Author Archives: Rowena

About Rowena

Hobbyist gardener, enthusiast in cooking different cuisines, smitten with dogs of all shapes and sizes, and travels occasionally when the mood hits.

A-Tisket, A-Tasket

…a tansy in my basket.

Tanaceto (common tansy)

Tanaceto per frittata is what the description read when I spotted this among the herbs at the garden nursery, and as I didn’t know what tanaceto was at the time of purchase, I didn’t think 2.50€ would be a huge loss if it turned out to be an edible weed.

Good grief, was I close.

Tansy, as it turns out, can become invasive. I couldn’t find anything on the use of tanaceto/tansy in Italian cuisine but with a history that goes way back, and also as a known companion plant to roses and berries, it has a home here if it can survive our winters.


It’s ice cream/gelato season!

Date ice cream in kataifi cone
Date ice cream in a homemade kataifi cone, recipe by Hoda Kobeissi. Grab the recipe:

Whew! I can breathe a sigh of relief now that necessary garden renovations are nearly done, but as one task is completed, another swoops right in to take its place! Making ice cream is a task, you ask? Well not really if you have a machine to do the work. I’ve got something else in mind though, because after seeing kataifi cones being made on MasterChef Australia, I knew immediately that they were my kind of ‘thing’.

I had no idea that shredded phyllo dough also went by the name of kataifi, or that you can also make a rustic version of it at home. The pastry strands require a steady hand to pipe a thin line of batter in a concentric circle. It also demands patience because as you can well imagine, the mixture goes a loooooong way since so little of it is used at a time.

The strands of cooked dough are then wrapped around a metal cone and fried until crisp. If I can get my better half to hold the camera, I’ll definitely share the process in an upcoming post.

Happy Donut Day!

Happy Donut Day!

We get commercially-made donuts (ciambelle at the supermarket) as donut shops/culture aren’t an Italian thing. However, I strongly suspect that someone got the memo that today is donut day in the english-speaking world and made sure to stock up the display. My, oh my, these were perfect and not stale from sitting in the case for days. 🍩 🍩 🍩