Thursday, August 30, 2007


It has been an adventurous year, filled with many new experiences, choices and absolutely no blogging. Thank you to everyone who has continued to write to me even though I have been blog silent for way too long. Some people get blog burnout, but I cannot say that that is my case. And, I am afraid to say I have no proper excuse. But if it will grant me any sort of pardon, I do know when it all started: when my ADSL line went down and I never made peace with the telephone company! Soon a new line and twist will need to be added to the KISHKO header as I am off to try my luck on the other side of the ocean, 16 years after I touched down in pastaland.........Ciao a e presto!

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Sunday, September 24, 2006


once upon a time, a very long time ago in florence, when you needed to do a shop up for wine, you would venture over to one of these tiny little doors found in various locations throughout the city. the vendors on the other side would fill up your bottles and then you would be on your merry way! this one is located in via del giglio in florence and was called very matter- of-factly, vendita di vino or wine for sale. and that's pretty much all i know about them! i will have to head over to my favorite wine shop soon and ask my wine guy to give me a quick history lesson, over a glass of wine of course!

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Sunday, September 17, 2006


if you like a proper bloody mary and enjoy devouring oysters, this little number is for you! this summer i worked in an exceptional fish restaurant and was shucking an average of 10 kilos of oysters from brittany each night. clients who had never tried an oyster shot before would usually scrunch up their noses and cringe when i would describe how an oyster shot was prepared and enjoyed. however, once they tried one, they inevitably kept coming back for more. so at the end of my oyster shucking experience i concluded that oyster shots can be one of the most addictive drugs on the market!


one chilled shot glass

a splash of fresh tomato juice
a few drops of fresh squeezed lemon juice
a pinch of salt
a dash of tabasco

one freshly shucked oyster

a top up of ice cold vodka
a grind of the pepper mill

toss the shot back and simultaneously chew the oyster as you swallow and enjoy the layers of tomato, lemon and vodka as they slide over your palate

a napkin to wipe up the drizzle dripping down your lower cheek

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Tuesday, August 08, 2006


the internet connection at home has disappeared and i have no idea when it will be back. our friends over at the phone company didn't tell us that when we increased the velocity of our line we would be WITHOUT a line for 1 to 3 weeks! in italian, that means at LEAST 3 weeks. so i don't know when i will be back and blogging. but the good news is that i am collecting lots of pictures and ideas! so please bare with me........

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Monday, July 24, 2006


lately there is a lot of talk about the heat and about thirst quenching salvations, i.e. pimm’s, rose’ and iced latte’s. we don’t really have a strict summer drink rule in our house. it just has to be cold, refreshing and have some sort of alcohol in it! however there is usually a dominating theme to our summer drinks. last year it was pimm’s and, i have to admit that, vodka tonic is a year round staple. the theme this year is the venetian spritz. traditionally spritz is an austrian cocktail. when the austrian’s occupied venice, they introduced this cocktail to venetians which has become something you can get anywhere and everywhere in venice. in fact, venetians aren’t big on cocktails, and generally won’t serve up anything other than a glass of wine or a spritz! the base of a true spritz is red or still white wine and seltzer water. the venetians stick to the white wine and add a choice of aperol, bitter campari, select or cynar. in some areas of the veneto they skip the seltzer water and still wine all together and simply use prosecco - a sparkling white wine. and that’s how we serve ours up, with the addition of ice and a green olive. you can also add a slice of lemon, lime or orange. we use lemon and lime, mostly because we always have them both in the house. this spritz goes down like water, so beware: you just might find yourself wobbling home! but in venice that isn’t a problem. since they don’t have cars, they walk home! i suggest you do the same........

basic spritz recipe:
1/3 bitter of your choice (aperol, bitter campar, select or cynar)
2/3 parts prosecco.
plenty of ice
a slice of citrus of your choice
an olive on a long bamboo skewer


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Monday, July 17, 2006


everytime someone leaves a comment on a post i am thrilled, i really am. it makes me so pleased that someone actually enjoyed the post enough to leave a comment for me! so, a few weeks ago when i was approached by a journalist who wanted to interview me for one of her articles, you can imagine my joy! only problem is, i am not japanese. let me explain. the name kishko threw her off. she was profiling the japanese experience in italy and assumed, as many do, that my name was japanese. so i thought maybe i should do some explaining, hence the added details to my “profile” and this post. kishko is a nickname that derives from a combination of my first and last names. this is not the first time i have been mistaken for a japanese woman. actually, i have also been mistaken for a japanese male! when i ran an academic exchange program all of my correspondence with professors and students was via email, so there was no voice to match to my mysterious androgynous name. when the students and professors would show up for the beginning of the academic year they would come to my office and ask for me, not believing that i was me! most people thought they would find a japanese male in my office. i do apologize for any disapppointments i have caused! but i do hope you will still continue reading and leaving comments!

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Sunday, July 16, 2006


only a fool would turn their oven on in this weather.
i would be that fool.
i had to make a dessert. it had to be quick and easy but seem like i had labored over it! the easiest one i know is an apple tart i make that is the combination of about 5 different recipes. the method: slice, stir, bake and serve. it couldn’t get much easier than that, no? this time i also added an almendra para helado - almond sugar designed to be used for ice cream - i bought in mallorca, spain. it is 50% sugar and 50% ground almonds so it was a perfect addition to my creation. when the tart is still warm, i serve it up with fresh whipped cream that i spike with cointreau and cinnamon. it is also tasty with ice cream. and then there are those who choose to eat this tart with both ice ream and whipped cream! i’m not lying.

For the recipe, click on the Read more link below.

3 apples, sliced papert thin
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
2 T butter
3 T cointreau
1/4 cup sugar
puff pastry - enough to cover the baking dish you are using, rolled out to 2mm thickness

peel, core and slice the apples paper thin and put into mixing bowl. add lemon juice, nutmeg, cointreau, sugar, 1 tablespon of the butter broken into small pieces and mix well. Sprinkle the remaining butter on the bottom of baking dish and cover evenly with apple mixture. cover with puff pastry and bake at 180 degrees celcius for 30 minutes. remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes then flip over onto serving dish. serve immediately (you can wait to serve but the puff pastry absorbs all of the liquid from the apples and does not mantain a crunchy texture).

optional: i covered the bottom of the baking dish with a light coating of the almendra para helado that i had. and i added cinnamon to the whipped cream

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