The places I called home: Pisa

Aged about 10 I visited Pisa with my parents, a quick stopover during my one and only great big trip to Southern Italy. Piazza dei Miracoli – the only thing we stopped to see – got me awestruck. I can still remember the white marble of the buildings, the green of the grass and the blue of the sky. In my child eyes the Leaning Tower looked just about right with its quirky physics. What I didn’t know back then was that in 15 years I would have been back. As a resident.
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Penne al salmone e vodka

On the occasion of my mom’s birthday I am posting a recipe that I have learned from her, and since she taught me to cook in Italian I will keep its original title: penne al salmone e vodka. The truth is, pasta comes in many shapes, but for salmon sauce you want to go with penne. That’s a match made in heaven. So think of pasta, perfectly al dente of course, swimming in a creamy sauce with salmon flakes and fried zucchini. Beautiful. Continue reading

Brown sugar panna cotta

cane sugar panna cotta

It may seem like I have a slight obsession with brown sugar lately, especially after I made brown lemonade – the last time I made panna cotta I decided to sub white sugar with its brown alternative. Apart from giving the end product a different aftertaste, the use of brown sugar gave my panna cotta also a nice light brown colour. Panna cotta is a cream-based dessert that originates from the Italian region of Piemonte, my home region. It is probably my favourite dessert if I were to pick one from the culinary tradition of the part of Italy I grew up in. Continue reading

Farro salad with baked cod, peas and feta

Summer is finally here, this time it’s for real and that calls for one thing: salads! No, I’m kidding, summer in Sweden equals barbeque. Only when it’s sunny and warm, though. Salads are the alternative for those days when you’d rather eat in. Or, a nice side dish to your hot dog when you’re still in the mood for salad on those nice summer evenings. A nicely balanced salad that alone can work as a proper meal is one that features some nice grains as well as some protein to go with the veggies.  Continue reading

Creamy pasta with roasted cherry tomatoes

creamy pasta with cherry tomatoes

We Italians can be awfully picky eaters. We pride ourselves for coming from one of the places in the world with the best food, and then tend to forget that there’s a whole world out there that is not doing that bad when it comes to preparing food, after all. Sure, Italian food will forever be my favourite, but I think that keeping an open mind is something a few more Italians should consider doing.

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Of rotten sharks and supermarket food: eating in Iceland

During our road trip through southern and western Iceland, endless possibilities to sample unusual foods like local fish and puffin meat crossed our path, but oftentimes we had to discreetly back off as the sad truth is only one: eating in Iceland is horribly expensive. I know that that is part of the tourism system and I, as a visitor, should try to help the local economy as much as I can, but food – especially in restaurants – proved just so incredibly overpriced that I just couldn’t. Continue reading

My Iceland road trip – Snæfellsnes peninsula

Snæfellsnes peninsula and national park

After spending two nights in Reykjavík (and not taking advantage of its famous nightlife), we set off on the second portion of our road trip, this time driving up the West coast to the Snæfellsnes peninsula. Although this can be done as a daytrip from the capital, we decided to allow ourselves more time and spend one night in the area. We were prepared for bad weather, so two days seemed like a better option in case it became too bad to stay out with the camera. We did indeed experience all kinds of weather there: sun, snow, hailstorm, extreme wind. What we didn’t know (and we later learned) was that on that very night Iceland was transitioning from winter to summer. Continue reading

My Iceland road trip – Reykjavík and the Golden Circle

iceland golden circle

In the middle of our road trip through Iceland we planned a two-night stop in Reykjavík with a day trip along the Golden Circle tourist route. This would allow to have the same accommodation over two nights – sparing ourselves the hassle of packing-unpacking every single day – as well as pick the best day, weather-wise, for the Golden Circle tour. In the end the weather in the Golden Circle area proved to be quite horrendous on both days, and in Reykjavík it was supposed to be bad on one day and okay on the other, so we just decided to make the most of the city on the okay day and take whatever came for the trip on the other. Continue reading

My Iceland road trip – the South coast

Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon

The southern coast of Iceland is where most of the island’s notable landmarks are located. There is no better way to explore Iceland than by car, so over the week-long Easter break we set off on a road trip through the land of fire and ice. One week is not enough to explore the whole country, so I had to make a selection of what I wanted to see in the limited time that we had, and having a car definitely helped to make the most of our time and cover decent distances in a bunch of days. I should begin by saying that most of the education I got about the beauties of Iceland came from two music videos, both set in the South of the country. Continue reading

Brown lemonade

brown sugar lemonade

“Lemonade can’t be brown!” was the comment I got when I lay on the table a jug full of my newest lemonade. That, and a puzzled look on the face. “But it features muscovado sugar…”, was my reply. Indeed, the beverage looked more like a fancy attempt to revive old coca cola gone flat, rather than a regular lemonade. But why does lemonade have to be yellow? I mean, it can be pink, too, right? So why not brown? Again, it has awesome brown sugar in it! Continue reading