Archive for the ‘Flowers for foods’ Category


Nottingham Forest

May 14, 2010

One of your friends calls you and says: “I’ve just finished my exams. Would you like to celebrate it with me?”.

“Yes, of course!” is the normal answer.

After a little hesitation about (most common) “technical” problems (dinner or happy hour? After dinner or club? Where? Time?), you says: “I’ve heard about a bar, not so far from here, that should be really nice: what do you think?”.

…………………………The story goes on……………………..and the result is……………………………………

The bar is called “Nottingham forest”, and this kind of conversation really happened to me some days ago. The result? I’ve just come back home from this bar!

I would never expected it would be so… great! It is among the 50 best bars of the world, it is very small (tonight particularly crowed, but I think it should be always like that) and the interior reminds a real forest, with a peculiar décor and thousands of different bottles.




At this point, you might ask what is the connection with flowers: good question, but a little bit rash :-) You should know that, among the hundreds of cocktails available (the menu is like a book!), there are some made by flowers! Just few examples:

  • Rose’s
  • Rose Mojito
  • Violet Mojito (rum, violet essence, lime, mint)
  • Garden cooler
  •  Floral Bouquet Frozen Daiquiri
  • Springtime
  • Jamaican Flower: for this, they use a real fleshy flower, cultivated in Yucatan, from which you can obtain a sweet juice, mixed with fruits and tequila.

This is Summer Cooler, the one I’ve chosen, made by orange, lemon and petals of roses… delicious!


Another peculiar thing is that you can have a tasting “Fiore di Curaro”. Curaro is a strong poison that paralyzes your muscles, but now it is used to reawaken very particular tasting sensations.

The sampling consists in consuming your flower with calm and meditation, in order to have a rich feeling of freshness and lightness. The cocktail matched with it is made by the infusion of the flower and a juice or a spirit you like most.



The idea of just few people found such an amazing acceptance that now it has a great success and it has opened here, in Milan, but also in Parma and New York, providing special nights for the happiness and the palate of lots of (not only) young people… How a small group can work so well!


Cioccolati Italiani: when a rose meets chocolate, they become business!

May 4, 2010

My attempt with the chicken with herbes de Provence has been pretty successful: I made my father taste it and he said it was good! (unbelievable, because he has always  something to criticize!)

But let’s see floral food on a large scale, and go back to Milan: what provides, instead, our city? As usual, I walked around to find something interesting, and one of the most delicious discover I’ve ever made was at Cioccolati Italiani, an ice-cream shop in Via De Amicis 25, between Colonne di San Lorenzo and S. Ambrogio. Among their tastes, they have got Rose, made by jam of petals of roses and the normal base of ice-cream.




The manager, Michele Andretta, told me he wanted to create a new, different and original taste: rose has been always used for cooking: why not for an ice-cream too? Therefore, he had the idea to combine it with white chocolate: and the result is simply…wonderful! No strange excipients, no strange starting points: just natural ingredients, passion, experience, will to satisfy their customers’ palates.



“Behind me, there is an entrepreneur. You always need an entrepreneur if you want to start a commercial enterprise”. This was the manager’s answer when I asked him how his ice-cream shop is organized. He continued telling that it is an inedited concept, realized by a workgroup which has involved some important names, such as Franco Costa, the president of Costa Group, Paolo Barichella, a famous designer and opinion leader for food design, Roberto Lobrano, one of the most notorious ice cream maker, who has created the “menu” of the shop, and the chocolate maker Silvio Bessone, a special artisan able to supply with the raw materials from their places of origin to the creation of the final product. Then, a team of people full of experience, motivated to emphasize the quality of  the chocolate and to please ones who have a sweet tooth, and helped by some employees, who inevitably work in a soooooo sweet contest!


Pelindaba:a unique venture, environmentally and economically sound

May 2, 2010

For more information about the products I used, and further more, take a look at the website:

It is an unusual and interesting farm on San Juan Island, which has undertaken many activities, follows particular ways of production and provides a wide range of peculiar products.


If I cook…

May 2, 2010

You know that…with flowers you can also cook? It could be pretty intuitive, ok, but I’ve never tasted a floral food. Therefore, I decided to try a new recipe, and cook it on my own. Telling my mom  this idea, she told me that some of our relatives from America, who came here three months ago, brought us some products with lavender. What better news? (Moms do usually have a lot of secrets in their draws!)



Then, I started looking for some recipes using lavender, and I decided to try with this one:

Chicken with Herbes de Provence

Here is the recipe:


4 chicken boneless breast halves (with skin)*
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon herbes de Provence**

* Do not remove skin until after baking, as the skin helps to retain moisture in the meat.

** Herbes de Provence – An assortment of dried herbs said to reflect those most commonly used in southern France. The mixture commonly contains basil, fennel seed, lavender, marjoram, rosemary, sage, summer savory, and thyme.

Place chicken breasts, single layer, into an ungreased 13×9-inch baking dish.

In a medium-sized bowl, combine olive oil and the herbes de Provence together. Pour marinade over chicken breasts. Cover and marinate at room temperature for 20 minutes or refrigerate to marinate longer (turning meat over several times).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. (180° C.) Bake, uncovered, 25 to 30 minutes or until a meat thermometer registers an internal temperature of 165 degrees F (juices will run clear when cut with the tip of a knife); basting several times during cooking. Remove from oven and serve immediately.


These are some products that my relatives gave us.




Lavender Gourmet Pepper: use in cold or warm salads, in soups, on grilled meats and chicken, and in any recipe where an exotic pepper would enhance flavor.

Organic Culinary Lavender: is produced solely from the very first harvest each summer for optimum flavor. It is then twice sifted and sorted by hand. Used over the centuries, culinary lavender has a longer pedigree than rosemary, for which it can be readily substituted in any recipe. Uniquely among herbs, it also works quite differently as wonderful flavoring in baked goods and other sweet foods and beverages.

Lavender Gourmet Honey: infused with Pelindaba’s culinary grade Provence lavender, this honey is delicious on toast or scones, as a glaze over pound cake, as a sweetener in tea, and in marinades for roasted meats an chicken.

Lavender Gourmet Sugar: made with Pelindaba’s culinary grade “Provence” lavender, this sugar is delicious in whipped cream, in breads and cakes, or in sprinkled on fresh fruit.

In my recipe, I used “Lavender gourmet pepper” and “Organic culinary lavender”.