My 10 favorite patisseries in Milan

Patisserie is something really serious: scientific dosages, endless experiments, secret recipes, all of that to create something able to transform even the worst day into something acceptable. I am a great lover of good patisserie and I’m always looking for the perfect croissant, the cake that makes everyone happy at a dinner with friends and beautiful pastries to take to mom on Sundays. After years of search and tastings, I think I’m ready to make the list of my 10 favorite patisseries in Milan!

1) Best patisseries in milan – SISSI

If you want to have the best croissant in Milan, you’ll find it in this fantastic patisserie run by an Italian-Senegalese family. The venue is very small and crowded during the weekend, but the custard and the chocolate cream are really worth it. Not to be missed the savory croissants filled with ham.
ADDRESS: piazza Risorgimento 6, Milan

Sissi - one of my favorite patisseries in Milan

Sissi – one of my favorite patisseries in Milan @ Nuok

Continue reading

Costa Smeralda: my holiday in Sardinia

A few weeks ago I went to Sardinia for the first time in my life. You know what they say: you travel around the world but you don’t know the wonderful places of your own country. Well, there you go.  I decided to start from the area I’ve always heard marvelous things: Costa Smeralda in Northern Sardinia. And as expected, I fell in love. Not only for the crystal sea, the enchanting Mediterranean nature and the amazing traditional cuisine, but also because – since I was there in June during the low season – I’ve met just a few tourists and I had the opportunity to enjoy the  peace of that wonderful place.

Capriccioli beach in Costa Smeralda

Capriccioli beach in Costa Smeralda © Sg

Sunset in Baja Sardinia

Sunset in Baja Sardinia© Sg

Continue reading

Trenette with homemade pesto, potatoes and green beans

Pesto comes originally from Liguria, a coastal region in the North of Italy. I don’t come from that region so in theory I wouldn’t be entitled to teach anything about pesto, a great product known and loved by everyone. And at the same time I shouldn’t be talking about trenette, which is an amazing type of narrow and flat pasta coming from the same region. However I have a very close friend of mine who comes from a town called Alassio in Liguria; she gave me her personal recipe of trenette with homemade pesto. This dish is a variation of the classic pesto and I want to share it with you because I think it’s great!

Trenette with pesto

Trenette with pesto © Le ricette di Lara

Continue reading

Bean soup: the recipe to warm the heart

Amsterdam is a wonderful and international city, full of opportunities and dreams but certainly, the weather is not at its best. Autumn begins very early: while Italians are still going to the beach and my friends start complain because they have to put a blanket on their bed, I’ve already been wearing scarves and sweaters for weeks. The end of last summer (weather wise) was terrible and the rain and the wind were incessant: August was a preview of what we had to expect in the months to come.

So what can I do when I arrive at home completely soaked after a long working day? My personal remedy is cooking a bean soup that warms the heart and reminds me that Autumn and the cold can be nice. The smell of the bean soup in the kitchen makes me thinking of the evenings spent in the mountains when I was a kid, the lazy lunch on Sundays, the winter trips to Tuscany, the beauty and the ease of slow cooked food.

Vegetable bean soup with borlotti beans, lentils, barley and chickpeas

Vegetable bean soup with borlotti beans, lentils, barley and chickpeas © Sg

I am a great lover of beans: simple but complex ingredients, genuine but versatile and they are a core element of great dishes belonging to more than one Italian regional cousine. I love looking for several beans types at the market  or at the organic food stores and then combine them in different ways.

Over the years I have tried a lot of bean soup recipes, but the more I experiment the more I believe my favorite one is the one from the first cookbook I ever bought (a REAL book made of paper!): “Il Cucchiaio d’argento”. Here is my favorite bean soup recipe!

Continue reading

White truffle – a tasty experience in Italy

Once a year in Autumn I give myself the luxury to go to Italy in Piedmont to eat white truffle. I usually go for lunch to my favorite restaurant in the countryside (I’ve had already talked about it here) so after that I still have the whole afternoon to go for a walk in Alba or to enjoy a drive in the vineyards in the Langhe region. The sublime flavor combined with a day trip in the misty and enchanted countryside is my idea of heaven.

HOW, WHEN AND WHERE THE WHITE TRUFFLE GROWS

The truffle is a mushroom that grows underground in a spontaneous way next to the roots of some trees and depending on the type of tree, the truffle will have a particular smell and color. A truffle grown close to an oak, for example, has a more intense smell, while a truffle grown close to a linden is more clear and aromatic. The rain, the earth and the wood scent create a unique flavor, that will please the palate with its powerful and incomparable taste. Unfortunately, the white truffle is a very rare product, not only because it grows almost exclusively in the area surrounding Alba between September and December, but also because it depends on seasonal factors that can influence the way it grows and therefore the quantity .

Fresh white truffles

Fresh white truffles © Sg

Continue reading