We all have weaknesses. One of mine is that I tend to be quite impatient. That’s why, even though I adore homemade bread, I’m not going to babysit that dough for several hours!
Enter this week’s guest, Silvia Colloca, my go-to expert (the other one is Vittorio of Viva la Focaccia) when it comes to bread making, including tips on cutting corners and reducing the waiting time.
Silvia is hands-down one of the best Italian food bloggers out there: on Silvia’s Cucina, she shares lots of tasty, easy, healthy Italian recipes that she learned growing up in Milan from her mom and grandma. Just FYI, Silvia is also a successful movie and theater actress and mezzo soprano opera singer, trained at the prestigious music academy of Milan. For the past ten years, she has been married to one of the most beloved Australian actors, producers (and heart-throbs), Richard Roxburgh, and living in Sydney, where they raise their adorable sons. Silvia manages to do all of the above with grace and ease, and to look drop-dead gorgeous even when covered in flour.
Which, in theory, makes her one of those super-women we’d all like to hate: however, she also happens to be incredibly nice, modest, and laid-back, so you stand no chance: you are going to fall in love with her, and her delicious, authentic Italian food.
I was overjoyed when my friend Alessandra asked me if I could write a guest post on her blog DinnerInVenice. Alessandra and I both started our Italian food blogs back in 2011. Like Ale, I am an Italian-born woman, recently emigrated to an English speaking country (Australia) and, just like her, I have been fascinated and enamoured with the bounty of local produce and diverse cuisines my new home-land has to offer. However, I could not help but miss my Bella Italia, the very scents of it, its flavors. My most unsatisfied carving was “real” bread, Il pane. Fragrant, crunchy and bronzed, with its inviting crackly crust and a moist and airy crumb.
I have learnt to make it at home, from slow-proving sourdoughs to yeast-risen ones, for more immediate gratification. And every time a loaf is baking in my oven, I can simply close my eyes and smell my beloved Italy from my sunny Sydney kitchen.