VENETIAN-STYLE ‘CICCHETTI’ & BAGPIPES in COMACCHIO

After a difficult year last year (I apologise for no postings) I asked for 2017 to be full of new and exciting experiences and….wham!.. the universe came right back with its own humorous response…. ..Eels and Zampogna for you!  Eels or ‘anguille’ are pretty self-explanatory and they came mixed in with other deep-fried fish &…

ITALIAN MOUNTAIN FOOD: ‘PIZZOCCHERI’ with ZUCCA, CAVOLO NERO & PRIMROSES

  “Arriverdeci Winter” – “Benvenuto Spring” I always have a slight moment of panic when trekking through forests and mountains we haven’t been in before. It’s always exhilarating (actually mainly afterwards) but there’s that tiny niggle of fear that we could be on the wrong track – after all you can’t see anything through the trees –…

ITALIAN PORCINI TEMPURA with PROSECCO & BALSAMIC VINEGAR DIP

  I’m up to my ears in Porcini – not a phrase that’s often bandied about these days  – especially outside Italy! I frightened the guy at my local market the other day with my excitement at the sight of fresh porcini sitting on his stall. He poor man was mortified as he thought I’d spied some horrific creepy-crawly…

GUEST BLOGS: ‘THE ALTA LANGHE’ and ‘RECIPES FROM PIEDMONT’

   I know, I know!……I’m sorry I’m way behind on my blog but I?m working on the next one right now and thereafter I should be up to speed! I haven’t been idly lounging around sunning myself on a palm-edged beach – more’s the pity! But I had an exciting offer from Turin Italy Guide asking if I’d like to write…

A SHEPHERD’S OPEN SANDWICH

I stopped and chatted with a nomadic pastore this morning as he grazed his flock along the river. Well strictly speaking he, being nomadic, stopped to chat to me! We talked sheep and finding the best pastures – one of us quite a lot more knowledgeable than the other! He and his dog are slowly…

FRESH CHERVIL, PEA & ALMOND CREAM SOUP with VIOLETS

It was one of those slightly blah Sundays when even a trip to the Swedish giant IKEA was holding a weird sort of allure. Not that I’m one of those women described by an Italian comedienne as having a frisson of sexual excitement at the thought of a visit. How deeply sad would that be…

FRESH HERB, CHICKPEA & SPRING FLOWER ‘FARINATA’

I can’t believe it’s exactly a year since that grey, misty day on the cliffs near Porto Venere, Cinque Terra when I stood gazing out at the Atlantic ocean, my cold hands clasping a steaming brown-paper package. Inside nestled a large hot slice of fresh-from-the-pan farinata, a sort of flat chickpea (or ceci) pizza. Oh…

ROSE-PETAL GOATS’ CHEESE & DARK BUCKWHEAT CRACKERS

I thought I’d take a different slant on St. Valentine’s Day this year…and focus on Goats! Not in a romantic way I hasten to add..…but because it happens to be Chinese New Year on February 19th and we enter The Year of the Goat – with its potential of bringing us more peace and harmony….