Meet your local guide in Milan: Veronica

Here we go again with another interesting interview! This time we go back to Milan and meet the local guide Veronica. Enthusiastic to meet new people coming all over the world, during the tour Veronica will make you feel at home!

So continue to read and learn more about her!

Hi! I'm Veronica

Hi! I’m Veronica

Name:  Veronica

Nationality and Hometown? Italian, I was born and live in Busto Arsizio, a little country not far from Milan.

Name of tour you lead and where: I lead all the tours available in Milan, in the specific: Food tours, Segway tours, the Duomo tour and the street art and tasting tour.

If you are not from the city you are based in for tours, what originally brought you there? I studied at the university in Milan and fell in love with the city!

Your favorite part of the tour: Interacting with people coming all over the world

Favorite Local Restaurant in your city: The Osteria dei Vecchi Sapori in Isola district.

One thing visitors to your city can’t miss: Duomo and its magnificent architecture, details and history

Favorite Travel Quote?  Travel, eat, chill, repeat!

What’s next on your travel bucket list? Messico

What is your favorite Italian city to travel to?  The Eternal City of Rome

What’s your best travel tip for those coming to visit Italy? Try to leave the city not only like a tourist but also like a local and breathe the different atmosphere you find everywhere

Risotto alla Milanese

Risotto alla Milanese

What’s the food that someone must try in your city before leaving? Milanese risotto

What’s the most memorable experience you’ve had on one of your tours? One of the clients recently was so impressed by the Duomo that started crying in front of its beauty.

What do you like most about leading tours? Getting in contact with many different cultures and stories

What makes your tour unique? I always try to let clients feel like at home among friends

During the Milan Food Walking Tour

During the Milan Food Walking Tour

If Milan is your next destination and you are interested in some Italian tasting experience, book with us your Milan Food Tour and ask for Veronica! Promise, you won’t regret it!

A typical Tuscan pastry: Budino di Riso

A typical Tuscan pastry: Budino di Riso

Named after its principal ingredient for the filling, the Budino di riso is a typical Tuscan pastry, specifically coming from Siena.

This little pastry, eaten mostly during breakfast and accompanied by a cup of cappuccino, makes everyone droll not only for its cute appearance but also for its flavour. If you are travelling in Italy, you will surely encounter this dessert all over Florence, so come and try it!

A typical Tuscan pastry: Budino di riso

A typical Tuscan pastry: Budino di riso

There is a good news! It’s easy to bake! Here’s below its recipe.

Ingredients:

For the shortcrust pastry:

  • 200gr superfine flour
  • 100gr butter
  • 100gr sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • grated lemon peel

For the filling:

  • 1/2 lt milk
  • 150gr rice
  • 4 spoons sugar
  • 4gr baking powder
  • aroma (lemon or vanilla)
  • powdered sugar
Budino di Riso

Budino di Riso

Procedure:

Suggestions before the start: the shortcrust pastry must rest for about 30 minutes in the refrigerator and the boiled rice must cool down. Calculate the needed time for the preparation of this dessert.

  1. Shortcrust pastry: Knead the cold butter with the flour. Add the other ingredients kneading all together quickly. When you obtain a compact mass, roll it up with the plastic wrap and let it rest in the refrigerator.
  2. Filling: In a pot pour the milk. When it boils add the rice and the aroma (as you prefer grated lemon peel or vanilla). Mix continuously until the rice is totally cooked and there is no trace of milk. After obtaining a mass, add two spoons of sugar and let it cool down. Attention: If you don’t mix the rice, it will stick to the bottom of the pot and it has a burned flavour.
  3. Cream: Whip the egg white until stiff. Add the egg yolks, a pinch of salt, two spoons of sugar, baking powder and the stiff egg white into the mass of rice. Mix all together lightly.
  4. Roll the shortcrust pastry and form little circles using a cake tin. Put them in muffin stamps. Pour the mixture of rice and put the stamps into the oven at 170°C for about 30 minutes.
  5. When the little budino di riso are cooked, take them out of the oven and sprinkle the powdered sugar on the top!

Has this little pastry taken your attention? Are you an Italian food lover? Are you coming to Florence? Join our Florence Food Walking Tour and prepare your palate to a journey into the authentic and typical savours of Tuscany!

The authentic Focaccia di Recco with cheese

The authentic Focaccia di Recco with cheese

This authentic Ligurian recipe, the Focaccia with cheese, is a specialty of Recco that young and old love a lot.

Its history dates back to the third Crusade, when the farmers of Recco were obliged to seek refuge in the hinterland and had only available water, bran flour, oil and cheese. They created this delicious recipe and since then it became part of the local and gastronomic heritage. In the 1997, the brand “Authentic Focaccia with Cheese of Recco” was created and since 1955, in Recco, the “Festa della Focaccia” is celebrated every year during the last week of May.

Are you interested in its recipe? It’s so easy to make, so come on, read on and follow the instructions!

Focaccia di Recco with Cheese

Focaccia di Recco with Cheese

Ingredients for the dough :

  • 400g Manitoba Flour
  • 250ml Water
  • 10g Salt
  • 40ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Ingredients for the filling:

  • 30ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 10g Salt
  • 500g Stracchino

Procedure:

A portion of Focaccia

A portion of Focaccia

  1. Mix water (at room temperature) and oil in a carafe and melt the salt.
  2. Start to knead the ingredients and add 1 spoon of flour at a time.
  3. Continue to knead until you obtain a smooth and elastic dough.
  4. Move the dough on a work surface area slightly oiled and form a rectangular portion. Then wrap it and leave it in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
  5. Grease with oil a 35x25cm baking tray.
  6. Take the dough and divide it in two parts. Stretch out one part with a rolling pin until you form a puff pastry of 2mm. Transfer it on the baking tray and stretch very well every corners and sides.
  7. Put some pieces of stracchino, slightly distant from each other, with the help of a spoon.
  8. Stretch the other piece of dough and  lay it down on the baking tray covering the cheese.
  9. Remove the extra dough and pinch the edges with the fingers.
  10. Distribute the oil and the salt on the surface.
  11. Cook your Focaccia in a static oven at 250° for 15 minutes or in a ventilated oven for 8-10 minutes.
  12. Serve the Focaccia hot and savour how delicious it is.

ATTENTION: It is not advisable to conserve the focaccia in the frizer.

Focaccia with Cheese

Focaccia with Cheese

Don’t miss the chance to taste the original one during our Milan Street Art and Food TourYou are gonna love it! Book now with us! We are waiting for you in Milan.

The half-moon pizza: Panzerotto

The half-moon pizza: Panzerotto

Characteristic of the central and southern regions of Italy, the Panzerotto is a circle of stuffed dough, closed on itself to form a half moon. The panzerotto was born from the poorest Apulian culinary tradition: people used what remained from bread’s dough and cooked it with pieces of cheese and tomatos. Prepared with the same dough of the pizza, the typical panzerotto is filled with tomatos and mozzarella. It can be cooked into oven or fried in extra virgin olive oil. To fully savour the product, the panzerotto should be eaten hot.

Panzerotto

Panzerotto

Did the panzerotto hit your curiosity? Read on to know how to make it!

Here’s the ingredients:

  • 500gr flour
  • 300ml lukewarm milk
  • 25gr butter
  • 12gr fresh beer yeast
  • 5gr salt
  • 1tsp sugar

For the filling:

  • 150gr tomato flesh
  • 250gr mozzarella
  • Oregano q.s.
  • Basil q.s.
  • Salt q.s.
  • Oil q.s.

Procedure:

  1. Mix well flour and butter. It’s possible to substitute butter with 2tbs of oil.

    Homemade Panzerotto

    Homemade Panzerotto

  2. Melt well the yeast with the lukewarm milk and add it a bit at a time into the flour’s mixture, add sugar and lastly the salt.
  3. Form a compact and elastic block. Set it aside and let it rise for about two hours in a hot place.
  4. While the mixture rises, prepare the filling: in a bowl mix tomato, basil, oregano, oil, salt and mozzarella cut in cubes.
  5. Once the dough has redoubled its volume, transfer on a wooden pastry board and stretch it well with the help of some flour. Try to obtain a puff pastry of about 6-7mm (not too much thin).
  6. Using a 10-12cm bowl form some circles. Stretch again the remaining dough and create other circles.
  7. In the centre of every pieces, put some filling. Pour the edges with some water and close it using the fingers and make the form of a half moon. Seal them well using the fingers or a fork.
  8. Heat up the oil in a pot or a pan and fry all of the panzerotto until they become gold on both sides. If you want to use the oven, cover the panzerotto with egg yolk and cook them in ventilated oven at 180° or static oven at 190° for 20-25minutes.

 

If you are coming to Italy, you can’t leave the country without trying the original panzerotto! Join the Afternoon Food Tour with Beer Tasting in Milan and prepare your palate for this delicacy!

Meet your local guide in Rome: Alessia

Come to Rome and choose now a food tour! Your Roman, local and knowledgeable guide Alessia is impatient to meet you and show you the Italian culinary traditions! After the tour with Alessia, you’ll love more the Eternal city!

Read on and start to know better your local guide, she has something to share with you!

Meet your local guide: Alessia

Meet your local guide: Alessia

Name:  Hi! My name’s Alessia

Nationality and Hometown? I’m Italian and I live in Rome

Name of tour you lead and where: I lead the Food Pizza & Colosseum Tour and the Easy Entrance Colosseum & Vittoriano tour  😉 )

If you are not from the city you are based in for tours, what originally brought you there? I’m from Rome

Your favorite part of the tour:  The end, when our travellers tell me how fun and interesting the tour was. This makes me very happy.

Selfie during the tour

Selfie during the tour

Favorite Local Restaurant in your city: My neighbour’s, she is a great cooker! I also love the little trattorias in Trastevere district.

One thing visitors to your city can’t miss: The 360 degree view from the terrace of the VittorianoSomething that takes you breath away!

Favorite Travel Quote? The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. – Marcel Proust

What’s next on your travel bucket list? I’ll take a flight and go oversea to see the beautiful Australia & New Zeland.

What is your favorite Italian city to travel to? Don’t have only one. I love Burano, Elba Island and Sicily… but one of my favourite places in Italy is Matera, magical and without time.

What’s your best travel tip for those coming to visit Italy? Be careful when crossing the street!! 😀 And wear comfortable shoes for an amazing discovery of our beautiful cities through our bike, segway and walking tour! 🙂

Montanara pizza

Montanara pizza

What’s the food that someone must try in your city before leaving? Gelato and the montanara pizza! Both of them are in our pizza tour 😉 )

What’s the most memorable experience you’ve had on one of your tours? Difficult question! Every tour is a very special experience for me but for sure I will never forget the face of the travellers when they taste the delicious food and drinks during the tour! It’s so satisfying to see that they are enjoying the Italian food as well as Italian do.

What do you like most about leading tours? Meeting people from all over the world and have the opportunity to share my knowledge and my passion for my beautiful country.

What makes your tour unique? The love that I have for my job… I always try to make them fun & educational at the same time.

Are you a food-lover? Then come to Rome and book now a Rome Food Pizza and Colosseum Tour with Italy city tours and ask for Alessia 😉

An Italian common street food: Porchetta

An Italian common street food: Porchetta

An Italian common street food: Porchetta

An Italian common street food: Porchetta

Porchetta is a savoury, fatty and moist boneless pork roast typical of central and northen Italy. It consists in a deboned, emptied and seasoned pig. Although its origin is still uncertain, the porchetta is commonly found as a street food. The realisation is not difficult! Do you want to cook it at home? Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 5kg pig loin: deboned and with pork rind
  • 1kg piggy shoulder
  • 2 tsp minced black pepper
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbs fennel seeds
  • salt
  • 8 bundles wild fennel plant
  • lard

Procedure:

  1. Debone and remove the pork rind from the piece of shoulder. Clean the pulp obtained from the clots and set it aside.
  2. Take the pig loin and regulate its shape by levelling off the sides. Separate the pulp of the pork rind from the short side, the one where the roll will be closed.
  3. Distribute the pulp (set aside earlier) over the whole pig loin to obtain a uniform layer. Season the inside part of the loin with fennel seeds, abundant salt, pepper and garlic powder. Then add also the bundles of wild fennel and in the end roll the loin very tight.
  4. Tie the loin with twine and protect the two extremities not covered by the rind with aluminuim foil.
  5. Transfer the porchetta on a baking tray and put into the oven at 160°C for 3 hours. Then, remove the aluminium foil and put the porchetta on a grill, in order to lift it from the tray. Distribute on the surface an abundant quantity of lard and oven it again at 200°C for 1 hour. During the last 10 minutes, raise the temperature to the maximum level.

    Porchetta Sandwich

    Porchetta Sandwich

How to eat the porchetta: The Porchetta can be served cut into slices or in a sandwich. The best when it’s just cooked.

Come to Italy and try the original porchetta during our Afternoon Food Tour with Beer Tasting in Rome you will surely love it!

 

Meet your local guide in Rome: Renato

During a pizza tour

During a pizza tour

Planning your vacation to Rome? Then you have to check which tour to book and who’s the best guide in town!
Renato is an energetic, passioned Italian guide who fell in love with Rome at a young age and his passion for the Eternal city is still burning greatly! If you’re a foodie and want to try something different that takes you our of the beaten paths, Renato and his food tours, are perfect for you: a great mix of culture, italian delicacies, humor and lots of smiles!

Name:  My name is Renato and it’s hard for people to get it right so don’t worry if you mispell it or misunderstand, at the end of the day, I’m just glad if you can remember me and our experience together 😉

Nationality and Hometown? Italian. Southern Italian to be exact. I’m originally from a small town of the Campania region. but i’ve been living in Rome since 1999.

Name of tour you lead and where: I’m leading Food Tours, Bike&food tours and segway tour too!

Hi, this is Renato!

If you are not from the city you are based in for tours, what originally brought you there? I moved to Rome to study, at least that’s what I told my parents to convice them, but I did graduate. Above all, I was eager for life and that you can really get in a big town such as Rome 🙂

Your favorite part of the tour: The orange trees park on the Aventine Hill. I could stay there for hours, looking at the city from that perspective.

Orange Garden at Aventino

Orange Garden at Aventino

Favorite Local Restaurant in your city: Restaurant “Maccheroni”, near the Pantheon. The carbonara they make is to die for!!

One thing visitors to your city can’t miss: Trastevere area: it’s charming, intriguing and still medieval. A unique part of Rome.

Favorite Travel Quote? A Roma, non basta una vita (Silvio Negro) – For Rome, a lifetime is not enough.

What’s next on your travel bucket list?  New Orleans, Mississipi! I want to breath and leave the jazzy groove and try the cajun and creole specialty! Can’ wait!

What is your favorite Italian city to travel to?  Venice. It might sound a cliche but I can’t help it!

What’s your best travel tip for those coming to visit Italy? Come prepared and bring a lot of patience too 🙂

What’s the food that someone must try in your city before leaving? Jewish style artichoke

Carciofi alla Giudia

Carciofi alla Giudia

What’s the most memorable experience you’ve had on one of your tours? An elderly couple asked me to stop right in the spot where 30 years earlier they had taken a picture and they wanted to take the same picture.

What do you like most about leading tours? Good vibes from the people

Renato on tour!

Renato on tour!

What makes your tour unique? Enthusiasm. I get excited every time I tell people stories about Rome.

A most special Italian bread: Cecina

A most special Italian bread: Cecina

Cecina, Italian special bread

Cecina, Italian special bread

Have you ever heard about “La Cecìna”? If not, la Cecina is an easy-to-make savoury pie composed of chickpeas’flour, water, salt and extravergin olive oil.

Despite it is considered as a poor meal and used as an alternative to bread, its Genoese’s origin is quite interesting! The legend of the Cecìna narrates that it was born by chance in 1284, when Genoa defeated Pisa in the battle of Meloria. One day Genoa’s galleys were involved during a storm and the drums of oil and some sacks of chickpeas that they were transporting, spilled and mixed with salty water. The sailors recovered what they could but some of them refused to eat it and left them under the sun. The result? It became a kind of fritter. The next day, starving to death, they ate the mixture and discovered its deliciousness! Once came back to Genoa, the sailors tried to cook it into oven and the discover was incredible.

Nowadays, the Cecina is a typical dish of the Mediterranean coasts, especially in Ligurian and Tuscan kitchens.

If the curiosity hits you, try this simple recipe.

Ingredients for two pans of 22cm (diameters):

  • 180g chickpeas’ flour
  • 600ml water
  • 1tbs salt
  • 80ml olive oil
  • Black pepper
A slice of Cecina

A slice of Cecina

Procedure:

To prepare the Cecina, you will simply need a bowl and a whisk. Put the chickpeas’ flour into the bowl, add salt and gradually the water, and in the meanwhile mix well the compost with the whisk in order to avoid lumps. Add half of the olive oil and the remaining water. At this point you will obtain a very liquid mixture. Cover the bowl with wrap and let it rest for about 30 minutes. What remained of the olive oil will be used to cover the two molds (it doesn’t matter if the oil isn’t equally distributed all over the surfaces). After this, distribute the mixture into the two pans. Preheat the oven at 200-220° and cook the Cecina for 15-20 minutes. If you cook the two pans at the same time, remember to alternate them on the ledges of the oven.

The Cecina is ready when the surface is gold and the peel seems to lift. To finalize the recipe, sprinkle the Cecina with black pepper and serve it hot. It can be served as appetizer or as a second course.

If you are food-lover and especially if you love Italian food, book an Afternoon Food Walking Tour in Florence with us! There’s a lot more to be discovered!

The best aperitivo in Milan

The best aperitivo in Milan

Happy spring everyone! Weather is already getting good here in Italy and aperitivo time is just at its best! Finally, tables can be also outside and sunlight is on until 7 pm already! A great joy for all the locals here, who just wait for the moment in which they can enjoy their evening drinks outdoor.

best aperitivo in milan

While in Italy, keep your eyes open! You can find the best places where to have your aperitivo by looking at the crowd outside the bar. In case you want to be sure you get the right places, here is a short list for Milan!

Stylish aperitivo: Mag Cafè, Ripa di Porta Ticinese al 43

best aperitivo in milan

Right in the middle of Milanese nightlife, you’ll find plenty of places where you can have an aperitivo! This street, called also Naviglio Grande, can be really crowded and it might look hard to find the right place! At Mag Cafè you’ll find a cosy, hipster and welcoming atmosphere. It is one of the coolest bars where to have aperitivo and in one of the coolest place in Milan! Navigli is also one of the destinations of our tours! Check out all Milan Tours with us

The historical aperitivo, Bar Basso, via Plinio 39

best aperitivo in Milan

Bar basso is one of the oldest bars in Milan, where the famous Negroni sbagliato was invented. The place still nowadays holds the charm of the past days and yet the sparkle of the contemporary way of Italian living. The neighbourhood itself is nothing particularly interesting but the bar itself really has something special!

 

Nature in town: Un Posto a Milano, via Cuccagna 2/4

best aperitivo in Milan

This place used to be an old Cascina, nordic Italian style farm and still has the same structure, only that it stands in the middle of a residential area of the city! Here the hard-working people from Milan gather at aperitivo time for some chit-chat en plein air. They don’t actually serve buffet for the aperitivo, but you can get great cocktails and ask a tagliere (dish of cold cuts and cheese). (If you still don’t know what a tagliere is, it is time you join us for a food tour in Milan, check it out!)

Brera district: N’ombra de vin,  Via San Marco, 2

best aperitivo in milan

In the amazing neighbourhood of Brera (one of our favourite tours destinations) you can find tons of interesting places so let your heart guide you! My heart usually brings me here: beautiful wine bottles and wide big tables that can host big groups of friends. Not to speak about the location: it is just the cripta of what used to be a Church! I love Italy when it mixes history and contemporary traditions. 

Home made Italian limoncello

Home made Italian Limoncello

italian home made limoncello

If you’ve traveled to Italy already you know how important is to offer a limoncello at the end of the dinner. You’ll get to meet some of these traditions during our food tours ! Traditional liquor from the coast of Campania region, this drink has to be served cold and you will probably be served it in a frozen small glass. However, this is not a good reason to serve it only in the summertime! Limoncello is pretty much enjoyed an all-year round in Italy! Making it at home is easy and only requires time and good organic lemons. Have you ever tried? Here is a possible recipe! Consider that in Italy we can buy 95% alcohol for liquor making. Depending on where you live, you may use any grape-based strong spirit, like vodka.

 

Ingredients:

  • 6 (preferably organic) lemons
  • 500 ml 95% alcohol (vodka will also do)
  • 700 ml of water
  • 600 gr of sugar

home made italian limoncello

First stage: lemon essence

Wash and rinse the lemons first, being careful to clean properly the surface of the lemon skin. Use a vegetable peeler to remove the peel from the lemons in long strips and then chop them into small pieces. Place the lemon peels in a bottle or a hermetic closing jar. Pour the spirit over the peels and close the bottle or the jar. Leave to rest for 3 around weeks at room temperature and in a dark place.

Second stage: the sweet pinch

At the end of the 3 weeks, you are good to add the syrup! Stir the water and sugar in a large saucepan over medium heat until the sugar melts. Cool completely before pouring It over the lemon-spirit mixture. Cover and let stand at room temperature for 7 days. Strain the limoncello through a mesh strainer to discard the peels. At this point, you can transfer the almost-ready limoncello to bottles.

Last stage: the waiting

Now what? Only time will tell! Seal the bottles keep them in a dark place for around 40 days! At the end of this time, your limoncello will be finally ready!

Store it in the freezer and serve it ghiacciato! Easy, isn’t it? Don’t shy off and be your own limoncello maker!

Home made Italian limoncello

For more questions or to speak with an Italian expert, join our tours and discover everything you need to know about Italian culture!