Buon San Martino

Hobbies, Photography

One of the things that I learned from living in one of the towns here in Italy is that sometimes they prepare a particular cake to celebrate the feast day of the Saint. Today, is the feast day of Saint Martin of Tours and it has been and still is a family tradition to prepare this special sweet. It is called “il Dolce di San Martino”. I use a shortbread “pasta frolla” recipe given to me by an officemate while the decoration of the pastry varies every year. All you need is a good shortbread recipe, dark chocolate for glazing and a handful of “smarties or M&M’s” and candies to decorate the sweet and of course, the special mold “St. Martin of Tours”.

Oh! Saint Martin of Tours is remembered as the Saint who cut his red cloak in two with his sword to give half of it to a beggar clad only in rags in the depth of winter.

And I thought, this is the essence of compassion, generosity, peace and love. An act of kindness, even a smile can do miracles.

Wishing everyone a wonderful Sunday!

Pumpkin cookies

My recipes, Photography

It’s cold, it’s raining and gloomy outside…so I thought that it is the perfect moment to make pumpkin cookies for Halloween. Making an ordinary day worth remembering.

This is the recipe:

PUMPKIN cookies

600 grams All purpose flour

200 grams butter (room temperature)

200 grams powdered sugar

200 grams pumpkin pulp ( steamed)

175 grams almond flour

A pinch of salt

A pinch of cinnamon powder

A pinch of nutmeg powder ( optional)

2 ml vanilla flavoring

2 eggs (100 – 125 grams)

Mix above ingredients together.

If the dough is smooth but sticky, sprinkle/ add more flour. Let the dough rest in the fridge for 30 minutes – 1 hour.

Roll out dough.

Bake at 180° C/ 15 minutes

You can glaze the cookies, decorate it or simply sprinkle it with “zucchero a velo ” (confectionary sugar) before serving.

Wishing everyone a pleasant and fruitful week!

s when

Parco Natura Viva, Bussolengo (VR), Italy

Hopping around..., Photography

A way to learn more about nature…

There is only one description to this place…if you are visiting the province of Verona in Italy, “Parco Natura Viva” in Bussolengo, is surely one of the interesting places to go and visit because aside from the park, it is home for some endangered species.

I think that visiting places and learning something about it is like adding life to each moment of my life. As Abraham Lincoln said “in the end its not about the years in your life that counts but the life in those years”

Life is indeed a very interesting journey…

Flowers…

Photography

Colors…wishing everyone a wonderful week!

Rose “Cocktail” – this climbing classic rose is easy to grow, the color is yellow and red, the red intensifying with age.

Aster – this plant gives a lot of color to my garden during the month of September. In Italy it is also called “settembrini” because the plant blooms in the month of September.

Nasturtium- I attended once a course about comestible flowers and from that time I use the flowers and some young leaves in my vegetable salads. Of course, no one in the family is allergic to it so…for those who want to eat it, better check.

Pansies – in Italy they call it “Viola cornuta”. An easy to grow plant and it gives flowers that blooms from autumn to spring.

Oxalis articulata- ” acetosella articolata”

But what really amazed me today is the sight of a friend’s patio full of walnuts…

Happy Saturday!

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The good thing about having the Four Seasons is…. it brings with it something new and something old.

Winter for me means the sight of Robins (my favorite bird) and Christmas

Spring means awakening . A season of roses and the beginning of the gardening season.

Summer is the sunny part of the year. Outings with family or with friends.

Autumn…together with Spring, is one of my favorite season of the year. Pansies, pumpkins, chestnuts, mushrooms and the sight of gold brown, red and yellow leaves.

Doge’s Palace “Palazzo Ducale”, Venice, Italy

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I have visited a lot of historical buildings in my life but this…is not only historical, it is…at least for me, AMAZING! If you really want to know something about the reason why Venice is a fabulous city, a guided tour about the history of “Palazzo Ducale” and its secret places would be a good place to start.

A view from a gondola of the Doge’s Palace “Palazzo Ducale, Venezia, Italy”

View from one of the rooms of the Armory, Doge’s Palace, Venice, Italy

To the Secret Passages …

View from the Bridge of Sighs “Ponte dei sospiri”, Doge’s Palace, Venice, Italy

There is so much to see and a lot to learn.

Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend.