Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Tuscan Cuisine

Each region in Italy has its own unique cuisine, and Tuscany is a good starting point for exploring the best in Italian food. Tuscan cuisine is appreciated world-round for its fine natural and favorful ingredients. A look at the Tuscan countryside reveals some of the key ingredients in local cooking: olive groves with their silvery sheen, fairytale forests of chestnut trees, hillsides blanketed in grape vines, angelic sheep lolling among ruins, fragrant rosemary and sage bushes lining gardens. Tuscan cooking is simple and seasonal, without the heavy sauces found in other regions.

Traditionally, meals in Italy usually contain 3 or 4 courses. Meals are seen as a time to spend with family and friends, thus daily meals can be longer than in other cultures. Lunch, or Pranzo, is considered the most important meal of the day. During lunch hours (typically 12 noon to 2:00) schoolchildren are allowed to go home and most shops close for a pausa, which is characteristic of that easygoing Italian way of life that visitors find so alluring and desirable.

What better way to learn more about traditional Tuscan cuisine, then to take a cooking class at an historical Tuscan Villa, located in the heart of Chianti. Together with the Villa Casagrande’s Chef Paola Eoncini, you will prepare typical Tuscan dishes and other specialties as well as decadent sweets and Tuscan cakes. Learn more by visiting Celtic Tours website.

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