The Cake Party was feautured in lovely Miss Bloom! I wrote about how I started blogging and posting my recipes! This is a sneak peak but if you want to read all about the little things that make me happy, pop over to this link!

Festive Cakes


The holidays are all about good food, warm jumpers, twinkle ligths, and family gatherings. Wether you like spending this time of the year out partying with your gals or tucked under your duvets with good films, only one thing is for sure: you would love to come home to a scrumptious dessert! 

Here you will find the recipes for two of the yummiest holiday desserts. It is food for sharing, people! So, grab your spatula and read on!

Chocolate Goodness Walnut Cake

Cheers to a wonderful New Year!

yogurt and lemon curd cupcakes


Happy May and happy Friday everyone! This week I made those scrumptious yogurt cupcakes with lemon curd, topped with a generous dollop of whipped cream and fresh strawberries for La Grece J'aime. This dessert is perfect for warm afternoons, hanging out with your friends in the terrace... You can see the full recipe here.
I hope you got inspired for the upcoming World Baking Day on Sunday the 17th. Just have a look around and find the perfect recipe for you and pledge to bake for someone you love!
Happy baking everyone!

tahini and apple cake


Oh tahini, the paste of sesame dreams. I can't seem to stop eating it on toast let along putting it in cakes like this one. This is a recipe I recreated for La Grèce J'aime. Click to see the full recipe. Hope you enjoy on a rainy Sunday in bed along with your favorite happy read! (in this case my old copy of "Matilda")

Cold winter and almond tea


It is December, finally and what is better than cozying up to a hot cup of tea? It is time to snuggle up in your fluffiest jumper, wear shimmering eyeshadows and glitter, red lipstick and warm coats! This winter, my absolute favorite tea flavour of all is the almond tea, infused with some special spices. I can't wait enough to bake some christmas gingerbread cookies and spice cakes! Are you ready for Christmas? I am already unpacking the christmas boxes and the tree! Its going to be one sweet month full of sweets and recipes...Stay tuned and happy December!

Honey Apple Pancakes | La Grèce J'aime


A few months ago, I teamed up with the Greek site La Grèce J'aime and now I have my own column Annes Pastry Tales where, every month I come up with a recipe that includes a Greek ingredient for a sweet treat. 
Praising the chilly fall days I prepared a late brunch with Honey Apple Pancakes and lots of cinnamon sprinkled on top. 

Who could resist to this mouthwatering breakfast treat? You can see the whole recipe in the article I wrote on the site!

Cake Party visits London + travel tips


Hi friends! During my studies abroad, I had the most amazing opportunity to visit London with some of my friends. It was a  4 day trip at the end of May so we hoped the weather would be rather smooth.

The trip

I fell in love with London, since I visited it for the first time back in 2004, when I was a little kid. I wanted so much to go back sometime, and there it was, the chance that I have been waiting for for so long. I must warn you, I did all the tourist-y things, even though I had researched and found little hidden treasures from books and blogs. I just wish I would have watched Rachel Khoo's kitchen notebook: London, a few weeks before I went there!

I was on a strict budget (as always and like all students are!) so we had to stay at a horrible horrible hostel, in a room with  6 more strangers (yikes)! I must say that this could have been even more horrible that it actually was. It was the cheapest accommodation we could find that included breakfast and had a good location. The thing is, that you have to make some sacrifices in order to visit such an expensive city and still have money to move around and see places so, hostel it is! We weren't staying long at the room anyway and spent most of our time out and about in the city, so it was a successful choice that we made.

Getting here and there
It was a big adventure just to get there, since we took the Eurolines bus from Brussels, Belgium to London and it was a 7 hour trip (!). We still had to cross over the sea in a ferry boat and also we arrived in London at 6am when people still did their yoga and morning jogs in the parks! We weren't able to check-in so early,so we spent almost 3 hours sleeping-laying in Kensington Gardens that was just right above our hostel (great location, 3 minutes from metro).

Well, metro is the only thing you will need to get around in London, so I highly recommend you buy an Oyster card prior to your arrival (you can buy it online) or even when you arrive in London in your nearest train station. If you return your card before you leave you get 5 pounds back. Buying a 7 day card which costs approximately 40 pounds will save you enough money. You will be using the metro everywhere you go and that way you won't skip on culture or fun, trying to save money on tickets. You may think it is a lot to spend, but it is totally worth it since it will be your ultimate travel card!

Planning the perfect trip

 During my stay, I had a lot to visit and my days were full of action. I had noted a few bakeries that I HAD to see and a bunch of cool museums that I had visited in my last trip but needed to see again. I also visited a few cute bookstores and a flea market. Now, 4 days are nothing compared to the amount of things there are to see and do in a city like London, but this is what you get!

If you are staying only for a few days, like I was, make sure you fit in your schedule time for the magnificent museums and galleries, relaxation in the parks, visits to the flea markets, bakeries and cake shops and of course for a night out in the local pubs! I will make a little list with the places I really loved during my stay.

Cake shops and Bakeries

When it comes to a trip, the food is the first thing I will look up. I am such a foodie, I just can't stop staring at glass windows and menus at cool restaurants and cake shops. Keep in mind that proper restaurants tend to have more expensive menus, so if you choose one, take a look on the daily menu as this is often the cheapest option. For the rest of you, "eatcafes" are your place! Little coffee shops, that serve nice and hot cups of tea and coffee, along with freshly made sandwiches and lunch options such as salads, soups or even meat dishes, are a perfect choice.
I suggest you have a full English breakfast or a healthy midday brunch in a nice place, that will keep you full and energetic for the rest of the day. For lunch you can chose from a variety of street but healthy food, like vegetarian burgers, fresh juices, bagels and other local snacks.

For a cake stop you can visit the Hummingbird Bakery for fluffy and classic cupcakes. It is my favorite bakery and I have all their cookbooks-I am a big fan. Try the "Blackbottom cupcake" with chocolate and cheesecake base or the all time classics "Red Velvet cupcake" and "Carrot Cake cupcake" for which they are highly known. If your are taking it away you can visit the Notting Hill shop. Otherwise best visit the posh South Kensington shop where you will be able to sit as well.

at the Portobello Market in Notting Hill

Next for a more girly experience, Primrose Bakery is a must on your list. I have previously talked about it here. It is such a lovely place to be on a rainy Sunday afternoon. They have a great selection of delightful cakes, cupcakes and brownies. The best cupcake I tried was the "Aviation Cocktail cupcake" a cupcake infused with gin and lemon so tasty and tangy! Big winner, the yellow facade in the Primrose Hill shop.

Jamie Oliver's Cafe & Cookery School ... Notting Hill Gate

E5 Bakehouse is another gem of London. An artisan bakery and coffee shop, serving the best selection of their products. Their brunch is a real treat and everything is made from scratch by the wonderful staff. What I like best in this shop is the philosophy behind it all. Brilliant people, getting together to create products of high quality and taste. Be sure to try their fresh bread and daily brunch.

So, if you are a brunch person this is the second best place to be when in London! The Breakfast Club serves nothing less but the best brunch in town. Be sure to check it out.

And what is a trip to London without trying out some honest burgers? Honest Burgers give you nothing less than their title! Wonderful atmosphere and super helpful staff. There are a few options on their menu so that makes me think that the quality is top. Every burger is served with freshly made fries with herbs (a winner for sure). Try the homemade lemonade. Thumbs up for the cool music playing inside(Vampire Weekend, Youth Lagoon, Allah-Las...).

Culture and Art

Enough with the food already! We've got some serious stuff to do starting with the museums. Tate Modern, The National Gallery, the Museum of Natural History, the Museum of London, the Museum of Transportation, the British Museum, the Pollock's Museum are only a few of the choices you can make according to your interests and taste.
I highly recommend Tate Modern and the Museum of London, which was one of my favorite things to see in my trip. Just make sure you check out the temporary exhibitions and get your tickets on time! The wider range of the museums in London have free entrance (!) so you will not be waiting in terrible long lines to get in. Also, if you are visiting on Christmas, check out the opening hours since a lot tend to be closed on holiday days.

Snuggle up in a warm armchair with a cup of tea and flip through the pages of beautiful books. Most of the bookshops, let you sit and have a look in the books before you buy them. Others also have little coffee spots inside, so you can sit and enjoy your coffee along with the book you just bought. Perfect for rainy and hazy days!

The bookshops are so many and it depends on your interests and the location as well. Like a proper tourist that I am, I visited the Notting Hill bookshop and many others as well. There are plenty cosy bookshops all around town, like the "Books for Cooks" that spoke to my heart. Another popular is the "Brick Lane bookshop". I bought the "London Style Guide: Eat, Sleep, Shop" a real treat and treasure for me to keep. I like that I can flip through the pages from time to time and discover little London tips that only a local could know!
Lastly I have another trick up in my sleeve. You can't leave London without having an afternoon tea. You just can't. British Afternoon Tea Guide is an online guide for having some serious afternoon tea in London. Browse through the options and book online, for a luxurious little experience. British tea, is served in beautiful tables with mouthwatering delights such as fluffy cakes, scones with jams and fresh sandwiches. If you're a tea lover and want to indulge in some serious tea drinking with your gals, book now!

I hope I have given you a lot to think about and that this little "guide" will be of some help to some of you sometime in the future! London is a magnificent city, full of gems and secrets. Be sure to find them and maybe share them with us! Until then, lots of love.

xxx Anna

the spring & strawberry thing


 It has been almost two weeks since I got back from Belgium and I love it here. It is summer already, this means I missed spring for good but, I decided to bake a spring strawberry cake with fluffy cream to celebrate my comeback. This delicious recipe is from miss Pastaflora! If you can still get some strawberries on hand, bake this for sure! It is a razzle dazzle cake and you can make it a chocolate one as well! There are fresh strawberries inside the batter so that makes it extra special.
 Meanwhile, I am buried under piles of books and papers because it is exams period once again... Such a pity we can't enjoy the best of the weather strolling around the beach and making day trips.

I have decided to start my blog all over again, make a few changes here and there, give it a little makeover and start fresh. I will be posting more and I am already preparing posts from my trips all around Europe while I was away.

Stay tuned for more recipes and posts...