On both our trips to Sicily in the Spring and Sicily and the Aeolian Islands in the Fall, we have the opportunity to prepare dishes using traditional Sicilian ingredients, including an expectedly delicious twist on ice cream – with salty, pungent capers.
Capers are one of Sicily’s main crops, and are meticulously picked by hand and then either pickled or salted to preserve them and give them their distinctive taste. Traditionally served in savory dishes, our capers ventured their way into some ice cream!
The ice cream was served in a “roof tile” made out of Sicilian chocolate. This chocolate is equally as special because the sugar is added into the chocolate after it has cooled, so it does not melt, giving the chocolate a grainy – and delightful – texture. More info can be found HERE on one of the oldest chocolate factories in Sicily.
Here is the recipe for a delicious Orange Marmalade courtesy of Fabrizia Lanza, owner of Anna Tasca Lanza Cooking School in Sicily.
Makes about 7 half pint jars
Ingredients:3 pounds oranges, preferably organic
4 1/2 cups sugar, divided in two
Repost from Anna Tasca Lanza Cooking School, August 3, 2016
“Visiting Case Vecchie for the first time in 1998 was like coming home. The approach through the green rolling countryside left a deep impression, as some places in the world will do. Rural beauty softens the heart. There was a noticeable feeling of falling into a familiar place, yet knowingly seeing it for the first time.” — Peggy Markel of Peggy Markel’s Culinary Adventures [Read more…]
L’abc 2013. 100% Sangiovese made by wine lovers Adriano Zago, Bernardo Conticelli and Ciro Beligni from vines grown 600 meters high in Lamole, in Chianti Classico. Vinified first in stainless steel, then terracotta amphora, then wood. It’s a very pretty wine with high cherry notes which were gorgeous on the palate with some organic, free-range Iberico ham from Finca Montefrio that I brought back from Seville and a savory pate that I made with capers and dried pachino cherry tomatoes from my recent trip to Sicily. It was fun to share with Bernardo who was sweet to bring me his wine to taste.
From Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/BGXE0cZn_x9/
This is just one of the things that I love about Sicily. You drive down a rural road and your heart stops. It’s not only that traditions are carrying on with the young, and you can have a conversation, it’s that the sound of the bells is symphonic and the whole scene is bucolic and relaxing.
We had just been to Filipo’s farm with @fabrizialanza to witness the making of pecorino from start to finish and taste super soft creamy ricotta, still warm. The fields are full of wild flowers, the air is still cool and the sky blue. What more? #swoon @gowithpeggy #sicily #freshricotta #rurallife #pecorino
From Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/BFszJpin_8I/
This is an empty bench where Franco Ruta used to sit outside of Antica Dolceria Bonajuto with his stubby Toscano. His presence is sorely missing in Modica.
@bonajuto is the oldest Dolceria in Sicily, famous for its delectable chocolate since 1880. Franco brought the attention to this small Baroque town in southern Sicily and put it on the world’s foodie map in the most clever way.
“Niente e Nuovo”. His dry sense of humor, wry smile and good heart was as toothsome as his chocolate.
Online orders can be made here: http://www.bonajuto.it/en/ or join us in Sicily to experience the chocolaty goodness in person!
See original post on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/BFhm2wlH__g/
Modern nomads want connection and authentic experiences…
.. and we are willing to go to the ends of the earth to find them. It’s a need, like water or food. I once traveled to the isle of Erraid off the coast of Scotland and fell to my knees on the far distant shore and wept. It felt so good. I picked myself up, brushed myself off and headed home, refreshed.
Italy, in many ways, has taught me to love. In Tuscany, I think of chefs like Fabio Picchi, who radiates an eccentricity and passion for everything he touches. Or Giorgio, my favorite farmer at the Sant’Ambrogio Market, cupping a fresh artichoke in his dirt-covered hands, bundling up a bouquet of fresh herbs for me to take home along with my vegetables. I think of laundry strung above the alleyways and the texture of old stone and crumbling plaster as I walk through the narrow streets of Florence, which open up to wide piazzas filled with swooping swallows.
We all have places like this, and discover new ones each time we travel. Places that remind us to fall in love with our own lives.
What brings you alive?
What brings me alive is the active participation of being
in a culture different from my own,
relating with a heightened sense of awareness and an open heart looking for a way in.
I feel we have found a way through food to build a bridge for meaningful conversation. In doing so, we are creating a more peaceful world. After 24 years, I have gained significant confidence and trust to move between cultures. We need an antidote to this somewhat crazy world and what better way than making and breaking bread with the light of our own smiles?
The soil has been turned over and our seedlings of Culinary Adventures have been planted with you in mind. May the sun’s light bring fruition when the time is right for you to join us on one of these significant journeys. [Read more…]