August 3, 2008

Summertime- Beating the HEAT!

Summer in Tuscany is fields and fields of sunflowers

When the temps in the countryside hit 100 degrees
the last thing one wants to do in this land with it's fear of air conditioning,
is to turn on the oven and cook!

So I am always on the look-out for non-cooking summer favorites.

Mozzarella and tomatoes
Prosciutto and Melon
Panzanella - the Tuscan bread salad
Tuna and bean cold salad
Insalata Russa- boiled vegetables with mayo, a childhood favorite of my hubby
Cold boiled beets with strachino cheese
Pecorino cheese and pears
Salami and figs
Huge beefsteak tomatoes with EVO and salt

As our local post office is closed, we headed out to the nearest village,
to do our business, mailing, banking etc.

So first stop is breakfast!
For me in the summer I go for a
Latte Freddo Macchiato

my latte macchiato

A long cold glass of milk, "spotted" with a shot of expresso.
Love this local pasty shop as they use Illy coffee,
the lovely glass was also designed by Francesco Illy.
For their summer ideas, the top the glass of their
iced coffee with vanilla infused sugar.

Since we were here, there is always another stop to make, our favorite
"alimentari" little family run grocery store.

dad, daughter and father-in-law

They sell a little of everything one needs, so we picked up our daily fresh bread,
some sliced prosciutto and their house specialty
DONZELLE, little fried baguettes!

These little fried damsels " donzelle" are not avialable everywhere

As soon as we got home, this was lunch!


My other favorite summer coffee drink is Cafe Shakerato, a shaken ice coffee.
Everywhere I go, there is some twist.
Last time I was in Arezzo, it was served in a ice cup.

Last but not least GRANITA!
This is from Antica Delizie, Castellina in Chianti
( they are closed on Tuesday)

Strawberry topped off with lemon,
A real taste of summer.

In Florence I head for Carabe, Grom or Vestri.

Buon Estate.
Stay cool!


  1. Delicious! I'd like one of those lattes, please.

    Too hot to cook here, too, but I'm doing it anyway ... making ice cream.

  2. After discovering last year that the shakerato is the most perfect thing in the heat I am now very irritated that no cafes in London do them!

  3. Great ideas for keeping cool in the heat. We eat lots of salads and grill almost everything - it is rare for the stove or oven to be on when it is hot out - and we have air conditioning!

  4. always seems like so much time to heat up the BBQ for two people!

    Traditional coal. But I guess If I used the grill like I use my kitchen, I could grill up several meals of food.

    Thanks for the idea!