Welcome! If you love travel and photography and are looking for new places to explore, this is the right place for you! And of course a person gotta eat so why not follow in my footsteps, visit some exotic markets, get inspired and enjoy original and healthy recipes from my extensive collection of cookbooks.
Trying to lead a healthier lifestyle has also led me on a very important quest, finding small family owned businesses who work hard to produce healthier food, free of pesticides and chemicals. People that often had a strong connection to the land but also those who didn’t but reinvented their lives to benefit us all. There will be many more stories in the future that may inspire you to start your own quest based on where you live.
And now a little about me. Hi there! My name is Maria and I come from Portugal. You may wonder why I started this blog. Writing is important to me but above everything I wanted to share my experiences. Not only with you but also with my sweet daughter who is five years old. There is a whole life before her that she doesn’t yet know about. A life her mother led and that one day I want her to be able to know better. You see 20 years ago I started a long journey that has led me to different continents where I was able to travel, live and explore places I only dreamt of as a child. Coming from Portugal and having the legacy left by our famous explorers, the sea always made me dream of seeing what lay beyond it.
I have to be honest, being an expat for so many years is not easy at times as you feel you no longer belong anywhere. However, when you weigh everything, just to have the unique opportunity to get to know other cultures, experience different flavors and meet wonderful people, you can only be grateful.
In view of new conflicts and wars, some places, particularly in the Middle East, may not be accessible to travelers anymore. Some of them I had the good fortune to visit and explore and I feel it is important to share with you what I saw and the people I met on the way. Some may not even be with us anymore but they touched me and they will always be part of my happiest memories.
Many memories come from experiences at local markets. Visiting markets and looking for spices were always my favorite activities no matter where I am. Markets are often the heart of a city and are fascinating places where you can learn a lot about the people and the gastronomy of a country. There you can follow the seasons and find out each year which produce fared better. Smelling, touching and choosing your favorites is very special. You also discover new vegetables and fruits you didn’t know existed from other parts of this globalized world. It enriches your life and even your cooking skills.
For the last five years I lived in Mexico, a country that touched me profoundly. Its rich culture, traditions and its wonderful people inspired me to write many times about what I saw, felt and cooked. I hope those of you who are visiting for the first time can take the time to discover a bit of Mexico through my eyes, my feelings and flavors.
I am now back in Europe, back to my husband’s country, Austria. I have never lived in Vienna before although we would come each year on vacation. I am European but I am also aware this is a distinct reality from my own in Portugal. There were challenges to face and obstacles to overcome but there has also been a lot of discovery and inspiration for new posts.
The closer proximity to my country has equally inspired me to write more often about Portugal. The flavors smells and gastronomy of both also inspire me to cook. But depending on my mood and what I will find in the market, other landscapes will definitely be part of my cooking journey. I always need a bit of spice in my life.
Currently moving to Iran …
Welcome to the world of Travelling Spice, I hope you will be part of my journey!