by: Jennifer Richardson on
Luisa and Franchino show us how to make the prefect Summer Spritz.
Luisa and Franchino show us how to make the prefect Summer Spritz.
An immersion in song, food and culture!
This year our big singing in Italy event was a cultural and singing immersion spent in 2 stunning locations and our lucky group of singers were given a real treat with 3 brilliant maestros including our much-loved Tony Backhouse.
Although a little sceptical at first we were soon to find the whole village opened their Bars, Pizzerias, Ristorantes, Gelatarias and their arms and voices for us.
After this lovely concert where the Mayor and a large proportion of the village turned out to check us out we celebrated with a shared meal. Guerrino's choir and a group of us prepared our meal. Sally Battson's pavlova's were won the evening! You'll have to ask her the story of the making.. it's a story in itself.
The following 6 days were spent in Florence. A different scene after the gentle village immersion in the countryside of Le Marche. But how could anyone
not love the city of Florence? We stayed in another gorgeous Palazzo, Palazzo San Niccoló, in the artisan’s area near the Arno River.
If you are green with envy, don’t fret, we are working on bringing Edoardo to Australia for some workshops and there will be another Italian singing immersion coming up in 2021 with Edoardo and Guerrino.
There's a similar type of event happening in Buenos Aires in 2020 with Tony Backhouse, Eric Dozier and Gerardo Flores! Take a look at The Gospel Explosion in Argentina >>
Or let us know of your interest now for 2021. >> Contact us
During my 3 month stint in Florence earlier this year I had the pleasure to meet some extraordinary local artists and artisans. Apart from gaining some great new friends, I was thoroughly inspired to pursue an art journey of a difference in Tuscany.
Stay tuned because we have some exciting programmes coming up in 2018 and 2019 with inspiring teachers from around the world. We’ll be offering painting and drawing courses and exploring the seldom discussed, but exciting contemporary art scene and hidden treasures of this area. We’ll be welcomed into studios of outstanding local artists, we'll explore sculpture parks, museums and beautiful sites for both architectural and landscape drawing.
There will be time to relax in the countryside, explore prized vineyards in the Chianti and Brunello regions, eat and cook delicious produce, pick olives and walk some quiet ancient cypress lined roads and drink up the beauty of this region and beyond. It is Italy!
A few more images from Florence and glimpses inside some local artists' studios.
If you would love to bring out your artistic flair in one of the most picturesque and historical regions in Europe, let us know.
"Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of intelligent effort."
and this one..."The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it."
These quotes are both so true when it comes to what we do at The Create Escape, there is a big investment in time and energy to create a great event but what really makes them just so wonderful is in equal parts what we put in and what you put in. It is the joy felt from all that collective effort.— at Montestigliano.
I traveled 30 hours - Sydney - Singapore - London - Zagreb - Split and possied up in a sweet room with a view. I'm one happy camper!
I'm here for a week long recce to further explore the food, wine, singing and culture of the Dalmation Coast and of this little town before our Sailing and Culture trip departs to other islands on Saturday. I have to say that I am not disappointed.
Recce trips can be fun and it has been easy slipping into a routine here. The day begins with a walk through the old town to the cafe so I get my caffeine hit and take in the atmosphere, I then head off to the markets to buy my food for lunch. Walking through the vibrant market and stopping to buy delicious fresh produce is my kind'a heaven.
My favorite little piazza for morning coffee.
Winding my way back through these gorgeous little alleys is such a delight.
And again the food... think fresh, think Mediterranean.. Adriatic to be more precise.
This little town really does it for me with all it's light and shade
Plans for another cooking and culture retreat are nicely brewing.
Contact us know if you wish to know more >>
Sitting down watching two of my all time favorite cooking heroes- Antonio Carluccio and Gennaro Contaldo !
Ok I'm living in Indonesia and here is one of my all time favorite versions of Gado-Gado that I found online! It's so good I had to share it with you, it's by Wil and Wayan.
Gado-gado is one of Indonesia’s most famous dishes, and with good reason– it’s delicious! The combination of sweet, spicy peanut sauce with crisp vegetables and soft potatoes or congealed rice really is something a bit different the first time you try it, too.
There is no set way of making gado-gado. In fact, the word ‘gado-gado’ has another application in the Indonesian language for talking about things that are ‘a bit of a mix’. For example, if someone speaks a mixture of Indonesian and English in one sentence, people might jokingly refer to is as ‘bahasa gado-gado’ (gado-gado language).
So, in keeping with the spirit of gado-gado, please see this recipe as flexible. Once you have the peanut sauce, try using it on other vegetables, too. The only rule is to keep the vegetables crispy and have something else soft in there to soak up the sauce!
250g green beans
100 gr cabbage
125g roasted or fried peanuts
1 small chilli
2 cloves of garlic
25g palm sugar (or 2 tbsp brown sugar)
2 kaffir lime leaves
2cm kencur (white ginger – if you can get it)
salt and pepper (to taste)
Nice things to mix it up with (any or all of the below):
boiled new potatoes (quartered)
lontong (congealed steamed rice)
This can be served warm or cold but always make sure you add the peanut sauce just before you serve it. A sprinkle of fried shallots or peanuts on the top gives the texture a little more interest and a handful of prawn crackers gives it a real authentic touch. You could also drizzle some kecap manis over the gado-gado for a bit of extra sweetness or add some sambal (chilli paste) for a bit more punch.
One of my favorite recipe's from Anna our cook at Montestigliano for you to try.
1.5litres of vegetable stock
Olive oil, salt, pepper
250g aborio rice
Heat oil and add finely chopped onion and radicchio, saute on a gentle heat.
Add a little stock, salt, pepper, simmer until vegetables are almost a sauce. Blend in the gorgonzola.
Melt butter in pan, add rice and cook 1 minute, add stock gradually and stir until rice is al dente.
Blend through the radicchio sauce.
Add parmesan to serve.
We will be adding more recipes to blog so stay tuned.
Join us for Cooking at the Source for a week of cooking and a hilarious good natured local festa with the Donati family or Singing in Siena this year to meet up with Anna and learn direct from the source.