May 13 2013
Carnival Fest Makes Italy Peculiar
Dolce Vita Villas Ltd is delighted to present its choice selection of holiday homes, apartments and villas. They are located in the most beautiful areas of the Italian peninsula: traditional Tuscany, the secret beauty that is Umbria, the unforgettable Amalfi Coast, the islands of Sardinia and Sicily, the peninsula of Apulia, the Northern lake of Como, and, of course the world famous cities of Florence and Rome. Through our trusted and able partners, we are also able to offer our customers first class villas in France and Barbados. Finally, a brand new service for the winter months: why not let Dolce Vita Villas organise your skiing trip to the breathtaking Dolomites?
First the word itself: some think it’s Latin “carne vale” or “good-bye to meat”. There are other theories but it certainly expresses the christian concept of Lent, the seven weeks before Easter when it’s forbidden to eat meat. Carnival immediately precedes Lent and it’s a time for general jollity before the serious business of abstinence.
Easy to see how that fits in with earlier pagan ideas of the cycle of the year – a time at last to stop hoarding last year’s bounty and prepare for the coming Spring abundance – hence the link with the pleasures of the palate, I suppose.
One of those pleasures is Frappe, or Cenci if you live in Florence, or Bugie (Genova), Chiacchiere (Milan), Fiocchetti (Rimini) or Intrigoni (Reggio Emilia).Whatever you call it, here’s a recipe: Mix 350g flour, 100g granulated sugar and 1 tsp vanilla essence, make a hollow and place within 80g diced butter, 2 eggs and 2 spoons of Marsala or Grappa and the zest of a lemon. Knead well until it’s smooth and forms a ball. Wrap in cling film and allow to rest for an hour. Then roll out the dough on a floured surface into a thin film. Cut into strips with a wavy-line dough cutter and make a cut within each. Bring a large pan of corn oil to a high heat and place the strips in the pan a few at a time. When golden, drain on kitchen paper and dust with icing sugar. You can bake them in the oven for a low-fat version.
Why this is only done at Carnival time is a mystery to me – they are too good not to have them all the year round!
How about a city break and join in the Carnival? Try our latest acquisition in Florence: Campuccio Hi-tech or if you prefer Rome, take a peek at Umbria Villa Rental