Tanti Baci!

Happy Monday everyone! :)
It's been two weeks since my sister Kelly arrived back from England and I have to say I love having her back. We have had plenty of catching up days involving, mostly, lots of nattering over tea and English biscuits. It truly is amazing how much talking we have done, you'd think we didn't talk at all while she was gone let alone Skype every single day! :p But to be fair, having not been home for a year now I had to hear every detail as to how my Nanna and Grandad were doing, what's changed and what's going down in Stockport. It was very cool to hear her stories and even cooler to see what she had bought back for me. Hehe. You see my mother is the best at always managing to make me feel loved and comforted from 4000 miles away, so I was eager to see what she had snuck into Kelly's suitcase and with that being said, my Mummy knows me oh so well. My favourite items from what turned out to be a magnificent, wonderful, magical treasure chest are what I wanted to talk about today. They simply fill me with so much happiness and bring back so many lovely memories! :)
So without further ado...

Baci! :)
"Baci" means "kiss" in Italian and this little kiss has been around for 100 years. Produced by Perugina and exclusively made in Perugia Italy, Baci are little bites of chocolatey, hazelnutty, nougaty, silky, Italian goodness. (Try saying that out loud! ;p)  They have been a staple in my family since I was born and I can't remember a time I wasn't eating them. I have incredibly fond memories of sitting round the dinner table with my Nanna and Grandad and my sisters, having just eaten a scrumptious meal of pasta, pizza, salad and salami, and all delving into a bag of Baci and excitedly picking one out. It would be gone within seconds. But wrapped around every delightful, delicious kiss there is a small love note/message. The notes are written in English but we like to read the Italian. This would keep the excitement going a while longer as we shared them with each other. I have quite the collection of these lovely little notes from over the years. Growing up we would always get our Baci through our family in Italy. We would get so giddy when we knew Nanna and Grandad had received a parcel as we knew as soon as they opened it there they would be, in all their silver and blue sparkly glory. Nowadays Baci are easier to come across and you can find them in most supermarkets back home in the UK. One of the reasons I received the box above was due to the fact that my Mum and sister Jenny were beyond excited when they found them available in Sainsbury's. Here in Louisville I often buy a small box of two from World Market when I need a pick me up. For me they are a comfort and I love having them in the apartment. For my wedding I received a box from Italy and 3 months later they are all gone. After finding a Baci tree in a chocolate shop in Richmond Virginia over Christmas, the apartment was happily restocked. Whenever I am feeling down or stressed, an Italian kiss is all I need. It makes me think of my Nanna and Grandad and everything else just melts away. So if you haven't tried them before, get to it. You won't be disappointed. Also, they make adorable gifts especially to someone you love. Why not say I love you the Italian way?!! :)
For more information on Baci, check out www.perugina.com A tour of the museum is on my 'to do list'! :)

Pandoro! :)
This is like heaven in a box! No seriously, if you are ever around me or one of my family members when it's time to dig into one of these, please do not judge. We will literally stick our heads in the box just to smell the amazing, delectable, divine, aroma of this cake. Honestly, to die for. Again this is a family tradition. We would have this cake more often than not at Christmas time. My Nanna would make her homemade custard and slice the cake into layers. She would then smother the cake with custard, and marsala wine, well, more like drown it in marsala wine, and put it back together but in a star shape. She would finish it off with fresh strawberries to decorate. Now I am not kidding, this has to be my favourite thing ever. I could devour the whole cake. Thankfully my family are usually always there to have a slice or two of there own as to stop me, but really it is that good. Over the years it grew to not just being a Christmas thing, we would have it for birthdays and Easter and whenever we found it in the shops. This is another Italian treat, like Baci, that you can now find in many supermarkets, although it does remain more popular at Christmas time. However, my Nanna usually stocks up so we can eat it all year round. I love the look on her face when we ask her if we can open one and when we run around the house with sheer joy after having a slice or four. It makes her and my Grandad so happy when they see us enjoying Italy's finest. My Grandad is so proud of where he comes from and likes to tell us every time we pop round that Italy makes the best food in the world. I would 100% whole heartedly have to agree with him. I can not tell you how happy I was when Kelly gave this to me. Granted I know I can just take a trip to World Market and pick one up but this one is special as I know Nanna saved it just for me and I can hear her telling Kelly that I must have one for Good Luck. My sisters and I adore Pandoro and like to eat it plain or toasted and covered in Nutella.
Ok, so while these weren't in Kelly's wonderful treasure chest I can't talk all things Italian and not mention them. These are a must have/try! :)

Nutella...enough said! :p

Rossana! :) These candies are one of my all time favourites. I actually haven't had them in a few years as I have never seen them available in the UK or over here, I usually get them from Italy. They are a hard candy with a creamy hazelnut center and I just love them. They bring back so many memories of being at Nanna and Grandads that I just smile from ear to ear when I see them. Italy's favourite candy and one of mine too! :)

These I have mentioned before. In fact I did a whole blog about them. Check out 'A taste of home' I can't give you the exact location of where you can get these or find them as Grandad has always bought them back from Italy. All I do know is that if you ever go to Praiano or Sorrento you must visit every bakery until you come across them. Once you find them, buy them, buy them all. They are amazing and you just won't be able to stop at one. I like to have them with a cup of tea or coffee. :)
I do hope you are able to try these treats and that you enjoy them just as much as me but if you have any favourite treats, Italian or otherwise, I would love to hear about them in the comments below! :)
Have a wonderful day!
Tanti Baci
Love lulu xx

3 comments :

  1. This blog made me smile big...nothing beats all of our Italian treats and what we've grown up with!! Yum!!! :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I couldn't agree more! :) <3

    ReplyDelete
  3. Nice Inspirations

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