Paola Baccetti chef at Casa Ombuto cooking classes in Tuscany
Paola was born in the town of Bibbiena in the beautiful Casentino valley in Tuscany. Paola is a true Tuscan woman who is very passionate about cooking. Her mother was an excellent cook and Paola started learning her skills at an early age. At the age of 11 she spent about a month every summer with her uncle and aunt at their famous restaurant “Dino il Toscano” in Castelli Romani in Rome. She took an active role in their kitchen where they specialized in Tuscan cooking.
She studied to be a teacher and got her teaching diploma, but decided to stay with her great passion: cooking and teaching to cook.
In 1987 she decided to open her own restaurant “Porta de' Fabbri” in the old town center of Bibbiena and run this successfully for 10 years. A success thanks to her intensive research of good ingredients and excellent creativity! She enjoys “making people happy with my meals”: Paola now caters for private groups and other than teaching the Cooking classes Italy at Casa Ombuto she has also been catering for the Casa Ombuto villa rental guests since 2003.
Paola taught “Italian cuisine” at one of the oldest Universities for foreigners in Florence called “Lorenzo de' Medici”. She has also taught classes in San Diego and Santa Barbara (California) with great success.
Paola and her Swiss equestrian husband Rolando lives in a delightful Tuscan farmhouse in the countryside near the medieval town of Poppi with their horses, dogs and their two children Manuele and Alessia.
To Paola………”Cooking is art”. The menu she might make will inspire you.
Author of the cookbook Tuscookany The flavours of Tuscany.
Paola teaches the One Week Italian Cookery Course at Casa Ombuto.
Paola's menu for the Italian & Tuscan cooking lessons.
Please note that you will be receiving a cookbook with over 100 recipes and the sample menus below is just an indication to whet your appetite! This changes depending on the season and group. If you have something special you have always wanted to learn to make our chefs are happy to see if they can plan this in too.
ANTIPASTI / STARTERS:
- Crispy stuffed artichokes with Casentino’s saffron sauce
- Basil pesto cheesecake
- Pecorino cheese flan with truffle drops
- Eggplant parmigiana - Paola’s style
- Tuscan Onion soup/ Carabaccia
- Ricotta and truffle pie on a bed of salad
- Tuscan tomatoes soup/ Pappa al pomodoro Toscana
- Zucchini flowers stuffed with Buffalo mozzarella
PRIMI / FIRST COURSES:
- Beetroot and Potatoes gnocchi with Burrata Foam and Basil Oil
- Tuscan Bread Soup/ Ribollita
- Candy shape pasta stuffed with eggplant and buffalo with a fresh tomatoes sauce
- Baked ricotta Pasta with almonds butter sauce
- Tortellini with Walnut sauce
- Sea bass black pasta with Casentino’s saffron and cherry tomatoes sauce
- Pici with meat ragù/Bolognese
- Sous vide Duck Ravioli with orange sauce
SECONDI PIATTI / MAIN COURSES:
- Stuffed Chicken fillets in a pistachios crust
- Guinea Fowl with Vin Santo and Porcini mushrooms
- Lamb with confit tomatoes, asparagus and sweet garlic sauce
- Calamari and vegetables fritters
- Octopus salad with potatoes and olive pesto
- Crunchy pork tenderloin with pistachios
- Florentine steak with olive oil, green pepper corn and rosemary sauce
- Tuscan meat loaf (Paola’s mother style)
- Wild boar stew with Polenta
CONTORNI / SIDE VEGGIES COURSES:
- Fennel, orange and radicchio salad with olives and walnuts
- Rainbow salad with spicy croutons
- Upside-down seasonal vegetable pie with spinach sauce
- Season vegetable muffins
DOLCI / DESSERTS:
- Limoncello Tiramisu
- Apple fritters with white chocolate and yogurt sauce
- Chocolate, pears and cinnamon cake with chocolate mousse
- Amaretti di Saronno cookies
- Lemon Sorbet ice cream
- Liquorice Panna cotta and saffron mousse
- Nutella and hazelnut cake
- Zabaione cream with cat’s tongue cookies and raspberries