Curious Appetite

Tuscany

Favorite Bakeries & Baked Goods in Florence

 

Looking for the most buttery bakeries in Florence?

Buttery may not be the accurate term since many Tuscan baked goods are made with either no butter (i.e. pane toscano, cantuccini biscotti, etc) with olive oil, shortening or plain old fashioned lard (strutto) or a combo of one of these with butter, or modest amounts of butter compared to the French.

But for all intents and purposes, these are the bakeries where you can get the holy trinity of fat carbs and sugar. Italians and Tuscans especially take great pride in baked goods, especially breads which have hundreds of years attached in every crumble and every morsel of that “buttery” simple carbohydrate bite. The French get a lot of credit for patisserie (and rightly so) but what some famously ignore is that they have the eclair thanks to the Renaissance’s original carb loader Caterina de’ Medici and her team of bakers, who introduced the pâte à choux (or bigne’) to these forkless savages (which she also forking corrected). Florence is kind of a big deal.

As a result, it is possible to find yourself in a conundrum of where to find the best baked goods in Florence. Albeit the tiny size. this city is brimming with pastry shops (la pasticceria) bakery shops (il forno) at every corner luring you in with wafts of buttery sweet and savory temptations. Save yourself the hassle with this little guide. Or you can also take a food tour in Florence to taste an array in real life with a professional carb loader. Continue Reading

Visiting Centro Pecci and Where to Eat in Prato

Tuscany is surprising me a lot recently, the moment I declare “this region is stuck in the past”, I soon after eat my words. Most recent consumption of minced words was at the re-opening of Luigi Pecci Centre for Contemporary Art aka Centro Pecci in Prato. The Pecci has been around for quite some time, since 1988 to be exact and has been a unique hub for collecting contemporary art.

Local English-language newspaper The Florentine covered the opening best. As quoted from a recent feature: “The Pecci was the first institution in Italy to be built from scratch with the specific intent to exhibit, collect, preserve, document and distribute research on contemporary art.”

This October, they unveiled their completed architectural spaceship-like renovation 10 years in the making and 14.4 million euros later. Thanks to the buzz in the local media surrounding Centro Pecci’s re-opening, I’m sure Prato will be getting a little more visitors. Continue Reading

Bring Florence home with Florentine (the cookbook)

You need this book. Publisher: Hardie Grant

If you love Florence, chances are you also love the food. I mean, I can’t think of better moments than devouring something delicious like a truffle panini at Procacci with a glass of prosecco along tragically fashionable Via Tornabuoni or sitting elbow to elbow at a bustling trattoria, wolfing down ribollita, bistecca and chianti immersed in old world soul. This city, with all its imperfections, really leaves an impression on every single person who visits. And if it doesn’t, that person isn’t awake to little joys of life. You live here (like me) because you love the lifestyle. Part of that romanticism comes from the food. Continue Reading

10 reasons to visit Florence (for more than 3 days)

Foodie on a vespa with a killer view

Forgive my obvious bias, to this tiny gem of a city. However, it’s pretty common for the average traveler to visit Florence for only 3 days. I did a quick investigation on google search terms for Florence, and one of the most common queries is “what to do in Florence in 3 days.” I understand, there is a big world to see and only so many vacation days to do it.

But have you considered giving Florence more than just 3 shakes and 3 wishes? Continue Reading

How to use truffles in the kitchen

truffles. lots of truffles.

Besides just going at it and stuffing your face with these aromatic, umami nuggets of gold- I have a couple ideas for how to use truffles in the kitchen.

Last weekend, I headed over to the truffle festival in San Miniato with Girl in Florence, her hubby-to-be and met up with one of our foodie idols, Emiko Davies. Wow, that’s a lot of name dropping but I must give cred since Emiko and her sommelier master hubby (sounds like a team!) organized a rather decadent day for us and it wouldn’t have been possible without either of them for the truffle-y goods I got my paws on. Continue Reading

1 2 3 4