Archives for May 2016

A merry Mayday dance around Watermill bamboo

Blog bamboo2Our friend Paul Fowler, who lives in a farm in the hills near us, is always helping out with exciting projects for the children of the area. And he often has calls on our bamboo for the children to build things in these projects (like a working trebuchet at a recent festa).

Those of you who have been to the Watermill will know that, thanks to the bamboozery (you have shrubs in a shrubbery, so bamboo in a bamboozery), we are ‘long’ on bamboo and always happy to help. The last ‘Mayday’ call from Paul was just before… Mayday!

Paul wanted the kids to make – and dance round – a traditional English maypole. So some more of our bamboo was called for. You can see the end result above – and here’s a picture of the happy Mayday dance.Blog bamboo 1

A real pleasure to help, Paul — and a happy Rites of Spring to everyone!

When in Rome… When to eat your green salad in Italy

A Watermill salad with nasturtium flowers from the garden.

A Watermill salad with nasturtium flowers from the garden.

Our friend and Florence Add-on tour guide Freya Middleton knows just about all there is to know about Italian life – and here’s a tip from her on how to be a true Italian (unless you are in Rome!).

Pic of Freya MiddletonFreya says: In what is a fairly steadfast rule, leafy salads are eaten last in Italy – not as a side dish or starter.

“Salads are almost exclusively dressed with olive oil and vinegar and their position in last place is because they are thought to cleanse the palate and aid digestion.

“One of the few exceptions is a crispy Roman salad of puntarelle, [a sort of chicory] dressed in anchovies and olive oil which is usually served as a starter.”

puntarelle all romana: eat me first!

Puntarelle alla romana: eat me first!

At the Watermill we also serve our own fabulous version of a classic Tuscan salad, called panzanella.panzanellaWe serve it buffet style and I reckon is tastes good together with the other delicious dishes in the lunch table, including fennel cooked in wine white and cream; bresaola with parmesan shavings and rucola. and that salad with nasturtium flowers above

But we are very relaxed: eat your salad whenever you like!

Dinner at the watermill..Great tastes, good company.

Dinner at the watermill. Great tastes, good company.

Come and join us for one of our delicious week-long creative courses — painting, knitting, yoga, Italian language– more details about everything by clicking hereBuon appetito!


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