Friday, 30 August 2013

You can't find THAT in Italy!

Recently I had a conversation with one of my Twitter friends about tea. Yes, see how British we are; even our conversations revolve around our national beverage! Anyway, needless to say, this conversation about tea soon led to a conversation about biscuits (we both bonded over being chocolate digestive fans), which then led to an idea. And then subsequently to True Blood and Alexander Skarsgard's perfect body...but that's another topic entirely. But back to that idea. How about finding out (via some lovely fellow expats on Twitter) about the foods that we really miss while we're in Italy, and then writing a blog about it? Well, here is that blog. Be prepared to get really hungry. And possibly even book that flight back to the UK asap. Yes, we may have incredible gelato, delicious pizza, creamy mozzarella and tomatoes to die for here in Italy, but let's face it...everyone needs a good pork pie every now and then...

Behold, dear readers, the definitive list of food we really miss (in no particular order). Yes we know, you can get substitutes here, or put something together yourself but...well, it's just not the same is it...
  • crisps: cracked black pepper and sea salt, roast chicken, prawn cocktail and sweet chili, in particular
  • beans on toast
  • fish, chips, mushy peas
  • Assam tea and Tetley tea
  • crumpets (this is also one of my personal choices)
  • pork pies
  • fish pie
  • mint Aero (yes!)
  • real bacon with brown sauce (it'd be ketchup for me!)
  • steak pie
  • saveloys
  • English sausages
  • cheddar cheese and Wensleydale cheese
  • raspberry and white chocolate biscuits
  • cinnamon bagels
  • jam doughnuts
  • Thai curry
  • Greg's sausage rolls and Cornish pasties
  • Cadbury's chocolate
  • Ribena
  • Marmite
  • Galaxy chocolate
  • Irn Bru
  • orange Club biscuits
  • chocolate hobnobs

Any other expats out there, what foods do you really miss while out of your home country? And here's a tip from us: try Lidl! Sometimes you can find a sneaky packet of cheddar cheese lurking in the fridge section...

I'd like to thank my wonderful Twitter followers for helping me with this *super* important research, in particular the #britpack. Read more about this excellent little group here, over at my friend Ali's blog.

Thursday, 29 August 2013


Aaaaaaaand I'm back with another food post!

I recently discovered that the panini I had bought to eat on a particular day had been forgotten about. Left to go stale. No longer fresh and soft.

So, instead of seeking out some ducks (which would have been difficult because I swear, in the 2 years and 9 months that I've lived here, I haven't seen a single one...) I decided that the only logical thing to do was rinse the bread in water, mix it with some fresh tomatoes, add salt, oregano and then finally, lashings of olive oil.

That, my friends, is what you call an acquasala.

TIP: rinse the bread. Don't soak it. Otherwise it will just be soggy bread, and no one wants that...

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Terrific Tremiti

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of exploring a part of Italy that I had never seen before, despite it being only an hour or so from where I live. The place is question was the Tremiti Islands. For those of you who aren't too familiar with them, these islands are an archipelago in the Adriatic Sea, just north of the beautiful Gargano Peninsula. In Italian, 'tremiti' actually means tremors, which relates to the fact that this area has a history of earthquakes (luckily we didn't experience any!). The islands are a major tourist attraction, and you can get a ferry from the following locations: Termoli, Vieste, Rodi Garganico and Capoiale. We left from the latter, but instead of taking the ferry, had the pleasure of touring this wonderful islands on a private boat. There were 12 of us in total and the whole trip was simply amazing. Stunning weather, great company, and some of the most beautiful sea I have ever seen. I'll just let the photos do the talking now...

If you're thinking of visiting the islands, definitely try and get your hands on a private tour. As before mentioned, there are lots of ferries available, but these often drop you off on the main island, and there is only one main sandy beach.  A private boat may cost a little more, but if there is a group of you, it is definitely worth it. Oh and another thing; if you go in July or August? Take a family sized bottle of suncream, a hat, and more water than seems necessary. You will need it!

Monday, 26 August 2013

The best way to end a weekend...?

This weekend I spent time with my boyfriend at his parents' little house by the sea. We had an incredible barbecue, spent some time lazing on the beach and generally enjoyed a bit of r&r. But if you think this is going to be a 'what I did this weekend' post, you are very much mistaken. Because there's really only one thing you need to know about this weekend: we went to Pizzicato.

If you are unsure about what Pizzicato is, please click here for more info (it's seriously worth it to click on the link...hunger inducing pics do await you). Myself and the man well and truly indulged, and picked up this box of tasty treats. I can't think of a better way to end the weekend, can you?

Have a great week folks!

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Holidaying with the Pope (sort of)

Recently, a couple of friends have pointed out that my little blog has a heavy food theme to it. A bigger helping of tomatoes than sunshine, shall we say. Being a self confessed food fanatic, (and by that I do mean that I prefer eating it to cooking it...) I shall continue to post regularly about various gelato/pasta/pizza/sweet treats that I scoff. Everyone needs a bit of #foodporn in their lives, don't they.

However, today's post doesn't actually revolve around food! Well, not completely anyway. Being in such a beautiful country, I have made it my objective to explore as much of it as possible. Last weekend I spent some time in stunning Cilento (and met up with some wonderful Twitter friends, click here for more on that!) and the weekend before that, my lovely Italian man treated me to a weekend in Castelgandolfo, which is about 15 miles south east of Rome. It's also home to the Pope's official holiday residence, dontcha know. Unfortunately, we didn't get to spend a day lounging by the pool with the head of the Catholic church (because yes, I'm quite certain that's what he does when he's on holiday...quite certain...) but we did stay in a lovely hotel (Hotel Castelvecchio), explored the winding cobbled streets, witnessed the marvellous Lake Albano and ate very well indeed (I said it wasn't a completely food-less post). Here are some snapshots of our little weekend away...

The child was not with me. And yes, I have of course unwittingly taken a photo of a Pasticceria...

Yes, we went out on a pedalo.

Just the start of our antipasto feast at a great restaurant called Arte & Vino.

The culinary delights just kept coming.

The stunning view from our hotel
 Hope you're all having a great week! :o)

Monday, 19 August 2013

Cilento and friends...

Are you a Twitter user? If the answer to this is yes, then first of all make sure you click the little button over to the left and start following me ;) Secondly, if you do like to use Twitter, then you may well have made the bold and exciting move of actually meeting up in person with a new found online companion. I am proud to say that this weekend I did just that.

After having decided to spend a relaxing couple of days in the beautiful part of Italy that is Cilento, I realised that two of my favourite Twitter people live right in the area. Cue some frantic tweeting and lots of excitement, and our Twitter date was set up! The lovely couple in question are Ali (@cilentoangel) and John (@Cilentoman), who I have had the pleasure of knowing for over half a year now, and have been living in Cilento for almost 3 years. Needless to say, I was thrilled to have the chance to meet them, but also a little bit nervous too!

I really needn't have worried at all, because right from the moment we met, we just clicked! With a big grin, John bounded up to me and introduced himself, before I launched at Ali with a massive cuddle! I introduced my boyfriend who I had brought with me, and we all went for a little drink before heading to a big family run restaurant for some tasty pasta. The men, being typical men, had a big plate of grilled meat of course!

The evening was finished off perfectly with a stroll and a gelato. When it came to saying goodbye, I really didn't want to! But it was lovely to have finally met these two wonderful people, and I absolutely can't wait to meet them again!

Unfortunately, we were having such a good time, that we forgot to take even one photo. So I will leave you with some wonderful views from the place me and my man stayed at in Cilento (

Have a great week everyone, and get organising your Twitter meet up asap! :)

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Food for thought..

I don't know about any of you other expats out there, but when I land on British soil after a long stint in Italy, it doesn't take me long to sink my teeth into a whole host of 'British' food. It's not that I really miss it too much when I'm in Italy (authentic, traditional, delicious Italian food everywhere I go? Now who could complain about that...) but I most definitely take advantage of it when I'm in the UK. My first snack of choice when I arrived at the airport this time? A flapjack. I don't think I'd even thought about flapjacks for months, but when I got my hands on one, I savoured every single bite. As my week in England progressed, I made it my goal to enjoy as many yummy foods as possible (see below). And now I'm back in Italy? It's pizza, pasta, proscuitto and gelato in large quantities, although not all at the same time, of course...

A trip to Tewkesbury market led us to these yummy preserves. The banoffee curd? Incredible.

Book. Tea. Biccies. YES.

Beef stew and dumplings.

Some profiteroley chocolatey biscuity thing.

Gooseberry and toffee cheesecake. (These two deserts weren't my personal choices by the way, but I felt it necessary to include them as they got great feedback)

My last meal of the week? It had to be my aunt's UNBELIEVABLE lamb curry, homemade naan bread and cous cous. To die for.

Yes, I did have SOME healthy food...even if it was served with cream and meringue..ahem!

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

English Treats

Hello folks!

I am currently writing to you from my lovely home county of Worcestershire, England. Yes, I fled the soaring southern Italian temperatures to, ahem, 'enjoy' a bit of rain here in the heart of England. I have also been enjoying (minus the sarcasm this time) pork pies, Poirot and of course, pub grub. 

This morning, the sun decided to grace us with its presence (thank you sun) so me and my folks ambled off to the little town of Winchcombe. It was lovely to have a wander around this true gem of a town and poke our noses into the cute little gift shops. 

However, it was what we did after our bumble around Winchcombe that really put a smile on my face: a pub lunch. We stopped at the Apple Tree Inn (Stockwell Lane, Wodmancote, Cheltenham) and had a good, hearty meal. I was also delighted with my dessert choice, which was a Jamaican Ginger Cheesecake....I'll let the photos do the talking!

courgette, chick pea and cous cous tart

Mum's summer pud

And the part that you have all been waiting for....

Sinful yet

Have a great day! :D