Fresh From Nancy's Garden

A Fun Place For Gardening Tips and Great Recipes

Everything Italian

Franco’s Linguine with Clams

Here’s another favorite of mine from Tuscookany–Franco’s linguine with clams.  This is super easy to make and is ready in no time. I cheated this time and bought fresh pasta at the market…if you’re going to cheat, at least cheat with good fresh pasta. INGREDIENTS LINGUINE WITH CLAMS 1 kg / 2 lb fresh clams 2 cloves garlic, chopped 200 g / 7 oz cherry tomatoes 1/2 tsp chili powder 500 […]

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Home-Made Pasta with Franco’s Tuscan Ragout (Bolognese)

A new Christmas tradition! If you can’t be in Italy, you can cook like you’re in Italy. This year Jake and I went back to Tuscookany and spent a wonderful week with Franco and Paola cooking all of my favorite Italian dishes.  This Tuscan Ragout is so easy to make…and tastes so much better with home-made pasta. Making fresh pasta is a bit time consuming but after one bite, you’ll never […]

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Franco’s Bolognese–Perfect Comfort Food for a Rainy Weekend!

Just looking at this photo makes me hungry for Franco’s Bolognese, or as he calls it, Tuscan Ragout. Anyone who knows me knows how much I love going to Tuscookany , a villa tucked away in the hills outside of Arezzo to spend a week cooking with Franco and Paola. And the field trips we take to Ravagni, a family owned olive oil producer since 1421 and Villa La Ripa, a local […]

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Tuscan Bean Soup–Really Good and Ready In No-Time!

I love making soup, especially at this time of year. You can keep this Tuscan Bean Soup on the stove and if friends drop by treat them to a bowl bursting with flavor but low in calories, which is very welcome during the holidays! I made a huge batch but you can cut the recipe in half if you need to make less.  INGREDIENTS FOR TUSCAN BEAN SOUP 3 garlic, […]

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"Book Club" Ribollita

It was my turn to host book club last month and I planned to make one of my crowd favorites–Greek salad and chicken kabobs, but an unplanned menu item–Ribollita* soup– turned out to be the surprise hit of the evening. The night before our book club meeting I cooked a big batch of Ribollita, with plans to freeze it. I just happened to post this photo on Facebook and Instagram and one of […]

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The Best Heirloom Tomato, Grilled Peach and Burrata Crostini With Franco’s Balsamic

Here’s the perfect dish to celebrate the 4th of July, Bastille Day or Summer–an heirloom tomato, grilled peach and burrata crostini with Franco’s balsamic on a bed of home-grown arugula. I think this is one of the prettiest appetizers you can make and according to my co-workers, the best one I’ve ever shared in the office. (That made me feel good!) Not to mention, it’s really simple to make. INGREDIENTS […]

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Channeling Cucina Enoteca with Burrata and Roasted Garlic Crostini

One of my favorite appetizers at Cucina Enoteca is their Burrata and Roasted Garlic Crostini. The presentation alone is beautiful with the burrata sitting in a cool, lidded jar* and the roasted garlic just waiting to be spread on the crostini.  This is an easy appetizer to make when you need to bring a dish to a holiday party. And I promise, you’ll get rave reviews!  INGREDIENTS FOR BURRATA AND ROASTED GARLIC CROSTINI […]

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Franco’s Chicken Cacciatore — So Easy…So Good

I’ve been home from Italy for two months and I’m still craving all the great meals Franco taught us how to make at Tuscookany.  This is a photo I took in Italy of his super easy-to-make chicken cacciatore. I was hoping mine would turn out as good–it did! Although I cheated a bit. Franco had us start with whole chickens–complete with a few feathers that we had to torch off, but I had […]

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Cheers To Summer! Celebrate with a Raspberry Basil (Franco) Limoncello Cocktail.

Summer deserves to be celebrated and I have the perfect cocktail for the occasion–a Raspberry Basil (Franco) Limoncello. I’ll explain how Franco fits into this recipe in a minute. And yes, it really does tastes as good as it looks and sounds. Not to mention it’s super simple to make.  I made this Limoncello with our chef, Franco, last fall at Tuscookany and I’ve been saving it for a special occasion and […]

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