February 25, 2015

a tale of croissants

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We woke up in a tiny Saint Germain attic, crammed in clothes and bedsheets, excited that we had come to meet Paris, this eternal lover, even just for a day, even just for a business meeting . We had fallen asleep to the sounds of a jazz station mixed with drunken street quarrels, hungry and excused and had to suffer a ten minute walk to the closest boulangerie, to fish our breakfast, and the Sunday paper.

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Tati formed her french beret, which she was probably wearing overnight, and rushed for our lifesaving project, while I was searching the fridge and the cupboards for some war supplies. She returned holding a bouquet of almond and butter croissants, a pair of British spreads and the news under her armpit. There was no time left for a city stroll or a morning coffee at La Palette, so we enjoyed a puff pastry breakfast in our apartment over a laptop and tons of emails. (not quite obvious in those pictures, i know!)

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Together with the baguette, the croissant is the pride of French cuisine and a daily habit for the nation. It’s been a French national product since 1920 and they say that it actually comes from Austria, during the Ottoman siege of Vienna. The main ingredient in this soft pastry is unsalted butter, which is spread on the dough before baking. This is what gives the croissant its flaky, buttery flavor. In France, the croissant is often filled with jam and jelly at home. In some countries, like Italy, croissants are sold in bakeries already filled. In Germany, Nutella is the most popular filling!

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As you realised this is not a recipe post, because making the perfect puff pastry needs time and patience. Εxcuse us for not getting into the kitchen today, we had so little in time in such a big city and too many croissants crumbs to remove from our camera!

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photos by Gertrude Gary Milk, thank you Tati for being the best company!

( post created especially for teapot.gr )

February 22, 2015

lost in the woods!

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Bivouac is located around an old stone farmhouse five miles from Masham, on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, a picturesque spot on the Swinton Estate with stunning views all year round.

bio2At this off grid accommodation you can choose between oversize tents (Meadow Yurts), wooden cabins (Woodland Shacks), and bunk beds in the brick dormitory (Bunk Barn). Bursting with charm and stunning views Biovouak is the place where you always wanted to spend a peaceful and relaxing week in absolute heaven.

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Bivouac is all about getting back to basics and enjoying the natural things in life, there is an abundance of local places to explore and an array of activities to get stuck into. The historic folly Druid’s Temple and the surrounding woodland makes for a fantastic starting point for any number of excursions across the moorland, or an ideal location for a short stroll drinking in the natural beauty of the forest and spectacular views.

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The beating heart of the operation is the Café. a beautifully converted and welcoming barn with a chandelier of mismatched bulbs, a mural of British birds and lots of books and board games. On warm summer days visitors can sit out on the patio and enjoy a cup of tea or light snack while being soothed by the spectacular views down into the valley.

bio15 bio16 bio17So why ask for more when you can gaze at the stars through the skylight set into each shack ceiling? Light up your stove and laze in your antique rocking chair. That’s a luxury!

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For more information and rates visit The Bivouak, Bivouac at Druid’s Temple, Masham, Ripon, North Yorkshire HG4 4JZ , email: hello@thebivouac.co.uk

(photos by Toast)