Venetian Cicchetti – the Cookbook

The first thing I do when I arrive in Venice? I head out for a glass of wine and a plate of sarde in saor. The sweet and sour preparation of sardines – often served on a slice of bread as a cicchetto – makes for a perfect introduction to the unique flavors of Venetian cooking.

Considering my love for bàcari, the backstreet bars where Venetians stop for ombre and cicchetti, I was overjoyed when Emiko Davies stayed at Palazzo Ca’nova while researching her latest cookbook.

Cinnamon and Salt: Cicchetti in Venice (Hardie Grant Books) is Emiko’s fifth Italian cookbook and her first about Venice. It is a great pleasure that some of the recipes in the book have been tested and photographed at the Lipparini apartment of Palazzo Ca’nova.

 

Katharina's Italy

A VENETIAN RESTAURANT WITH VEGETARIAN TREATS

Are you a pescatarian? Or do you travel with friends who are vegetarians but you’d still like to try the famous fegato alla Veneziana (calf’s liver Venetian style)?

Osteria La Zucca in Venice has a varied and excellent menu that will make everybody happy.

Located in the Santa Croce neighborhood, the restaurant has a porta d’acqua, an entrance door right onto a canal. Hence it is easy to arrive by water taxi or gondola. And La Zucca’s elegant interiors are reminiscent of the precious woodwork on sailboats.

WHERE: Osteria la Zucca, 1762 Santa Croce, Venezia.

WHEN: We recommend La Zucca in summer and in winter. It is open for lunch and dinner. Closed on Sundays.  Make sure to check the current opening times and book several days ahead.

Phone +39 041 52 41 570 – www.lazucca.it

 

Katharina's Italy

YUMMY HUMMUS IN THE MAREMMA

What do Syria and Tuscany have in common? Well, probably several things, but for sure a passion for great food! A few weeks ago, I partook in a Tuscan-Syrian lunch at the Chimera d’Albegna, a small winery founded by a Florentine family and located a few cables’ length away from the Marsiliana estate, one of our long-established holiday rentals in the Maremma.

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THE CREAM OF ITALIAN FOOD BLOGGING

Take my word for it: most Italian food lovers own dozens of cookbooks, restaurant guides, treatises on the history of Italian cuisine, and what have you. And I’m no exception to the rule.

The problem with books, though – well, at least in my case – is that when I have the leisure and peace of mind to try out a new recipe, nine times out of ten I’m away from home and from my treasured “library”.

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THE BIG AOSTA SURPRISE

 

On our way back to Paris from Italy, in August, we decided to pull off the highway in Aosta, the capital city of the bel paese’s smallest and least populated region. The plan was to stretch our legs and have a quick snack before tackling the 11 km long Mont Blanc tunnel. But contrary to all expectations, we stumbled upon striking Roman ruins – city walls, bridges, aqueducts, old crypts, even the relics of a theatre! We were so impressed that instead of leaving Aosta, we got tickets and went on a tour of the main archaeological sites.

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Madonna della Salute Feast in Venice

People have often asked me: “What is the best time of year to visit Venice, Katharina?” And invariably my answer has been: “Off season, especially in wintertime. And if you want to see the Serenissima in its most vibrant and transcendent mode, you should set your heart on November 21st.”

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TO BE SAVOURED WITHOUT MODERATION

If I say point-blank “Italian street food”, you’ll probably reply “pizza”, won’t you? Or, if you’re very Italian street smart, you might retaliate with “focaccia”, “piadina”, “tramezzino”… Good.

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KENYA’S SOUL IN THE HEART OF TUSCANY

Even though my work is firmly rooted in the bel paese, it never ceases to offer me opportunities to meet new people from every corner of the world and learn about their customs and life experiences. Continue Reading →

TENUTA LA FRATTA

At the junction of Umbria and Tuscany lies the Val di Chiana, a wide fertile valley boasting lovely medieval villages, beautiful rural landscapes and the eponymous Chianina cattle breed, from which the best bistecca Fiorentina is prepared.

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A GREAT TRATTORIA TREAT

Why on earth did I think that Italy no longer held any secrets for me?… I came down with a bump when my beloved sister Victoria Trauttmansdorff made me discover a gem of a little Florentine restaurant situated within the lively Sant’Ambrogio market.

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