The sweet life. The accurate description of most of my holidays. After all, why do we book these getaways if not to soothe our souls and minds? There are ways I know I feel my most happy on a trip and for ease (cause you definitely wanted to know) I’ve listed them for you below:
We were fortunate enough to take part in a cooking class with Alessio from Osteria D’Alberto restaurant. Whilst these classes can sometimes feel a little of a tourist gimic, this felt far from it. Alessio was personable and caring, with a passion for his work. We started our evening with a glass of prosecco and a taste for the lake fish before beginning to make our own Gnocchi, followed by Risotto and Tiramisu. Whilst I’ve done a cooking class before, this felt much different. Each person was able to hop in and try different methods when and if they pleased. Alessio gave us a history lesson of the region and told us the best spots for wine and cheese. By the end of the evening it felt as though he was our very own personal guide!
If you’d like to make your own gnocchi here is the easy to follow recipe:
- 2 medium potatoes, about 425g in total
- 250g (9 oz) plain flour
- 1 egg
- Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Peel potatoes and add to the pan. Cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes. Drain, cool and mash with a fork or potato masher.
- Measure 250g of mashed potato. Reserve any excess mashed potato for another use. Combine the 250g mashed potato, flour and egg in a large bowl. Knead until dough forms a ball. Cut the dough into four portions and shape into long “snakes”, about 1.5cm (1/2 in) in diameter. Cut snakes into 1.5cm (1/2 in) pieces.
- Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Drop in gnocchi and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until gnocchi have risen to the top. Drain and serve with your favourite sauce.
(I found this recipe on allrecipes.co.uk but it is almost identical to the one we followed).
A holiday to me requires exploration. I love to open my mind and discover new places. It’s the quirky spots and bustling streets that make me go ‘aaaaah’. Cannobio was this type of place. It hosts a market each Sunday that shows how busy this quiet location can get. With miles of shops, all of the locals gather to get their clothing, accessories, food, drink, art, home items (you name it!) It also has some wonderful piazzas and some fantastic views of the lakes. You can sit and watch wind surfers and yachts as you sip on your spritz. Ah the bliss!
For any stay in any part of Italy, it would be crazy not to indulge a little in the local delicacies. With each region, there are offers of characteristic wine, fragrant cheeses and wonderfully cured meets. I actually tried pickled carrots and cauliflower for the first time in Maccagno and it was delicious. Not something I’d ever think to do! Although Italy is famous for its pizza and pasta, you’ll find excellent fish and rich meat recipes in the area of the lakes. It’s well worth asking the restaurant to recommend something for you to taste.
I love the water. There’s something so cooling and calming about it to the soul. If I have opportunity to take an hour or two to stop by the pool, lake or sea I want to. Even better if I can hop into the water for a paddle. As the Lakes are clean water, it is one of the most relaxing ways to unwind after a day of exploring. If you have a couple of blisters (It happens to the best of us) then take the opportunity to soak your feet in the cooling lake water.
Nothing beats a little ‘perk me up’ photoshoot. Even if you’re less comfortable in front of the camera, it can be super fun to grab your camera out and snap all of the sights you see! I love to put on my best lippy, work my environment and capture how happy I felt at the time. It can be hella fun, and it’s all smiles all round!
What ways do you like to get the most of your holiday?
Twitter | Instagram
*This post was written in collaboration with Bookings for You. Although my trip was covered by them, my words, opinions and love for Italy are my own!