Laura Giunta Tobin
Hello and welcome to my blog!
My name is Laura, I am an Italian living on the French Riviera, the heart of the Mediterranean Cuisine.
Our home is just outside the charming medieval village of Saint Paul de Vence, famous for its art and home to many celebrities. We are right in the middle of the French Riviera, 40 minutes drive from Cannes and 40 minutes from Monaco. Nice and Antibes are only 20 minutes away and in only 1 hour I can be in Italy for my Italian food shopping (Ventimiglia Food Market).
My Food Life
I grew up in Rome in a happy family with 2 sisters and 1 brother, me being the third. Having to feed all those children and my father, my mother decided to make it fun and attended 4 Cordon Bleu Courses: Corsi di Cucina Amatoriale Cordon Bleu. We often had people over for lunch or dinner and our friends were delighted to come. So we would have Parisian Gnocchi, Turkey Rolle’, instead of the usual Pasta Asciutta and Bistecca. As a result, when I knew she would go in the kitchen to prepare those gourmet dishes, I couldn’t resist to help her and learn from her.
We would spend all our Summers in the South of Italy, in Reggio Calabria or sailing away in the Eolie Islands. Seafood and fresh fruits and vegetables were our daily meals, with plenty of family banquets, the most luscious at my Uncle Nicola’s Private Restaurant.
Before I settled in the South if France in 2010, I lived in many different countries (six at last count!). I married an Irish man Robert and have two sons, now age 19 Liam and 12 Francesco.
In 2015 I started this blog, as my sons were becoming more independent. I left an exciting career to start and raise my family and had been missing the thrill of “business challenges.” By 2015, I was ready to learn new things and to build a new professional life.
It is a struggle for us women; having to decide between the family and challenging career. While in the past I had many doubts, now in retrospect, I am so pleased with my choice. I took the chance to follow one of my passions: cooking for family and friends and, in the process, building precious, everlasting memories.
Unexpectedly, my husband Robert passed away in August 2018. Memories are what I have left to cherish, and amazingly, most of our happiest memories are linked to food.
- We fell in love eating a trout in a parcel and laughed at our baby Francesco smelling Stilton cheese.
- Food shopping was always a serious matter: fresh ingredients and special products.
- We spent memorable times together in the kitchen, getting our favourite meal ready, eating at the table with our sons every day.
- Our sons learned to appreciate good food even at restaurants. So Liam would rather order soup instead of French Fries, and Francesco’s favourite is octopus “legs”.
- The joy of having friends over for Barbeque, mastering many outdoor cooking techniques, from cooking the Brasilian Picanha to a Spanish Paella.
So many precious memories! A priceless gift in the face such a loss to our family.
Liam is now at university and it is only Francesco and me. Dinner time remains something special, we sit at the table together and talk about the day.
When Liam comes home from university, I always make his favourite: Sushi. And when our friends come to visit from abroad, we like to remember Robert by cooking his favourite meal and remembering his barbecuing skills.
Building your own memories
Above all, this blog is for you, to help you build your own memories. Something special to make to please a friend or a family member. Something to cook together or to just enjoy on a special day.
All recipes have step by step photos/video so don’t be intimidated by difficult techniques! Your Guardian Chef is here to help you, like a Guardian Angel.
My recipes are easy to make because I am not a professional chef, instead I learned how to cook from my mom when I was a child. Similarly, she was my angel with plenty of patience and maternal love, she taught me all the techniques and tricks of gourmet cooking.
Because I am so interested in trying new cuisine, when I travel the world, I always spend time learning and understanding local traditions. As a result, here you have it: a wide variety of recipes all made from scratch and explained in a very simple way.
That was me. Now it is up to you. Try a new recipe or a new technique, taste something that takes you back to faraway places or to distant times.
Build your own precious memories!
I hope you will enjoy taking this Gourmet Journey with me!
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2016 – April – “Salvare il mare, il sogno di un bambino: Francesco Tobin”; L’Editoriale; Monaco
The story aboutmy son Francesco, how he developed his artistic talent and at 9 year of age used it to make a difference for the seahorse and his environment in the Larvotto Beach, Monaco.
2016 – January – ‘Lunch with LT’ in English and Italian; Italy Food Monte Carlo; Monaco
Michelin Star Chefs are coming for lunch,….but I am the one who is cooking!
2015 – December – Volunteer Contributor to ‘In the Kitchen with Stars’ by Angela Van Wright, second edition published in support of the UNAKIDS Foundation; Monaco
Featured by Press:
2016 – October: ‘How to make France’s ‘most-loved’ dish: Magret de Canard’, TheLocal.fr
2016 – August: ‘How to make France’s famed Île Flottante dessert’; TheLocal.fr
2016 – August : ‘How to make the tastiest ratatouille’; TheLocal.fr
2016 – May: ‘How to make a traditional French cassoulet’; TheLoal.fr
2015 -November – ‘Challenging the Michelin Star Chefs to come for lunch’; L’Editoriale; Monaco
Laura invites four ” Chef étoilé Michelin ” for lunch at her home, to prove to her readers that even a home cook can entertain and satisfy the most demanding of guests.
Awards and recognitions: