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tuscany

Garibaldi Innamorato’s Zuppa Corsa, a fish soup from the Tuscan coast

The supermarket was offering the prettiest fish plucked out if the waters of the Tuscan arcipelago last night — so fresh they smell of the sea and are still in rigor mortis — for a steal, 6 euro a kilo. Look at how bright eyed and beautiful they are! These small fish — a mixture of different types of sea bream known as fragolino (the pink one, known as pandora in English) and mormora (striped sea bass, with the yellow stripe on... Read More

Tuscan spice pumpkin bread, a tale of forgotten drugs

I am quite aware that this title sounds a bit ridiculous — because there is no such thing as Tuscan spice pumpkin bread and it sounds like one of those recipes that I see online and abhor, that has nothing at all to do with Tuscany, like “Tuscan salad dressing” (no such thing exists in Tuscany, we just use olive oil and a wine vinegar of choice). But this time Tuscan spice really is a thing and it’s a fascinating thing too,... Read More

Pici all’aglione, Tuscany’s rustic pasta al pomodoro

Cooking post-lockdown is still keeping us grounded, but also relaxed and even entertained. I have been turning more than ever to Tuscany’s comforting, frugal cuisine for inspiration – it just feels right. Not because we can’t get ingredients or are rationing but just using what we have on hand or what is abundant (hello tomatoes) at the little bottega in the piazza, skipping that trip to the supermarket in favour of staying home or close... Read More

Pan roasted sausages with grapes for Artusi’s 200th birthday

I would go as far as to say that Pellegrino Artusi helped me start this blog almost a decade ago. And write my first cookbook, Florentine. He would be turning 200 today, so I felt it apt to cook him dinner for his birthday. I didn’t choose anything fancy because to be honest, the recipes in his 790 page cookbook are anything but fancy. They’re regular recipes of the best kind — home cooking. So I chose something satisfying, homely,... Read More

Stale bread for cinnamon fritters and tortine di mozzarella

Cooking as a family has been keeping us grounded and inspired lately. We have been baking a lot, Marco has started a new sourdough project, while Mariu, our 7 year old, and I have been making some recipe videos. These are two really easy recipes that you can make with stale bread — and I mean you can use completely rock hard bread. Tuscans never, ever throw out bread. It is revived and made into salads like panzanella, soups like pappa al... Read More

Lockdown in Florence: Comforting chicken and farro soup & home deliveries

These are strange and surreal times and unless you’ve been hiding under a rock (not such a bad idea) you probably already know that the entire nation of Italy is under lockdown in an attempt to contain the coronavirus, Covid-19. Things change every day, with new regulations, new realities, new travel bans, new closures, every single day. The current situation on the 13th of March is this: Florence is deserted as citizens are encouraged to stay... Read More

Photo essay: Chestnut polenta in the Tuscan mountains

One late October, my friend Simona, who runs a beautiful B&B called Canto del Maggio, brought us to her special place, a little wooden ‘rifugio‘, as they’re known in Italian, a mountain cabin offering a place of rest and nourishment for hikers. This particular rifugio, called Osteria la Rocca, clings to the tiny stone hamlet of Rocca Ricciarda, high up in the chestnut woods of Pratomagno, between Florence and Arezzo. The cosy,... Read More

Finally, one meal we can enjoy as a family – Tuscan spiedini di carne.

I have a picky eater. For any fellow distressed parents of picky eaters (in particular parents who care about and love food, whose lives even revolve around food) out there, I’m here to say it’s all going to turn out fine. My daughter Mariu was always particular with food. She refused to eat baby mush. Or be spoon-fed. No purees, her tightly sealed lips made sure they never reached her tongue. We did baby led weaning without even realising... Read More

Foraging, handmade ink and dye workshop + a recipe for dyeing with turmeric

I have always loved wandering the Tuscan countryside (or Melbourne city!), picking plants and flowers to inspire a meal. And ever since learning how to dye fabric with foraged plants (see below for a ‘recipe’), I’ve fallen in love with the idea of sharing this beautiful, sustainable process, along with making handmade natural inks over a truly creative, inspiring few days. So I’m very pleased to announce a new and unique workshop... Read More

Egg yolk ravioli (and a white truffle experience)

One of the highlights of 2019 was hosting the White Truffle and Wine Culinary Retreat here in Tuscany with my husband Marco Lami. We had 13 international guests (from as far as Argentina and Canada and as close as Abruzzo!) together in a big, traditional Tuscan farmhouse, surrounded by woods. It may have rained quite intensely (it was November after all), but we donned rain boots to visit the olive groves and go truffle hunting and during downtime... Read More