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Old 01-20-2012, 12:30 PM   #1
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Ortensia Blu and a Recipe, too.

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Hi, Everybody ~ I'd like to introduce you to a friend of mine. Laney is a Connecticut gardener who recently combined her 3 great passions ~ gardening, cooking, and the wonders of Italy. Her online store ~ Ortensia Blu ~ sells gourmet goodies imported from Italy. I'm always on the prowl for fab Italian recipes so I invited her to do a guest blog post and share a favorite recipe with us. Buon Appetito!

'Ortensia Blu' means blue hydrangea.{From Laney} Gardeners and cooks have a lot in common ~ we enjoy working with our hands, we're tantalized by the scents and fragrances in our gardens. It takes patience and time until we can celebrate our finished product. Iíve found that thereís a huge crossover between gardening and cooking Ė with many of us wearing and enjoying both hats (preferably brimmed straw ones!)

Ortensia Blu is the fruits of my labor. A new online store that brings together Italian specialty food products Iíve had a great time sourcing in Italy, plus recipes I get a thrill out of creating and preparing for my family.

What started it all is a simple blue hydrangea, which in Italian is called ortensia blu.

True blue Hydrangeas prefer acid soil, turning pink and purple in western alkaline soil.Actually I have a yard full of blue hydrangeas ~ my most favorite flower that Iíve planted and nurtured every place that Iíve lived. Aside from ones bought at the garden center or even the grocery store, many of them were gifts, since planted in the garden with fond memories of the givers.

I live in a part of the country where hydrangeas grow beautifully in the summer and Iíve turned some of the lovely white and pink ones to a gorgeous blue by adding aluminum sulfate to the soil. Kate says my soil here is more acidic which is why blue grows so well. I planted white ones a few years ago that Iíve kept pure and pristine, though they have the slightest hint of blue in the center so I guess Kate is right.

Pink and purple hydrangeas ~ as well as yellow, red, orange, white and all the shades in between of the many other plants, flowers and shrubs complete the color palette of my garden.

As much as I love all of the colors I see, my heart beats just a little faster and my mind calms a bit more when I gaze out at my beautiful ortensie blu.

Iím not too much of an indoor gardener so I have to wait several months until my hydrangeas bloom. In winter, I spend a lot of time in the kitchen. So, I thought Iíd share one of my recipes with you thatís simple to prepare, smells amazing, looks terrific and tastes fabulous.

Click here to find more recipes at Ortensia Blu.

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