March 15, 2011

Changing Seasons- Il Mio Giardino

I adore when spring comes to Tuscany. My garden begins to gift me free food. This was a really wet winter and most of our winter salads and other plants didn't survive the wet weather or the intense snow here. So as it finally begins to warm up, I am thrilled to be able to head out in the garden again and find food!

The Tuscan kale, cavolo nero, was not really nice enough to harvest until now, when it is almost ready to bloom. So this week we will enjoy our kale, probably in a nice minestrone or maybe just boiled and on toasted bread as a bruschetta drizzled with a fabulous rich Tuscan olive oil.

The front yard is full of wild violets, which release a gentle fragrance as I pass by. The leaves and blossoms are also edible. I may candy some of the blossoms for use later in the year.

One of my favorite "weeds" is wild borage which we just let go crazy. The leaves are great sliced thin in a salad, their flavor is similar to cucumber and quite the surprise. The electric blue blossoms are also edible and are pretty in salads or as garnish on soup.

Next up I will go on a search for wild asparagus. I always see the locals with plastic bags in the fields below my house. This year I will join the hunt!

Happy Spring!

In Italy we have not yet "sprung forward" with daylight savings time and I am adoring the longer days and more sun!

Classes have begun at my new space in Colle Val D'Elsa and it is great to see some familar faces at the market. Just under my house is where the fruit and vegetable vendors are and also my Sicilian and Napolitano friends with their stands.

How lucky can I be!

Do you Twitter?  Wednesday at 3pm ET I will be a guest on the #dreamofitaly chat.

Click here- to see how to participate- I look forward to answering your questions.


  1. your kale is we call that kind(or at least the stores i worked in) dino(as in dinosaur) or blue kale...your violets are amazing...forgot they were edible til you said it and i remembered them on cakes...your weeds...well look like weeds...wild asparagus(asparaguy,remember) sound so good...smoosh all the good stuff through the screen

  2. Congratulations! Your blog has been hand selected and
    recognized by add your to receive our - "Blog Star Award" !

    Your blog was chosen by our webmasters, to honor your hard
    work and dedication in providing a quality web log.
    1)Quality Web Content.
    2)Great Design .
    3)Web Log Everyone Will Love To Read .

    Show off our appreciation and display your award on as many pages of your
    site as you wish, by following the directions on the link below:

    To Claim Award Click Here

    Don't forget to submit your blog to our directory increase your blog

    Click Here To Submit Your Blog To AddYourBlog.Com

    Thank You For The Opportunity To View Your Great Blog,

    Keep Up The Good Work,
    Alessandra P.

  3. Good post man, just looking around some blogs, seems a pretty nice platform you are using.
    Joseph Joseph

  4. Fruits and vegetables are better off bought in season.