At La Petraia, our menus are based entirely on what the property provides us.   The list is staggering and includes our  fruit, vegetables, wine,  meat, game, honey, milk, nuts, cheese, olives, vinegars and even some of our own grain. We forage for a wide variety of wild nuts, berries, herbs, mushrooms and seeds while…

    Dear Friends,   This week at Petraia we enjoyed the last guests of the 2013 season, and as our year draws to a close it’s time for our annual update.  Just like every other year we were blessed with interesting and appreciative guests and again were fortunate to welcome so many of you back.  Thanks to…

We’re busy at Petraia as high summer starts easing into fall.  I’m sorry I don’t have much time these days to post but here is a quick overview of what we are up to in the kitchen and in the vegetable garden. 1.  Tomatoes are starting to come in strong.  I haven’t yet had time…

A night off in the restaruant, early summer.  So much good food to eat in our garden right now.  I love this time of year.  The peas have just finished but the green and purple beans are starting.  So are the zucchini.  Soon there will be cucumbers and tomatoes, fresh chick peas and zolfini beans…

In order to preserve most food it is important to control the main elements promoting bacterial growth: water and air.  The traditional Italian method of preserving vegetables sott’olio (under oil) is ingenious really.  First the vegetables are thinly sliced and salted.  The salt draws out their water. The next day the vegetables are rinsed and then either…

What I feared might happen when I started this blog has, indeed, happened.  Our season has begun and I have not been able to find the time to write.  It’s a pity really, as there is so much to write about.  But spring is over a month late this year and there is an enourmous…

  It’s time again, the elderflowers are coming into bloom and we are making cordial.   This is a tradition that began with me many years ago when my neighbor Jeremy arrived one day with a bag of elderflowers in one hand and his recipe for cordial in the other.  I tried it out, got…

   A Gratin of Cheese and Potatoes from the Aravis Massif Once again, we are in the French Alps.  The Aravis massif is an impressive chain of mountains situated between Annecy and the elegant ski resort of Megeve. Forming part of the eastern border of the departemant of Haute Savoie this is part of the area…

  This is the time of year the volunteers arrive at Petraia.  Sometimes they are welcome, sometimes not.  It depends how useful they are. Take this celery plant for instance.  Celery is a vegetable we use every day.  But it is a tough one to grow and when it does it is slow and stubborn….

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