Recipe Book

February 19, 2008 at 9:00 am (food, Italy, life, recipes)

I bought one of those books where you can write in all the recipes that you like and want to remember. Or, you can stick in recipes and bits and bobs that you find and create your own, personalised recipe book. It’s really cute with pictures of ‘castagni’ (chestnuts) on the front and all the sections are labelled in Italian. Now all I need to do is find some time to transfer all the scraps of paper that I’ve been collecting into it. I can’t wait. I’ll never forget how to make custard from scratch again!

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Which fruit?

February 17, 2008 at 4:28 pm (food, Italy, life)

I went to the ‘fruitivendola’ this week to buy all the fruit and veg that we might need. I always check which out of clementines and mandarins have pips because I can never remember and I don’t like the ones with pips. This week however, I was feeling brave, so I filled my bag full of ‘clementini’ and headed to the checkout. Today I ate my first one and there were 31 pips/seeds (whatever you call them)! 31 in one little, tiny clementine!!! I think I got the wrong type. Next time I’ll ask.

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Pancake Day!

February 4, 2008 at 11:57 am (food, Italy, life)

On Shrove Tuesday the tradition in our family is to eat nothing but pancakes for dinner. There are five of us so we used to have two pans going and a huge vat of pancake mix that our Mum had made the night before. I pretty much just stuck to the traditional sugar and lemon and I must say that it is still my favourite topping.

Although I no longer live with my family A has willingly accepted to take on this tradition, so tomorrow night we will be firing up the stove and squeezing the lemons. As we’re in Italy we are going to include chocolate, icecream and alcohol in the proceedings and I can’t wait. Get your frying pans going everyone and let me know how many you ate. (Last year I think I could only manage 5, which was rubbish considering I used to be able to eat 8 when I was a child!)

p.s. I’m blocking out the fact that I’m supposed to give something up for lent when all the pancake fun has ended. I’ll just concentrate on the pancakes for now and let you know what I decide about lent later.

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More Health

January 14, 2008 at 3:56 pm (food, recipes)

This week’s smoothies are:

  1. apple, red berries, yoghurt, milk and honey
  2. pineapple, mango, banana, honey, orange and lemon juices.
  3. pear, kiwi, raspberry and orange juice.

All very yummy but apple does not go as well with red-berries as pear does.

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More Fruit

January 3, 2008 at 5:01 pm (food, Italy, recipes)

Went to the supermarket and they had fresh raspberries! They’d come from Spain, so didn’t think that was too far away, so decided to buy some and try another smoothie. This one is completely my own recipe!


  • 1 small punnet raspberries
  • 5 plums
  • just over 1/2 a pomegranate
  • small wedge of pineapple
  • 6 tbsp milk
  • 2 1/2 tbsp yoghurt
  • 1 tsp honey

Mix with wand blender. Must be strained as there are tons of small pomegranate seeds. Makes 6 small plastic cups.

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Making Smoothies (with surprisingly little mess!)

January 1, 2008 at 4:04 pm (food, Italy, life, recipes)

My sister bought me a book about smoothies and juices for Christmas and I must say I was a bit sceptical at first. I don’t have a juicer or a blender and didn’t know if I’d be able to make them with just a wand. However, yesterday with not much to do, I sat down and made a list of all the ingredients I would need to make the smoothies that I liked the sound of. I basically ended up with a huge list of fruit and after having trundled off to the local supermarket, I returned home with most of the goodies. In the end I made 4 different smoothies, each of which I tweaked and doubled the recipe, then poured the mixtures into little cups, which are now sitting in the freezer; so we can have smoothies every day for breakfast! Can’t wait!

I’m going to put the lists of ingredients below for my reference as much as for anybody else. If you want to make them, you basically peel and chop everything and wack it all in a blender. It’s up to you whether you sieve them or not, I try them first unsieved and if I just can’t bear all the bits, then I strain it. (note, you lose some of the fibre if you sieve it)

1. Brilliant Berries

  • 230g mixed frozen/fresh berries
  • 450ml milk
  • 7 tablespoons natural yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp honey

2. Exotic

  • 2 large wedges pineapple
  • 3/4 ripe mango
  • 1/2 banana
  • juice of 1/4 lemon

3. Strawberry goodness

  • 250g strawberries
  • 450 ml milk
  • 6 tbsp yoghurt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

4. Peculiar Coloured Pear

  • 1 large ripe pear
  • 2 tbsp orange juice
  • 75g frozen mixed berries
  • 1 ripe kiwi

All the above recipes were inspired by recipes given in ‘Juices ad Smoothies’ – Igloo.

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Fish and Chips

December 10, 2007 at 9:23 pm (food, Italy, life)

Since moving out here I’ve been longing for fish and chips. Last time that we popped back to England I made sure that I found time for a quick battered sausage and a portion of England’s finest. However, the chips out here just aren’t the same! Then, as if they knew that I was here, Italy’s version of a fish and chip shop opened 200 metres away from out apartment. It is called ‘Re Calamari’ which means King Calamari and it does deep fried, battered sea food! It’s excellent! I had a portion of king prawns, squid and chips, followed by deep fried pancakes. The chips aren’t up to our high standards yet but the rest of the food was absolutely amazing and I will definitely be going there again.

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Just a Quickie!

September 26, 2007 at 7:59 am (food, Italy, life)

Well, it’s been a while since my last post and the only reason is that I’ve been extremely busy! We’ve had parents and friends visiting and I’ve been on the job hunt. Speaking of which, isn’t it funny how when you’re job hunting nothing comes up for ages and then one day you get two job offers on the same day and you suddenly realise that that makes a total of four jobs and you can’t possibly do them all so you have to start turning people down! I’ve decided to choose the job working in a nice little Italian restaurant, which does the best meringata that I’ve tasted so far! So, I’m busy learning Italian phrases and menus. I’m also teaching a few lessons as well, so I’ve gone fromĀ  3 months of holiday to no days off a week! Ah well, at least I may be able to afford some of the Italian shoes at the end of the month. Well, maybe at the end of 6 months!

Ciao for now.

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Cooking alla Italiana 2

September 7, 2007 at 10:00 am (food, Italy, photos)

Well in a previous post I said that I would give you the recipes for all the bits and bobs that I’ve been cooking. Unfortunately, I’ve forgotten how I made everything because it was quite a while ago. So, I thought I’d just show you the photos instead.

1. Home made basil and red chilli pesto

2.Champagne Chocolate Truffles

I actually got the recipe for these from the programme ‘Cook Yourself Thin‘ and would recommend making them. They’re delicious!

3. Champagne Chocolate Ice-cream

This was made with the first batch of chocolate truffle mixture that went wrong, I put too much alcohol in and it wouldn’t set. So, added a lot of cream and a bit of sugar and ‘ta da’ you have icecream ready for the freezer.

4. Tiramisu

Unfortunately, this one wasn’t very succesful. Heres’s a picture of me eating it!

Bet you’re glad I don’t have the recipe aren’t you!

For the other photos go to my flickr page.

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Cooking alla Italiana

August 23, 2007 at 10:00 am (food, Italy)

I’ve been cooking and concocting like crazy; trying to get into the Italian lifestyle. So far:

  1. Home made basil and red chili pesto
  2. Champagne chocolate truffles
  3. Champagne chocolate ice-cream
  4. Tiramisu with coffee, chocolate and champagne
  5. Slow roasted tomatoes
  6. Roasted pepper and cherry tomato pasta sauce

Recipes to follow

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