Let the sunflowers shine of their own light

This week sunflowers started blooming in the garden, so I enjoyed catching their bright smile and infinite beauty. What kind of flowers would you like to have into your own garden?

The right time for the Piennolo tomato harvesting

Good news from the kitchen garden! Finally the time for harvesting the cherry “ciliegino” and the small heart-shaped “piennolo” tomatoes arrived. To have 826 gr tomatoes all together in a boat plate in the same morning was like a welcome gift.

Both of the two varieties have a sweet taste and they offer a number of possibilities to use in the cookery. What is more, thinking about the new tomatoes season, I already dried their seeds to collect and keep for next year. Besides, since in the winter season a good supply of tomatoes is also required for our kitchen, it will be necessary to wash and dry accurately and put them in few small bags to store in the freezer.

At this proper, in detail, the excellent “pomodorino del piennolo” variety, which has a time-honoured tradition in the history of gastronomy and in the South of Italy in particular way, is very small, its weight is around 20-25 gr and has a tough skin. So, with respect of old customs, it is common to see this kind of tomato in small bunches typically hanging from the ceiling or on the walls of old rural rooms, where they can stand up to six months and ready to use.

Now, can you tell all the good dishes can be prepared with tomatoes as ingredient throughout the year because of the several varieties and versatility?

Wishing a good new week and be safe everybody!

A new page: In the garden – flowers, vegetables and quotes

Good morning!

At Nordic Lights & Mediterranean Landscapes we just opened a new page dedicated to our works in progress in the garden.

We love spending our spare time being in contact with nature, wondering at its beauty and magnificence as seasons change throughout the year.

While gardening, we will take pictures of the progress in the garden, by choosing and adding quotes from time to time, which will seem to be more suitable to the season or the circumstances.

Would you like to join us?
Welcome and enjoy the trip!

Work in progress in the kitchen garden, puntarelle chicory and grilled tomatoes.

It was a very long, hot week. In Italy, people just celebrated “Ferragosto” and are still enjoying their holidays. In the meanwhile, the kitchen garden calls for some work in progress.

Last Spring, an area for dining was created in the open air under a big bright umbrella, and, during this last week, in the very early mornings, I took the chance to work on a footpath made of old typical local large tiles that are commonly used in Apulia, up on the terraces, for covering the roofs. Years ago, those wide tiles were put away after some works and then well kept. Now, I found it was a good idea to use them again, so they have been accurately set and levelled among the small crushed stones, in order to have a safer path to go across the area.

Besides, it was time also for recycling an old large washtub. At Summertime, when I was a child, my aunt used to place that washtub under a big magnolia tree, and, after filling it with fresh water, around midday, she let me have the best of fun by taking a bath in it like a small duck. Back to our days, that large washtub has been filled with 70 L of good soil and sowed with puntarelle chicory.

Time is flying for the tomatoes plants, which are daily receiving generous rations of water and are keeping on growing and producing excellent small, sweet, heart-shaped tomatoes. This particular variety of tomatoes, called ‘principe borghese’, is pretty vigorous and versatile to be grilled and dried. Indeed, here I grilled some of them in the oven twice (first time 180° C, second time 160° C), after flavouring them with an idea of garlic and fresh herbs like chopped bay, chive, lemon thymus. In the end, I served the grilled tomatoes on slices of home made bread with fresh soft cheese, rucola and drops of extra virgin olive oil. A real delicacy I recommend to try!

Thank you and wishing a beautiful Summer weekend to everybody!

In Stockholm Archipelago

Some time ago… it was an amazing sunny Sunday in Stockholm. The snow was melting and everywhere you could breath the crisp mesmerising atmosphere of early Springtime. It was a great chance for my first boat tour in the Archipelago.

Down here it is a video made of some images, which, during the navigation, my camera captured, both of the magnificent green nature landscapes of Stockholm Archipelago and of the beautiful architecture for company buildings and graceful family homes by the water, along the rocky coasts line. Enjoy it!

Låt oss fira hösten

Hösten är den andra våren när varje löv är en blomma.” – Albert Camus

Höstlöv

Glad Midsommar

Please, stay safe everybody and enjoy Summer days ❤

Affordable Art Fair in Stockholm

The Affordable Art Fair in Stockholm is a wonderful place for women, who are dedicated to art. Let’s celebrate them on this day. Looking forward to visiting the exhibition again some time.

“Love is anterior to Life, Posterior to Death, Initial of Creation, and The Exponent of Earth.” Emily Dickinson

In the park and ornamental gardens of Drottningholm Palace

In the end Spring is right behind the corner again and if Sweden is in your plans, among your best preferred destinations for enjoying holidays, definitely, Drottningholm Palace and its fabulous Baroque styled gardens are worth a visit when you are in the nearby of Stockholm. It takes a very short trip to get there. As I already took chance of writing in the past about my visit to Drottningholm Palace, an exhaustive guided tour, run by well qualified staff, is highly recommended for those, who love to learn a bit more about history, art and culture of Sweden. By the lovely café in front of the palace, you may order a cup of warm coffee and perhaps a delicious cake and then sit by the mesmerizing waters for enjoying the beautiful landscape of nature, which is offered to you, and the sight of ducks and swans chasing each other. On the right side of the palace, follow the path that heads to the free entrance of the gardens. Have a dip in the wonderful architecture of the gardens, where the inspiration for French Baroque motifs comes from Versailles and Chantilly. Enjoy a long walk through the majestic gardens of Drottningholm Palace, explore the full area until you will be on the route for the stunning Lovö Nature Reserve.