Luxury Culinary Holidays


Braised Rabbit

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

We use rabbit in our Kitchen and Puglia Adventures holiday, to practise jointing and de-boning. We have a friend who breeds them sustainably and they are available all year around, unlike free-range chickens which follow the seasons here. I think that they are also more delicious, and of course don't need plucking!


  • 1 rabbit (gutted, skinned and jointed)
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 onion
  • 1 stick of celery
  • 1 leek
  • 250 g of mushrooms
  • Mixed herbs to include thyme/parsley/tarragon and bay
  • 1 dessert spoon of tomato puree
  • 1 glass of red wine
  • 1 tablespoon of oil
  • 2 pints of chicken or game stock
  • 1 dessert spoon of corn flour
  • Salt and pepper

Heat a frying pan and… view more »

Joe's Fish Stew

Saturday, October 19th, 2013

Joe Hunt, who teaches at our Kitchen Skills week, made this wonderful fish soup the last time he was here in Puglia. So full of flavour and goodness, adapt the recipe for what fish you have available.

Serves 2


• 100g fresh mussels
• 4 clams
• 2 gurnard fillets
• 1 large or 2 small white fish fillets such as hake or coley
• ½ squid tube, cleaned
• 300ml fish stock & 100ml white wine mixed together
• Prawn shells or fish heads for extra flavour if you like.
• ½ tin peeled plum tomatoes
• 6 cherry tomatoes
• 1 small onion or ½ large onion
• 3 cloves garlic
• ½ bulb fresh fennel
• ½ stick celery
• pinch of saffron
• olive oil for frying
• pinch dried chilli flakes
• 1 bay leaf
• 2 tsp. tomato puree
• pinch of caster sugar
• chopped flat leaf parsley to garnish


1. Finely chop… view more »

Cacioricotta cheese

Monday, October 14th, 2013

Cacioricotta cheese is a simple cheese that is traditional in Puglia, that can be eaten fresh or aged for better keeping and a stronger flavour. I've scaled the quantities back to make enough for one cheese, but sometimes cheese making is easier in larger quantities, so scale it back up and make one for now and one for later. You can use cow, goat or sheep's milk, raw or pasteurised but not UHT.

Bring 2 litres of fresh milk to the boil, then leave to cool to blood temperature. Add a tablespoon of liquid rennet, stir thoroughly and leave for about an hour.
When solids have formed, stir up and heat it again until the pan is hot to… view more »

Pumpkin, Apple and Chilli Soup

Saturday, April 27th, 2013

The sweetness of the apple and the heat from the chilli really work well together to lift this pumpkin soup into something special.

Serves 4

2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 or 2 chillis (preferably fresh, but dried would be fine too)
600g pumpkin flesh, cubed
1 apple, peeled, cored and diced
1 litre vegetable stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat the oil in a large saucepan, add the onion and cook gently for 5 minutes until softened. Stir in the finely sliced chilli and cook gently over a low heat for 3-4 minutes.

Add the pumpkin and stir to coat with the onion mixture. Stir in the apple. Pour in the stock and bring to the boil. Then reduce the heat, cover and simmer for… view more »

Orange (and Chocolate) Cake

Saturday, April 27th, 2013

• 2 oranges, diced (including skins), pips removed
• 115g/4oz olive oil, plus extra for greasing
• 115g/4oz sugar
• 2 medium free-range eggs, beaten
• 3 tsp baking powder
• 175g/6oz flour or semolina
• Optional - 60g dark chocolate
• Optional - 50g bran

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4. Grease a deep 20cm/8in tin with oil.
Purée the diced oranges in a food processor.

Whisk the oil and sugar in a bowl until it turns pale. Mix in the eggs one at a time, then add the baking powder and flour or semolina and bran if using. Stir to combine, then fold the orange pulp through the mixture.

If using, cut the chocolate into small chunks then stir through the cake mixture.

Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, and put in the oven. After the… view more »

Mushroom and Chestnut risotto

Tuesday, April 9th, 2013

I love making risotto, when most of the work is done you just have to stand there and push it around a bit (I don't sign up to the continuous stirring), so it's very easy to keep a glass of wine in your other hand.

Serves four
250g fresh mushrooms (the more interesting the better)
100g chestnuts, peeled and roughly chopped in big pieces
40g dried porcini
400g risotto rice (arborio is good, but there are others)
one glass of vermouth or white wine (plus extra for you)
50g butter
grated parmesan
good extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
fresh parsley to serve

First, make your stock. Simply simmer the dried porcini in a litre and a half of water for 20 minutes.
In the meantime prepare the fresh… view more »


Monday, January 14th, 2013

Taralli are small, doughnut shaped biscuits that are ubiquitously served alongside your aperitivo in Puglia. They are plain, almost pastry like, and sometimes flavoured with chilli, fennel seed or black pepper. And strangely addictive. Available in every bar, bakery and supermarket, why would you bother to make your own? Because we can. And so that you can enjoy them when you're not in Puglia.


500g flour
2 teaspoons of salt
150ml olive oil
200ml white wine
optional: 2 tablespoons of fennel seeds, chilli flakes or black pepper
essential: somebody who's company you enjoy, to share the work.

Makes… view more »

Additional Resources




Preserved Aubergines ~ Melanzane Sott'olio

Wednesday, August 29th, 2012

This is the recipe that we learned from talking to a family as they preserved 200kg of aubergine for their restaurant. You can read the story on our blog page. Scale the recipe down to suit your needs!

First, peel the aubergines. (In their case, 200kg.)
Then slice all of the aubergines lengthways into 3mm slices - best to use a mandolin. Especially if you're working 200kg...
Layer the aubergines in large jars with coarse salt, slices of garlic and fresh mint leaves. When you get to the top of the jar squeeze as much of the aubergine liquid out as possible.
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I first me Chef Joe at Tideswell School of Food where he was teaching and I attended a fillet-a-fish course. We made this dish (my fillets were less than perfect, but still grilled nicely) so I felt I had to include the recipe here!

Ingredients (per person)
1 mackerel
8 new potatoes, boiled and kept warm
3 cherry tomatoes, quartered
1 teaspoon capers, soaked
salt and pepper

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon wholegrain mustard
half a clove of garlic
1 teaspoon finely chopped chives

  • Carefully fillet the mackerel.
  • Place the fillets on a lightly oiled tray, skin side up and drizzle with a little oil and season. Place under a very hot grill until the skin is lightly blackened in places and blistering. The flesh will
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