Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Florence and More Plus Summer Chicken Salad

On to Florence, Italy, and all the amazing architecture and art you can imagine!

This was part of the lovely view of the Argon River

Our Suite was on the Argon, and the views were amazing.

Looking down the river as in this shot, you could see numerous bridges.

Directly across from our Suite at the Westin was another fabulous view!  Can you imagine having two large sets of French Doors overlooking this as you listen to the water falling over a small waterfall area?  Amazing!

Whichever way we faced there was something wonderful to look at, and wherever we ate there was something fabulous to eat.

One of my favorites in Italy was Panne Cotta...a soft flan like/pudding like vanilla custard which was always served with fresh berries and usually a couli of the same fruit...fabulous.

As we plotted our three nights here, we knew we had to see Michaelangelo's David as well as the work of Botticelli...so that meant visiting the Academie and Ufizzi Museums ..both of them were amazing, but if I had it to do over again, I would only see one each day...they are quite expansive and it takes a considerable length of time just to walk through.

David was more than I even expected (20 feet tall from one piece of marble), and the Ufizi Gallery and the work of Botticelli (including the Birth of Venus) were breathtaking. Don't miss either one if you have any interest in art at all!

There is definitely much to see in and around Florence, from the beautiful architecture to the fountains and art.

I even enjoyed the Mimes which worked the piazza near the Ufizi...

They were amazing...standing like statues for hours on end and so perfectly made up and dressed they actually did look like statues.  That is, except for Cupid who was quite flirtatious! LOL

Hugs from Cupid!

Another thing you can not miss in Italy, whether Venice, Florence or Rome is the delicious, refreshing Gelato! Oh my! Trying to decide which one to choose...thank goodness they usually let you put three flavors on one cone!  Not exactly easy on the waist (but we attempted to walk it off) but definitely worth the calories!

Choices, choices!

The cones are huge by the way!

This was a TINY shop but even they had a HUGE selection of flavors!

 Romantic and beautiful, excellent food a friendly climate...Florence was so very lovely.

We would head for Tuscany next...out into the countryside to visit Sienna and San Giminagno...both ancient towns on the crossroads to Rome and beyond.

But that is for another day...
Here is a lovely Summer Recipe for you to enjoy!

                                    SUMMER CHICKEN STUFFED RED BELL PEPPERS

3 Cups chopped chicken (I use rotisserie chicken and both dark and light meat)
1 Cup finely chopped Celery
1 Cup finely chopped Mild Sweet Onion
1 Cup seedless grapes, halved
1/2 cup chopped nuts (choose your favorite-pecans are great but any will do)
Helman's Real Mayonnaise ( this can be an amount to just moisten the ingredients, or more to taste)
2 Tablespoons FRESH Lemon Juice
Salt and Pepper to TASTE
(I also like using a little Cajun Seasoning to add a bit of ZIP)

Clean and cut in half three large Sweet Red Peppers (removing membranes and seeds) and set aside.
Mix all above ingredients thoroughly and fill each half of sweet pepper.  Chill several hours and serve over your favorite greens.  YUM!  Cool and refreshing yet full of protein and quite filling!

Until Later!


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