Sunshine and warmth at Bellaugello Gay Guest House have been the predominant feature throughout September. It is a month I enjoy; The infinity pool is deliciously swim-able, the heat of high summer has warmed the land and the stones of our ancient house, and autumn colours just begin to show their golden ruddy hues.
Early mornings are magical, mist clinging to the valley below whirls and swirls gently. Slowly it lifts and dissipates to reveal another fine day.
I am particularly sad right now as I am not at Bellaugello. A long planned short trip to Istanbul to both see the sights and meet a friend has me sitting, not at my kitchen window, but, in a hipster hotel bedroom. My view through a grimy narrow window has me looking down an alleyway. So very different to the large views at Bellaugello Gay Guest House. The strokes of my keyboard are punctuated by the hammering of drills, grinders cutting steels and busy city life.
Flying in, the immensity of the city, a city I had long dreamt of visiting exceeded my imagination. A massive white city with futuristic skyscrapers punctuating blue skies. Straddling the Bosphorus, the beginning and meeting of two cultures had always drawn my curiosity. The road from the airport to the city runs along the shore of the Bosphorus. The water punctuated with tankers and cargo ships each petulantly announcing the movement of global mass trade. Lining the shore new skyscraper apartment buildings reach skyward. Stainless steel and glass, security entrances, irrigated gardens, I’m sure they have awesome views and fine concierge services. Sadly they are unlikely to be lived in, built solely for investment. Like ubiquitous street furniture architecture has become globally bland and depressingly uniform. Another day another city but the same banality. Simply September is best at Bellaugello.
Banal is not a term that you can use about Bellaugello Gay Guest House. We strive to be normal, but rarely achieve it. September has been a red month. We delighted in hosting a young couple of honeymoon guys from the USA. Red roses on arrival, petals strewn on the bed, a private dinner cooked for them and served in their suite. Romance and a honeymoon crafted with love, you cannot beat it!
Their pampering included relaxing massages on a deck deep in the beauty of the Bellaugello Gay Guest House gardens. Simply September at Bellaugello Gay Guest House.
Recently I spent a hot day at my neighbour’s organic farm harvesting red grapes. We worked down the rows on the softly sloping hillside. Conversation flowed as we plucked juicy red grapes from the vines. The vendemmia is good this year. Plump luscious grapes yielded 22˚. A generous jug of the sweet juice was placed on the lunch table. With hands sticky from the grapes in the shade of the Mulberry tree we ate truffled pasta. Simply September in Umbria.
Intensely red burns the wood in our oven during our ‘giro pizza’ evenings. The oven is fired up to 430˚c and pizzas take a mere couple of minutes to cook. Guys take their hand at making and cooking their own pizzas. It is not as easy as Matteo makes it look! As the fire subsides at the end of the evening I bake bread. Surely there can be little better bread than organic sourdough baked in a an ancient wood fired oven. It takes a lot of turning and checking, and as I pull the baked loaves out of the oven I put in the beans. As in the past the heat of the oven is used for many purposes. I have discovered the trick with Cannellini beans in a bottle. This Tuscan recipe, which incidentally nobody here in Umbria seems to have heard of is simplicity itself;
- Soak 500g of dried cannellini beans then boil them for 45 minutes in salted water.
- Throw a large pinch of rock salt into a sterilised jar.
- Add two plump cloves of garlic.
- Two sprigs of rosemary and two bay leaves fresh picked from the garden.
- Fill to 1/4 height of the beans with Bellaugello extra cold pressed virgin olive oil.
- Sit the lid on the jar (do not screw it down tightly) and place overnight in the oven.
As the fire cools the beans slowly cook and absorb the flavour of the oil and herbs and seasoning. Ten to twelve hours should do the trick. At Bellaugello Gay Guest House we serve them as an aperitivo or snack to accompany a glass of local Sagrantino that best of Umbrian wines. They will keep in the fridge for up to two weeks. Simply September at it’s best.
Simply back by popular demand is our breakfast cake. At Bellaugello Gay Guest House it seems September brought out the sauciest of cakes and deserts. This time chocolate with gold glitter.
and for a desert rich soft Swedish chocolate cake with a pink sparkle dusting…
Simply September being a bit naughty 😉
And for those of you who follow my blog and were upset at not having seen my cock and reading that indeed I had lost my cock, I have good news; Recently holidaying in Sitges two Bellaugello guests spotted my cock or at least wrote “We have a large cock in hand (So to speak)” and they are having it returned to me at Bellaugello Gay Guest House. I am so looking forward to be reunited with my cock. Photos to follow upon receipt. Simply splendid September 🙂