Entries by Lesley Smith

Food Photography & Styling

So I needed to take a new photo of the Crostini with Sausage and Cheese for the web site and with my current mission to improve my food photography I set about styling the food and playing with light. I found a board that I liked, prepared the food and set up on my terrace […]

Stuffed Zucchini

So my third recipe in the zucchini series is Stuffed Zucchini. This was super tasty. I used fresh Italian sausage, chopped zucchini, plus salt and pepper to season. Mix everything together and fry in extra virgin olive oil for a few minutes (I added a little water to keep everything soft). With the zucchini slice […]

Local Butcher

I live here in Tuscany and have been here for fourteen years. It’s a stones throw from Montalcino but my nearest hub is actually a place nobody has ever heard of, called Buonconvento. Population of approx. 3000. Sits on the Via Cassia, the old main road between Siena and Rome. One of my favourite features […]

Crostini with Mushrooms

Have found a fantastic food blog/photography website written by an Australian girl – www.two-loves.com. Beautiful photos and lots of amazing advice. Used some basic advice on props (interesting) and background (minimal) and did a couple of photos that I really love for today’s recipe…. Crostini with Funghi (Mushrooms). Super easy this one – chop a […]


One of the many things I love about my job are the people I meet. I’m living in what lots of guests say is everyone’s “Dream” i.e. under the Tuscan Sun! And I’d be the first to say that it’s a beautiful place to have landed and stayed in. However I am in the middle […]

Cutting Boards – Wood v Plastic

I get a lot of comments regarding the fact that I have wooden rather than plastic chopping boards and thus the issue of hygiene and bacteria so I’ve started doing a bit of research on the matter. I’ve gathered together snippets from various places to form my argument Pro Wood! It would seem that wooden […]

So much Zucchine .. what to do?!

It’s that time of year again when the zucchini seem to appear from nowhere overnight and this year I’ve decided to do as many different recipes as I can find – let’s see what the results are over the next few weeks. I started yesterday with Zuchine Sott’Olio – a classic Italian way to preserve […]

What’s new for 2015

We’ve been adding new recipes and menus every year and now have a pretty big selection. We’ve been told many times that having such a big choice and being very flexible with the menus is what makes our classes so attractive. For us it’s fun to do something different each time so we’re more than […]

September … sunshine and jam making!

After a wet and slow summer September is looking to be sunny and busy which is all good. Time to use the late season tomatoes to make jam and “passata” and to use the last of the basil to make portions of pesto to conserve for later in the year. My first attempts at conserving […]