All about the oil…


We recently held an evening at Caldesi in Campagna to celebrate the new season’s Italian olive oil. Along with some samples from Filippo Berio and the knowledge of our cookery school’s expert Stefano we’d arranged a tutored tasting followed by a feast cooked by Giancarlo and Head Chef Gregorio.
I’d arranged the restaurant to look like a traditional taverna and …

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A Perfect Winter Salad..

endive salad 2

Insalata di indivia con miele, pinoli e gorgonzola 
Endive salad with gorgonzola, pine nuts and honey
Serves 4
Endives are part of the chicory family and have a gentle bitterness to them which, in this recipe, is balanced by the honey. Endive leaves are the perfect shape to carry salads and we often eat this salad with our fingers …

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A Cranberry Classic


This is my last blog before Christmas so I would thought I’d share a family recipe for cranberry sauce which is an essential part of a poultry centred Christmas luncheon and also goes so well with the Boxing Day cold cuts.
My Mum always made her cranberry sauce with port and orange. It was rich, sticky and looked just like …

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Party Nibbles Turin Style…

Breadsticks small copy

This is a recipe from my book ‘The Italian Cookery Course’ which I use time and time again. With the Christmas drinks party season about to fall upon us these are really easy to make and make a great pre-dinner nibble with a Christmas cocktail or two.
Torinese Breadsticks
Grissini Torinesi
These long thin breadsticks, known as grissini torinesi, hail …

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A slow cooked sensation from our latest book…

Oxtail web version

Photo by Helen Cathcart
Our recently published book ‘Rome – Centuries in an Italian Kitchen‘ has been flying off the shelves and this is one of my favourite winter recipes from the book. We forget sometimes that the Roman empire extended far into Northern Europe, right up to North Northumberland in Britain’s case, so many of their dishes have …

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A Feast Fit for a Caesar…


We’ve been holding some very special Roman themed dinners at Caldesi in Campagna and Caffe Caldesi to coincide with the launch of our latest book ‘Rome – Centuries in an Italian Kitchen’. Our menu for the evenings was designed to showcase some of the dishes that we discovered in our many months of research and to take our guests on …

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Venice – Off the beaten canal

Gondelers copy

Photo by Helen Cathcart
Giancarlo and I spent a lot of time enjoying the bars, restaurants and foodie hang-outs of Venice while researching our book ‘Venice – Recipes Lost and Found’ and I thought it would be nice to share some of our favourite places with you. This list is in no particular order but I have separated by …

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Not just for Halloween..

Prepping soup

Pumpkins are in season, so in the spirit of making hay while the sun shines… or is that making soup while the fog surrounds? Here’s our family favourite recipe for warming pumpkin soup that features in our book ‘Venice – Recipes Lost and Found‘ :-

Zuppa di Zucca
Pumpkin Soup
This soup was served to us at the restaurant …

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A Cold Beer & Stunning Suppli.. The ultimate sporting snack!

Supplizio, Rome

Whether you’re watching the Rugby World Cup or the last races of the F1 season, the first day of the jump season or the race for the Premiership title, Suppli are the ultimate sporting snack as they’re very easy to eat, extremely moorish and go really well with a cold Italian beer. Here’s our friend’s recipe for these mouthfuls of …

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A simply sublime dessert…

WhippedRicotta web version

Whipped Ricotta with Rum and Fresh Berry Compote
Ricotta Montata con Rum e Composta di Bacche
 This glorious marriage of flavours has been around for centuries in Italy. It soothes with its cuddle of creamy sweetened ricotta. Add crushed Amaretti and preserved cherries; our favourite are the amarena cherries made by Fabbri and sold in pretty blue and white patterned …

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