Toni Lydecker's Tavola Talk Blog

Italian Spa Day, with a Big Salad

Italy is a geologically active country with lots of warm thermal springs, prized for their therapeutic effects on skin, body and state of mind. Hotels and spas congregate around these termi, and often there are clinics attached, where Italian clients present a doctor’s prescription for consultations, physical therapy and other interventions. I have an Italian [...]

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Tue, July 16 2013 » Italian food, Italian ingredients, Italian lifestyle, salads, Tuscany, Uncategorized » No Comments

Montevarchi: More than a Prada Outlet

It’s easy to spot visitors in search of designer fashion bargains at Space, the Prada outlet in Montevarchi, about 45 minutes south of Florence. Invariably dressed in black, they’re the ones sprinting for the parking lot or train after their shopping spree. Taking in the local sights isn’t on their agenda, but I think they’re [...]

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Tue, June 25 2013 » Italian food, Italian ingredients, Italian lifestyle, travel, Tuscany, Uncategorized » 2 Comments

Steam-Train Ride in Tuscany

I was researching cooking classes in Tuscany, not steam-train experiences, but somehow I ran across a site describing a day-long treno a vapore excursion leaving from Siena. My husband is a huge railroad enthusiast, so I signed us up. On the appointed day, it was worth the fare (29 euros each) to see the small satisfied [...]

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Fri, May 31 2013 » Italian food, Italian lifestyle, Tuscany, Uncategorized, Wine and Beverages » No Comments

Under the Tuscan Rain Clouds

Since we arrived in Tuscany, it’s rained almost every day. From what I hear, it’s been an unusually cold and rainy spring.  And that’s saying something, because Tuscany is actually not the reliably sunny place we’ve been led to believe. Tuscans themselves don’t brag about savoring life under their sun; they know better. Comparing May [...]

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Thu, May 23 2013 » Italian food, Italian ingredients, Italian lifestyle, travel, Tuscany, Uncategorized » No Comments

Spring Greens and Rice Soup

In the Piemonte region of northern Italy where Margherita Aloi grew up, this potful of spring greens in broth, thickened by fat rice kernels and potatoes, is known as a “cleansing soup”…especially for women. I’ve never been altogether sure what “cleansing” means, but it likely has something to do with the greens, rich in digestion-enhancing [...]

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Mon, April 8 2013 » Italian food, Italian ingredients, Italian lifestyle, Soups and Stews, Uncategorized » No Comments