Tacchino tonnato. Turkey breast with tuna and mayonnaise sauce

agosto 7, 2014

Tacchino tonnato - Turkey breast with tuna mayonnaise

A friend is someone you share fun, laughter, interests and passions with, someone who naturally pushes you do to better. Emiko is a friend, she has taught me so much. She explained me how to make pretty lanterns with old jars, wire and cheese cloth. She made me discover for the first time the Florence of those who live there, and I grew fond of it, she showed me where to have a dreamy afternoon tea and stay on a budget, she invited me in Cecina for a weekend with our friends, to a molecular aperitif, in San Miniato and Fucecchio for the first time. We’ve been to Venice together.

The pavlova was the first recipe we made together, from there a stream of recipes dots our friendship with tasty memories. She made gracious lemon curd tartlets for my 30th birthday party, sinful fried zucchini flowers stuffed with buffalo ricotta and fig honey when she organized an Apulian lunch, she catered a Japanese home lunch at me and she made with such an incredible skillfulness chirashi sushi and miso eggplants. Even if we three continents and a certain number of Oceans divide us, we managed to bake together an Easter schiacciata and we developed the Italian Table talk project with Valeria and Jasmine.

When she came back to Italy a few months ago, although it was difficult to juggle commitments, deadlines and travels, we were able to carve out some days to spend together in the kitchen, and in one of these, along with Regula, she taught us a new recipe which won a special place in my new book. She made tacchino tonnato, turkey breast with tuna and mayonnaise sauce, and now I’m going to tell you why it is so special.

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Carrot and almond cake. Browsing through sweet memories…

luglio 25, 2014

Carrot and almond cakeThere are three carrot cakes in my memories.

I ordered the first carrot cake with a broken English more than ten years ago. It was Summer 2002, it was my first holiday abroad with friends, a quiet August carved out from my University exams of July and September. We were four adventurers with backpackers and Ireland was our America. We found ourselves in a remote village on the Dingle Peninsula, I can not remember the name but I clearly remember as it was yesterday a downhill road that sloped down towards the sea, with a double row of colorful houses on both sides. Before taking the bus to reach out hostel we sat in a local cafe, with wooden walls painted in white and a second-hand bookshelf in a corner. I ordered a slice of carrot cake, generous and dense, with a thick layer of lemon cheese frosting. Of that cake I can still taste the warmth of spices, so different from the cakes I was used to, comforting and entrancing.

The second cake was one of my creations. Autumn 2003, a few weeks before my graduation. My best friend Laura and I were going to graduate in a few days. We went to Florence to search for a suitable dress for the great occasion, the last thing to do before the big day. In a crowded city bus I took out a plastic tupperware from my bag with a few squares of walnut and carrot cake, which I had prepared the day before. That cake had the taste of  achieved goals and friendship, it was thick and moist, it made me travel through time and space back to put Ireland holiday.

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Why July is my special month and a lemon polenta cake

luglio 11, 2014

Lemon polenta cakeJuly is my special month. It is bursting with sun and good weather, more intense and deeply rooted into summer than June, definitely more care-free than August, because Autumn is yet too far away to smell the musky notes of woods or the stormy winds. You can still plan your summer in July, because the sunny season has just begun, the days are still long and shiny, you can sit on the doorstep in the evening to chat, to enjoy your ice cream and the last moments of light.

I’ve always had a crush on him, July, a charming month with wheat blond hair and eyes as blue as the sky and the deep sea. I would start getting some tan, showing the marks of the tank on my shoulders, to check my progress day after day.

July is my birthday month, just for this reason I love it with a childish love, the most beautiful month of the year because right at the end comes the most exciting day of the year, where I grow, change, and get stronger.

Recently July is also the month of short trips to London, where I can finally breathe the exciting air of the city that fascinates me most. Last year I was there to take part to the Food Blogger Connect, this year I’m going to enjoy a long weekend just like a tourist. Believe me or not, next week I’m going to visit at least a bunch of museums, as – shame on me – whenever faced with the choice between Borrough Market and Tate Modern… well you know which was my choice, don’t you? I love to get lost among the stalls of one of the greatest markets in the world. I won’t go alone. My travel mate and significant other is passionate about museums, I know he will catch me if I will try to ignore the National Gallery in search of a little café where to sit down and pretend to be a Londoner.

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