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Sun dried Tomatoes

Tomato Passata sauce, part 1

Tomato Passata sauce, part 2

An empty beach, two hungry day trippers and a dog in shock!!

Octopus risotto

After spending three weekends locked inside the house,  trying to keep warm and stay dry , a certain amount of cabin fever was setting in . Then Saturday morning we woke up to  SUN. It ‘s amazing how the sun affects my mood and energy , so we  decided to make a trip to the beach!


Not too far from Allerona (  an hour and a half drive) is Monte Argentario, a beautiful peninsula on the Tuscan coast .  Argentario is a promontory stretching towards the Tyrrhenian Sea  .  An island in the past, changing sea currents eventually joined it to the mainland through two stretches of beach.  These two stunning beaches,  Giannela and Feniglia are kilometers long with beautiful white sand…… so, an amazing place to have a walk on a sunny day in December!    


This stunning peninsula  is completely over run by Roman and Tuscan sun worshippers during the month of August. So , if you plan to go there for a holiday . … I recommend  the months of June or September, or a sunny day in the middle of December , of course. 


Clearly, our faithful dog Lui , joined  us on the trip. It was the first time for  him to see the sea, and having been a hunting dog throughout his life ( until he arrived un announced at our house and never left ), seeing all that water was a big shock …. A huge bowl of water that was too tempting not to try and drink.
After walking for hours on the empty beach, me and nick  started to feel quit  hungry and poor LUI was very thirsty.  So, it was time to head back to the green hills of Umbria.     


But before that,  we stopped at a fish stand . You can’t call it a nice trip if you don’t came back home with a treat, am I right? . With a fresh octopus in the car, a dog still in shock and us super hungry, I began to plan our dinner. Using sun dried tomatoes, black olives, one anchovy and the fresh octopus …. I made a true Mediterranean risotto …as a way to bring in our house the flavor of the sea.

Serves 4
350 grams of fresh octopus
4 handfuls of rice Carnaroli
2 cups homemade fish stock
6 pitted black olives, finely chopped
6 sun-dried tomatoes, finely chopped
1 anchovy , finely chopped
2 clove garlic
 white wine
EVO oil
Black pepper
A handful of chopped parsley
 How it works:
Clean and cut the octopus into small pieces. In a pan heat EVO oil  with a clove of garlic. When almost golden add anchovies, olives and dried tomatoes. Cook for a minute and add wine. Cook for another few minutes, remove the garlic clove and add the octopus. Cook on low heat for 15 minutes.

In a saucepan, heat 1 tbsp olive oil  add the clove of garlic, remove when almost golden. Add the rice, and allow it to toast, stirring, for one or 2 minutes. Pour the wine, raise the heat, and let the wine evaporate. Keep your fish stock warm, ladle one cup into the rice, and stir. Add the octopus sauce, stir well, and keep on adding a little stock at a time, stirring continuously until the rice is tenderly cooked, this should take about 15 minutes. Finally, take the risotto off the heat, add another tablespoon olive oil, and stir well until you get a rather creamy consistency. Add  pepper and part of parsley, and let it rest for a couple of minutes before serving.

2 comments to An empty beach, two hungry day trippers and a dog in shock!!

  • ketty

    non c’è che dire lui è veramente fotogenico i paesaggi sono bellissimi martedi proverò il risotto che mi sembra molto invitante, chiaramente ti farò sapere, brava.

  • Kim M

    Have only ever been to Rome and Florence. These pictures have me longing to visit Italy again, this time in your neck of the woods. And taking some cooking classes while there would be wonderful too!! Perhaps the coming year will bring a chance to go there again!! Keep up the awesome pics and wonderful cooking. Will help tide me over till the visit can happen!!


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