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Sunday, January 29, 2012

Buying the Bubbly Online

My favorite part of planning out a dinner is selecting the wine or  champagne. And then deciding whether to include a bubbly champagne or sparkling wine or keeping it to a regular wine. Champagne isn's just for Holiday meals. You can feel free to add it to recipes as well.   Champagne or sparkling wine makes a great addition to risotto and a few other dishes.

Shopping for the wine is almost as fun as preparing the dinner. Browsing through all those beautiful bottles, I always end up discovering something new to try. But one of my favorite wine shopping experiences has been going to and shopping online. What could be easier. Shopping for wine from your own home, in your pajamas, relaxing in front of the computer. No need to experience traffic, looking for a parking space.

The other benefit of shopping online there is that your selection is almost endless, you can feel free to read learn about wines and champagnes and no one hassles you or rushes you to make a decision. You can truly know all about a wine or champagne before you invite it into your home. Try online shopping for your next bottle!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Sisterly Advice

Guest Post  written by our friend Mason Abbott

My sister told me about some great Satellite Internet Packages she had seen advertised for my area and I was really glad she did. I got pretty sick of living out here in the middle of nowhere so far away from my family but it's nice that now at least I can e-mail them while I'm hanging out at home with the kids. My husband had to take this new job because it was such a great opportunity but I don't think he really understands how difficult it is for me to be so far away from my family. My sister and I talked at least two or three times a day on the phone and my mom has gotten in the habit of sending me a card every single day in the mail. I know it's not forever and this is really the best thing for my family but it's hard being so far away from the people I love most especially when I am a stay-at-home mom and get kind of lonely.

Pumpkin, Almonds, Oranges in One Dessert

One of my favorite winter ingredients is pumpkin. I love pumpkin in my ravioli  with risotto,and of course pumpkin pie, but here's a cake from The Basic Art of Italian Cooking : DaVinci Style.

Torta Alla Zucca (Pumpkin Cake)

16 ounces(500gr) pumpkin mashed
2 lbs(250 gr) peeled, shelled almonds
1 ½ cups(300 gr) flour
1 cup (200 gr) sugar
4 eggs
4 juicing oranges
1 tblsp honey

Chop almonds. Place almonds, pumpkin in bowl, add in honey, juice of oranges, egg yolks and sifted flour Blend. In a separate bowl, whip egg whites till firm and fold into pumpkin mixture. Place in buttered 12” pie pan. Bake in oven preheated to 375F (180C) degrees for 30 minutes

Get your copy here or an ebook version exclusively at Kindle

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Coffee Tables

Coffee tables are one of my favorite pieces of furniture. They can be so interesting and have their own personality. But sometimes shopping for one is not so pleasant, except when you do it online, Imagine shopping for a coffee table online and not having to move from your own desk to select and purchase. When you shop online you get the benefit of having helpful customer service, a wide selection of furniture to select from and best of all if they don't have what you are looking for,
they will get it for you. But you have a great selection already at your fingertips of brand new merchandise witing for you to order!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Mix of Modernity and Tradition Here in Milan

 copyright Art of Living, PrimaMedia,Inc 2012/Maria Liberati

Hotel Milano Alpen Resort di Bratto della Presolana. A charming Holiday get away where you can partake in a supreme Christmas dinner and enjoy the sights of many a Nativity scene.

In the tradition of many an Italian Hotel and restaurant, this resort also is connected to a long family history. Opened in 1969, the motive of the Jannotta family was a return to the quiet and well being of the mountains and a valley to discover and inspire someone that wanted to get away for a total relax. The skies and atmosphere filled with fresh air, springs make this also a center for 'benesssere' or wellbeing located about 60 miles form the center of Milan. Modernity and tradition mix here in elegant and discrete harmony. One can also experience a return to nature and explore the more than 130 rare species of flowers that have been classified by botanists.
In 2009, an important restructuring that made this hotel even more 'green', the installation of solar panels which provides heat for 25% of the hotel and provides the heat for 100% of the hotels' hot water supply.
The resturant includs many local products on it's daily menu filled with surprises and interesting combinations of dishes. A large fireplace adds a welcome touch to a comfortable atmosphere to enjoy even after the meal is completed.
The kitchen is under the direction of chef Giovanni Magni, with collaboration of Giovanni Ferrari and master pastry chef Davide Rassella. The dishes created by the 3 masters are tasty with a touch of renewed creativity without forgetting their local tradtions.
This year the Hotel offered a special Christmas and Holiday Menu, here are some of the regal selections.
*Gnocchi with a Duck Ragu
*Locally grown lentils with 'Cotechino' ham
*Cornish Hen wit hchestnut stuffing
*A Semifreddo with torrone
*Fruit Fantasy
*Homemade Panettone
*Chocolate and Orange Marquise
You can find more info on the Ristorante “Il Cantinone” and the Hotel Milano Alpen Resort at

Monday, January 9, 2012

A Tuscan Salad From Day Old Bread...

copyright 2012 Art of Living, PrimaMedia,Inc/Maria Liberati

If you have  leftover  bread and need to use it up before it 'expires' this is a delicious way to use it and you won;t have to let anyone know you were using day old bread
excerpted form The Basic Art of Italian Cooking: DaVinci Style get your copy here or in ebook exclusively on  Kindle

12 slices day old crusty bread
4 tblsps (60 gr) white wine vinegar
1 cup (100 gr)extra virgin olive oil
1/2 lb (250 gr) red ripe tomatoes
1 red onion
1 cucumber
1 handful basil leaves
pinch of salt
freshly ground black pepper

Slice bread into 12 slices. Place bread in bowl with ¼ cup water and 1 tblsp (15 gr) vinegar. Leave for 3 minutes. Remove and squeeze water out from bread. Place wet slices on bottom of salad bowl. Place in tomato slices, sliced cucumber, sliced red onion. Drizzle in olive oil, 2 tblsps (60 gr) vinegar.Pinch of slat, freshly ground black pepper. Toss gently.

For more recipes, get your copy of The Basic Art of Italian Cooking: DaVinci Style here or in ebook exclusively at Kindle

Friday, January 6, 2012

Kitchen Carts

What better addition to reduce clutter in the kitchen than a kitchen cart. And for convenience sake you can also for kitchen carts online, without ever having to leave the comfort of your own home. You can select from many different styles to match or coordinate with your own kitchen Just think of all the extra space for more of those kitchen utensils you will have along  with another piece to add to your kitchen d├ęcor. Finding exactly what you want online is just an email away. If you can't find exactly what you are looking for just ask, you have help that is only a click away

Monday, January 2, 2012

Perfect Potato Torte

Tortino di Portabella e Patate (Portabella and Potato Torte)

1 lb (500 gr) of potatoes

½ cup (100 gr) extra virgin olive oil

2 garlic cloves

1 handful parsley

1 tsp dried oregano

1 lb Portabella mushrooms

pinch of salt

freshly ground pepper to taste

Gently clean mushrooms , slice. Pele potatoes and slice thinly. Steam till beginning to be soft but not cooked thoroughly, Chop garlic and parsley and set aside.

Oil a pie pan, layer first mushrooms , then layer of potatoes, season each layer with with garlic, parsley, oregano ,salt and pepper. Drizzle olive oil on top, Bake in preheated oven to 400 F (200C) for 20 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed. And potatoes are golden brown.