About Cate & the IDB

About the IDB

Welcome to the International Desserts Blog (IDB)! Here you’ll find: 

  1. Easy & delicious dessert recipes. My recipes look and taste amazing but are easy to make from scratch using simple whole(some) ingredients you probably already have in your pantry. 
  2. Travel info, itineraries, hacks, and tips for Germany, Europe, and beyond. If you’re a solo or couples traveler who appreciates good food, authentic cultural experiences, and affordable luxury (you have a budget but you splurge on the important things), you’ll love the IDB.

Baking and traveling are two of my favorites activities, and I’m thrilled that you’re joining me on this sweet adventure.

About Cate

Yes, those are real candles and that’s real icing on my cake hat!

When I travel, I love exploring the local culture through food, especially a country’s sweet treats. You can learn so much about a place by looking at how they use (or don’t use) sugar!

When not traveling, I feed my global heart by making travel-inspired desserts in my adopted home of North Carolina, USA.

After growing up in Oregon, I spent some of my teens and 20s living, studying, and then working in Germany, taking epic train trips all over Europe (like Germany to Greece and back), and making cake hats with real icing and candles . 😀 

Since then, my 20+ year career in international education has taken me beyond Europe to South America, Central America, the Caribbean, Australia, and all over North America.  It’s been a pretty sweet career.

My husband, Aaron, has been my favorite travel partner for over 21 years. I was pretty sure Aaron was the one about an hour after meeting him at a random grad school party, but I knew for sure when, a year into our relationship, I said hey, how about you quit your job so we can travel for a while and he didn’t think I was totally crazy.

And then he even jumped at the chance to take another travel sabbatical a few years later! I’d travel anywhere in the world with Aaron but I’m also perfectly happy to grab my backpack and hit the road solo when he can’t or doesn’t want to go with me.

While I’m a life-long travel lover, I’m definitely a late-bloomer when it comes to baking. Besides cakes in my Easy Bake Oven and the odd batch of chocolate chip cookies, I had zero interest in baking while growing up. In fact, I rejected all things domestic until well into my 30s.

Several years ago, while studying for my PhD comprehensive exams (in German Applied Linguistics) I decided I needed a hobby that didn’t involve highlighting things in books or analyzing data. Inspired by the beautiful birthday cakes my mom made while I was growing up, I took a cake decorating class.

That’s when I discovered how much I enjoy making and sharing sweet treats. I started baking cakes and cupcakes to share with friends, family, and colleagues. Then I realized I could make all of my favorite European treats in my own little kitchen in North Carolina. 

Now I happily spend my free time cooking and baking, compare cookie sheets on Amazon for fun, and have gotten pretty good at all things domestic, much to my surprise! These days I appreciate a well stocked and organized kitchen as much as a well-packed carry-on. 😀

Ready to start your sweet adventure?

Go to my guide for getting started on IDB or check out one of these popular posts:

Be sure to grab your copy of my free European Christmas Cookies ebook!