June, 2016

May, 2016

April, 2016

  • The six rules of barbecuing

    28 April, 2016 The six rules of barbecuing

    Even the best cooks can be stumped when it comes to cooking to perfection over coals. We ask Ben Tish to tell us the six most important rules of barbecuing so we can grill with confidence over the long weekend.
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November, 2015

October, 2015

September, 2015

August, 2015

July, 2015

  • Eat like an Italian

    20 July, 2015 Eat like an Italian

    If you’ve ever been on holiday to Italy, like us, you’ve probably eaten classic pizzas, pastas and risottos until you’re fit to burst. While sticking with what you know isn’t always a bad thing, delve a little deeper and you’ll find the true heart of the region; eating cotoletta in Milan, beans in Florence and artichokes in Campania will open up a whole new world of Italian cooking. We spoke to three Air B’n’B hosts about the food of their region, must-eats while you’re there, and asked about the best-kept secrets when it comes to eating out.
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  • Michelin Stars in Your Eyes

    06 July, 2015 Michelin Stars in Your Eyes

    With so many Michelin-starred chefs on the site, we challenged Cooked writer Imogen Corke to test her mettle on some of the trickier recipes. This week, she cooks Atul Kochhar’s cod in nilgiri korma gravy from his latest cookbook, Benares.
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May, 2015

  • Q&A with Rosie Birkett

    22 May, 2015 Q&A with Rosie Birkett

    We ask our authors ten questions about their life long love of food. This week, we speak to Rosie Birkett, author of A Lot on her Plate, about roast dinners, tuna tacos, and why you should never run your finger through hot caramel.
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  • The Lunchbox Edit: Spring Greens

    01 May, 2015 The Lunchbox Edit: Spring Greens

    Each week, we take some of our favourite recipes and give them a little tweak to make perfect packed lunches.
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Our Cooked authors' tour of Italy

By
Eve O'Sullivan
Added
25 July, 2016

With so many beautiful Italian cookbooks in our library, we asked our authors to give us a guided food tour of the country they love. From gnudi in Florence with Emiko Davies and chicken cooked in almond milk in Venice with Katie Caldesi, to tea and cake in rural Tuscany with Melissa Forti, what better way to learn how to eat like an Italian?

Katie Caldesi’s tour of Venice




What ingredient would you bring home in your suitcase?

A bottle of cloudy Prosecco called Prosecco col fondo. It is fermented in the bottle, light, crisp and lovely late morning with brunch.


What recipe would you make at home?  

Our medieval recipe for chicken cooked with almond milk and ginger. Italians generally seem to prefer the flavour of guinea fowl or game, so I was happy to discover this quick chicken stew among the 14th century recipes written by anonymous chef the Anonimo Veneziana.


Where is your favourite restaurant in Venice?

Bistrot de Venise; it's everything a Venetian restaurant should be. 


What one thing should every traveller do when in Venice?  

Get up early or stay up late and walk through the city when it's empty, so you can experience it at its most enchanting. 


What's your most poignant memory of visiting here?

That both my husband Giancarlo and I said ‘we could live here’ at the same time! We imagined buying a small flat just outside the centre. We love Venice so much. 



Emiko Davies’ tour of Florence




What ingredient would you bring home in your suitcase?

Bottarga di Orbetello; not many people know that you can get Tuscan bottarga, but it is by far the most delicious bottarga I've ever tasted! Orbetello's stunning lagoon in the very far south of Tuscany is home to grey mullets, whose eggs are turned into this 500-year-old delicacy. It's hard to find outside of Tuscany, so it's something I'd definitely bring home with me. Just grate it into freshly cooked spaghetti with a squeeze of lemon juice and some olive oil - such a quick, tasty dinner.


What recipe would you make at home?

A recipe I love making is gnudi, which are Tuscan ricotta and spinach dumplings dressed in melted butter and sage. They're essentially the filling for ravioli but they're missing the pasta, hence they're 'nudi' or 'nude'. I've yet to meet someone who doesn't like them.


Where is your favourite restaurant in Florence?

There are too many to count but in Florence, I love the weekend lunch at Teatro del Sale (a buffet style meal where you eat in an actual theatre where the kitchen, and the theatrical calling out of the dishes, is the main show!) and the classic offerings at places like Trattoria Sostanza and the no-frills/no messing about/family feel at Trattoria Casalinga.


What one thing should every traveller to this Florence do?

Visit the natural hot springs in Saturnia! Not the spa, but the warm gushing waters and azure blue pools of the Cascate del Gorello where you can visit anytime you like, for free. There's nothing like an early morning dip or a winter visit when no one else is around.


What's your most poignant memory of living here?

For me, nothing really tops strolling across the Ponte Santa Trinita in Florence late at night, watching the reflection of the lights flicker on the water. I think it must be the most romantic view ever. Even after nearly ten years of living here I'm still caught out every time and have to stop to admire it.




Melissa Forti’s tour of Sarzana




What ingredient would you bring home in your suitcase?

Raspberries! And again raspberries! They are beautiful to look at,  and super delicious when used as decoration over any dessert or as filling for any cake. Raspberries and chocolate? Yes, please!!


What recipe would you make at home?

Definitely a ricotta and chocolate chip tart with grated orange zest. Heaven!


Where is your favourite restaurant in Sarzana?

One of my favorite restaurant here is called Ottone I. The way they cook is quintessentially Italian. Organic olive oil, fresh basil, super fresh ingredients and the bread? They make their own! Also, in a town nearby called Pietrasanta, in Tuscany, there is Trattoria Marzocco. I absolutely love their vegetarian meatballs with mango sauce and I am crazy about their potato gratin. I like to go for simple food, real food made with real ingredients and these places fit my needs. Both serve an amazing selection of local wines.


What one thing should every traveller to this area do?

Eat, drink and be merry like the Italians. 


What's your most poignant memory of living here?

The warmth and sense of community this place has. People here do care for each other  and this is priceless.


If this has inspired you to eat like an Italian at home, enter our competition to win a hamper of Italian treats here


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