Monday, 29 March 2010

homemade blackcurrant jellies for Ivy

yesterday we where fullmoon trekking,
the full moon is tomorrow,
but the 4-5days before and also 2-3 after
the moon shines very bright.
it is, of course very important to choose a cloudy free night, 
so you can se the moon and be illuminated by it's shinieness.
you can be surprised how easy it is to see in the "dark", 
with the moon hanging above your head shining like a huge alogene lamp! :))
we used our headlight only in the woods,
where the trees stands thick together.
well, when we got out on the cliff above San Vigilio...
with Garda beneath our feet, we just where stunned.

san vigilio 28 march 2010
here the view of San Vigilio from our place, the day before.

the moon was behind us, 
so no glittery path was seen, 
but anyway the black Gardalake water was moving, 
shimmering in the dark.
all the lake side was illuminated and the lights mirror in the lake.
unfortunately I was without camera and 
simoo had some difficulties to make photos with hers photos can be shown.
it is a pity, beacuse it was all so spectacular!
but we have an appointment in June to go back up there, 
and I will be much more organized!

Until last year the 29th of March was a very sad day for me.
today it is 9 years since my friend Silvia left us. there is a song that reminds me of her,
it is "don't explain" - Nina Simone singing.

it is diffcult to explain why that song, perhaps the words, the music or Nina's voice.
I don't know but I do love that song.

since last year, 
since I know Ivy, 
the 29th of March have a nicer, much nicer meaning for me. 
Today it is her birthday!
soo, happy birthday dear Ivy! 
these jellies are for you.

home made blackcurrant jellies for Ivy!

home made jellies

you need:
300ml of black currant syrup 
200ml of water
10gr of agar agar

put syrup and water in a small pot, heat up.
when it is boiling add the agar agar and mix well.
let cook for 5-7min and then pour in a alluminium mould
(or in small individual moulds).
let cool over the night.
the next day, 
toss out the jelly from the mould and cut in small squares or 
use a biscuit cutter to make different shapes.
roll in sugar before serving.
conserve in a cool place 
(put in a box i with a piece of baking papaer between every layer)
not in the fridge.
they are delicious :))

this is the sky this evening.
deep blue for you Ivy!

monday evening - happy birthday Ivy! 29 march 2010

Sunday, 28 March 2010

WHB #226 - Pineapple, grapefruit and lime marmalade

weekend herbal blogging #226
more information about the WHB here:
Kalyn created this great event and
Haalo is now helping her keeping it together :)
this week's host is 
Graziana from Erbe in Cucina (Cooking with herbs)
Thank's Graziana for hosting!

this last days has been so warm and cosy.
Spring makes my happy, probably because I'm an Aries
makes me jumping and laughing
makes me running and gardening
makes me hoping and whising
I love spring!

today,  we had breakfast on the terrace.
it is some days we have lunch out there, but today with the clock
moved forward breakafast was late
it was beautiful, warm and sunny.
this marmalade made it's nice figure on the table :)

 pineapple, grapefruit and lime marmalade

you need:
1 pineapple
5  grapefruits (ca 1kg)
500gr of limes
1l of water
1kg of sugar

peel the pineapple and cut in pieces.
brush the grapefruits, and the limes
cut away their beginning and their endsù
and cut in very tiny slices.
put the citrues in a large pan and cover with the water.
cook for an hour or so, until the peel is almost soft then add the
pineapple pieces and cook for another 30min.
always on low heat.
add the sugar, mix well.
 higher the heat and when it boils, let cook for 10min
turn of the heat, cover the pan and let rest in a cool place
until the next day.
the next day heat up, when it boils then lower the heat
and let cook until it gets the right consistence.
it will take about 20-25min ca.
pour in clean jars, close lid well and let cool
completaly upside down.
store in a cool,  dark and dry place.
will conserve for at least two years.

I allways cook marmalades very slowly
then they don't do any foam you have to take away 
before pouring in jars.
letting the maramalde rest for one night helps
the sugar condence quicker.
and it gets more tasty.
if you are in a hurry you can finish cooking the same day,
but it will have to cook longer, and sometimes the 
longer cooking time makes marmalades and jams less
brilliant in colour. 
this was are breakfast table this morning



and this was how wonderful the sky was this evening.
have a nice week,.
auguri albiii 28 march 2010

Sunday, 14 March 2010

WHB #224 - Dukkha

this week we are hosted by Huan from Eat.Read.Live
Thank's Huan for hosting!

more information about the WHB here:
Kalyn created this great event and
Haalo is now helping her keeping it together :)

this is Torri Del Benaco. A small village almost forgotten..
so squeezed between the more popular Garda
and the bigger more fashionable Malcesine.
torri b&W da loc. fornare
it is some time I spend in it's surroundings and I must say, 
Torri is really really charming!!
today it was special, 
the whole village was spread between it's small harbor and,
the old mediaval castle.
the entry of the museum in the castle was free
and a lot of people took advantage of that
(me and my husband too :))
in the small harbor where 4gazebos put together 
and inside Isidoro from Caval (very famous resturant here in Torri) 
was cooking a special dish called "Carbonèra"...
polenta with extravergine olive oil (from Brenzone) and Monte Baldo cheese
(al mixed together..fantastico!!!)

and this bench is in a marvellous position, 
it is on the way coming from Torri going to Crero-Pai, or to Albisano,
or going to Loncrino...
well, any excuse is good to pass by,
and sit down looking at the Garda Lake under you feet :))
(Torri on you left)

panchina Loc. Fornare

this of course has nothing to do with the recipe...
but as I'm very happy today because I 've met a lot of interesting people,
eat good and drank even better, 
did a nice walk with my husband 
(just one-way..going back on foot was out of the question, he was tired!! )
...and this is the beautiful sunset this evening.
I'm so happy livinig in this charming angle of the world :)
sunset e pioppi 13 march 2010


dukha 2

you need:

  • 1/ 2 cup sesame seed
  • 1/4 cup  whole coriander seed
  • 1/8 cup hazelnuts*
  • 1/16 cup cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper grains

toast all ingredients ina hot frying pan (don'r put any grease)
then when coolen, crush roughly.
conserve in a glass jar, in a cool, dry and dark place.
I actuallu don't know the consreving time, but I presume that this is best when fresh.
use everywhere!!

* I was without hazelnuts, so I used pistacchi.
this mix of spices does give extra taste, and flair in a very traditional dish
 perhaps you all know dukkha,
but for my this is new and sooo tastful! :) 
found on
Dukkah is an Egyptian spice mixture. 
It is often served with pita breadthat has been basted with olive oil. 
The bread is then dipped in the mixture. It has a variety of uses. 
You can use it on meats, rice, veggies - the possibilities are endless with dukkah!
verza e luganega (con duhkha)

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Biscotti Regina vegan - Regina Cookies (vegan) - 81th Tablescape Thursday

tè in terrazza2
I was sitting on our terrace drinking tea, looking at the beautiful sunset this charming place
 the Garda Lake offers us almost every day.

I'm so greatful living here!! :)

tè in terrazza

It is close to Easter and Ester decorations is to be done...
why not start with the fireplace.

 I have used English Ivy (Hedera Helix Variegata)
as base and added home made polystyrene eggs made with Decoupage technique, 
and others are covered with coloured rice paper (very quick method)

uova piccole
uovo grande

Other eggs are in plastic and bought.

in the ceiling I hang one big egg made in
(sculpture material: soaked paper strips)
gift from my Mother-in Law, Iris.

What I was eating together with the tea?
well, Alice's Regina Cookies, vegan of course :)

Regina Cookies (vegan)

biscotti regina

you need:
250gr of flour
75gr of sugar
100ml of milk (soy)
30gr of maize or rice oil
1 pinch of salt
80gr of sesame seed

mix the flour with the baker's ammonia.
then add the sugar and the salt. mix well, and add the liquid.
it should come out rather sticky, but that is right.
make small sausages out of the dough and roll in the sesame seeds.
put on a baking tray covered with baking paper.
bake in a hot oven: 200°C for 25min

the ammonia will stink terrible while baking, but don't worry that's normal.
whrn the cookies are completaley cooled no smell or taste will remain.

remember to stop by at
Susan's blog Between Naps on the Porch to see all other tablescapers :)

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Orange and Pumpkin Marmalade

aaaah, finally some sun!! the last days where cold and humid!
and then two days ago it started snowing, and as we are absolutaly NOT used to it..
everybody panicked!! everthing stopped!!
yesterday the world around us where all white...incredible!

verso il lago

I went trekking and made some photos.

gruppoval dei molini

But, it is fun when it is not lasting to long:))

in we live on this charming place the Garda Lake
the sun came out..and it is doing it's best melting everything.

the sun is back! 11 march 2010

well, while waiting for all flowers to bloom, 
the leaves to turn green again..
let's cheer up with a "golden" marmalade..full of light, and happiness.
eating it makes you feel good! :)

Orange and Pumpkin Marmalade

Marmellata di zucca e arancia1

you need:

500gr of pumpkin (peeled)
500gr of oranges (peeled)
peel of 2 oranges
juice of 1 lemon
1kg of sugar*

put pieces of pumpkin and the peeld oranges in a blender.
blend roughly.

put in a pot together with the sugare and the lemon juice.
cook gently for 50-60 min mixing now and then.
in the mean while cut the orange peel in small slices. 
put in a small pot and cover with water.
cook for 10min and the filter. do this for 3 times, 
this makes the peel soft and remove the bitterness.
add the peels in the last 20min of the marmalade cooking.
pour in dry, clean glasses and close lid. 
turn up-side-down and let cool completaley.
conserve in a dry, cool and dark place.
conserving time: at least 3 years (if it will get as long :)

Marmellata di zucca e arancia2


* of course you can use less sugar, 
the marmalde will last as long but will be softer in it's consistence.
you can also use Jam sugar or Jelling sugar
please, follow the indications on the package

this is Giulia, enjoying the sun :)


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