Rogaia Blog

Recipes from the "Decameron": Radicchio-Risotto, Food for Body and Soul

We are starting our fourth week of quarantine today and we feel so priviledged to be healthy and to live in a remote place in the countryside.
But the continuing tragedies with losses in so many families in Italy and the whole world make it hard also for us to keep spirits up.

Therefore cooking and eating together is an important part of our everyday life in the "Decameron". We try to preserve this "momento conviviale" (the moment of being together) which is so wonderfully important in Italy.
It is helping us and hopefully many other families in our country in these difficult times.

Our chef is Amira, who also takes care of our vegetable garden. Today she presents a traditional risotto recipe - with radicchio.

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Snow is falling on our "Decameron"

This morning we woke up to our little world covered in snow, the first in this winter and a rare thing in Umbria anyway.

It feels even more quiet and isolated than before.

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Humor is when you laugh anyway

Two days ago my mom brought us some nice photos when she had to go to Passignano to the pharmacy.

This is the church tower of San Vito, which was already used as a lighthouse for boatmen on Lake Trasimeno before the christianization.

A lighthouse is always a sign of hope in the dark and in stormy times!

How do we get through? Read on!

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"Decamerone"  by J.W.Waterhouse
"Decamerone" by J.W.Waterhouse.

Life as in the "Decamerone" by Boccaccio

For more than a week we are staying in our Umbrian country house in an almost idyllic "protected area".

It feels ghostly: the everyday life (or what is left of it), the fears and the sufferings of our fellow citizens in Italy lie behind the gently rolling hills, the bees are buzzing in the spring sun and hyacinths and lime bushes exude their sweet fragrance.

This reminded us of the book "Decamerone" by Boccaccio. It describes a group of young people who flee to a country house near Florence at the time of the plague in the 14th century. They pass their time with storytelling.

And so we came up with the idea of sending stories, pictures and experiences from our Umbrian hill over the next few days (and weeks?)

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A typical Umbrian Sunday Lunch: "Coniglio del Buon Ricordo"

Last Sunday we cooked a recipe from Ornella's cooking classes:

A "Rabbit to Be Well Remembered"

Admittedly, this is not for vegetarians or lovers of the soft, fluffy little animals with long ears ...
And for the preparation you need a bit of patience and "surgical" skills.
But the result is really worth it!
Read the recipe here

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Umbrian Winter Recipes - Chickpeas and Chard

One of the specialties of Umbria are legumes: lentils, chickpeas and a variety of beans. They are used for an almost endless number of healthy and protein-rich dishes, which are part of the basic diet in Umbria. At La Rogaia we have our own, especially delicious version of a chickpea and chard soup.

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Truffle hunting in Umbria
Truffle hunting in Umbria

It is truffle time in Umbria!

Autumn is the peak season for the precious truffles tubers. Umbria is the largest truffle producer in Italy and many allegedly Piedmontese truffles have been growing under Umbrian trees.
It is an unforgettable experience to accompany a truffle hunter and his dog in the search for the coveted tubers.

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Mamma Ornella
Mamma Ornella

Italian cuisine in autumn - Recipes from Umbria

When autumn is coloring the woods of Umbria and when you can hear the echo of the hunters calling  from hill to hill it is high season for the typical autumn dishes. And Mamma Ornella is in top form in her kitchen at La Rogaia! Here are a few samples from her cuisine ...

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Festa dei Barbari, Castel Rigone
Festa dei Barbari, Castel Rigone

Historical festivals at Lake Trasimeno

Every town and village in Italy has its own festival, which often goes back to centuries-old traditions. While at the famous "Palio di Siena" horse and rider are racing around the Campo, in Passignano sul Trasimeno young men are rowing in old-style wooden boats at the "Palio delle Barche".
And in our village of Castel Rigone, the "barbarians" go wild ...

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Umbria Jazz Festival. Photo: Steve McCurry
Umbria Jazz Festival. Photo: Steve McCurry

Umbria Jazz Festival July 12 to 21, 2019

Every year in July Jazz fans from all over the world flock to Umbria to celebrate the "Umbria Jazz Festival" in the historical town center of Perugia.

Also this year the list of performers from the international jazz and pop world is impressive.

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