Slow food


The opposite of Fast Food. The definition of slow food, food that is produced or prepared in accordance with local culinary traditions, typically using high-quality locally sourced ingredients. Follow the slow food movement on twitter

Slow Food means living an unhurried life, taking time to enjoy simple pleasures, starting at the table. The Slow Food founder  is Carlo Petrini from  Piedmont Italy.  It has since spread worldwide.  It strives to preserve traditional and regional cuisine and encourages farming of plants, seeds and livestock characteristic of the local ecosystem.

Puglia is one of the best destinations in Italy for slow food and wine lovers.  Visit Puglia, join our 4 day food and wine extravaganza in *June or  September you will have the unique chance to sample several Slow Food Presidia products – high-quality, traditional foods at the risk of ‘extinction’  and other local delicacies from quality producers. Alongside tasting wonderful produce, discover a region of overwhelming beauty and history.

Dates: June 7th to 11th or September 8th to 12th 2016
Book soon as places are now limited!
Price pp 580 euro.  Suitable for couples. Accommodation, all food and plenty of wine as listed below included!

1) Arrival, light lunch, aperitivo. ( a few hours free time to sunbathe, tour the area) . Hands on cooking class in the chef’s kitchen, 4 course dinner with wine pairing.

2) Breakfast, a visit to a wine cantina, wine tasting and lunch with wine pairing. Afternoon: Limoncello making class ( free evening to discover the area, choose a local restaurant)

3)Breakfast, Tour to a local cheesemaker to learn how to make mozzarella, burrata etc. ( a few hours free in the afternoon) Fun packed Pizza making evening 3 course dinner (wines included).

4)Breakfast,  ( free morning to explore or chill out by the pool),  afternoon Bruschetta served al fresco with Prosecco, watch a show by the pool at Villa Magnolia of traditional Pizzica dancers!  Followed by an amazing organic dinner at a Masseria, 8 courses with wine pairings.
















The importance of probiotics.


When sourcing food to serve our guests,  we pay particular attention to the quality of yoghurt offered at breakfast time. All yoghurts served here at Villa Magnolia have natural beneficial probiotics.

Yoghurt is a cultured or fermented milk product that is soured and thickened by adding specific lactic acid-producing cultures to milk. The basic cultures or probiotics used to make yoghurt are Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus. Additional probiotics are often added. There’s a difference between the plain yoghurts and the fruit flavours you see on shelves, though. Many of these are loaded with sugar or artificial sweeteners.  We look for options without artificial sweeteners like aspartame or added sugars like high fructose corn syrup or cane sugar. We also make sure there is less than 12 grams of sugar per container.

To combat allergens, dust mites and disinfect the bedrooms and soft furnishings at Villa Magnolia we use Probiotics. We purchase our probiotic products from * (Chrisal) the founder of the company  is from Holland, we had the pleasure of meeting him a few years ago when he stayed here at Villa Magnolia for a week.  Bi-Safe is a range of cleaning and care products for the body and household use which are based on probiotics (good bacteria)and contain no bactericidal chemicals. Disinfectants attack microbes makes them defend themselves and become aggressive and resistant. when this happens the disinfectant to not work anymore.

By using Bi-Safe the microbes (human unfriendly bacteria) are overwhelmed with population of good bacteria which causes them to stop multiplying. This is a natural phenomenon that occurs when a smaller population of bacteria and even animals, face an unequal struggle for resources, causing them to stop multiplying. There is not enough food for their offspring, and the population of microbes is reduced to a number which is no longer harmful to humans. The microbes are not directly attacked, because that is not necessary, since they spontaneously cease multiply. The probiotic bacteria control the environment and microbes become less aggressive.

*The University Hospital of Ferrara, Italy has decided after thorough testing to use only the industrial variant of Bi-Safe (also developed by Chrisal) for the entire hygiene of the hospital!


Pizza making in Puglia

Once a week here at Villa Magnolia we fire up our pizza oven, guests have the opportunity to make their own pizzas, its a fun packed event! I have been making pizza dough for many years, the following recipe is the fastest and easiest, however personally I prefer the slow rise pizza dough ( I will post the recipe soon), let’s start with this  easy recipe.

My easy Pizza Dough Recipe, makes 4 personal sized pizzas.

Prep Time: 3 hrs


4  Cups of plain flour
1 ½ Cups Water (approximate)
1 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Active Dry Yeast + a teaspoon of sugar
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil


Mix some of the water  (half a glass) with the yeast, sugar, leave to react for a minute or so, when bubbles have formed then mix all the ingredients together to form a soft dough.
Let rest for 10 minutes, then knead  (I always prefer  by hand)  for 7 to 8 minutes until smooth.
Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover  and allow to rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours at room temperature  until the dough doubles in size.
Punch the dough  and divide it into 4 equal sized balls.
Cover the balls of dough and let rest 60 minutes then shape.
To shape your pizza take a ball of dough and press into a disc shape.
Lightly flour top and bottom  with Farina di Semola (durum wheat flour)/cornmeal and gently press and pull the dough with your finger tips, turning it often to create a 10 inch circle, if you feel confident  throw your pizza dough in the air, be careful not to catch with your fingertips…use the back of your hand instead. Finally  top with your choice of ingredients.

The best pizzas are baked in a wood fired Pizza oven, if you would like to experience making your own pizza  then contact us

Turning point for wines of Puglia!

DSC00090.JPG                                                                                                           Puglia’s rich soils are abundantly arable and the region has long since been a primary source of produce for the rest of Europe, 50 years ago all of Puglia’s wine towns were near a train station, so the bulk wine in tanks could be shipped north. This has changed and quality is on the up, the past 10 years has seen a rise of outside investments, particularly from northern Italy.  Producers are upgrading and investing in vineyards and winery infrastructure, embracing new technologies and techniques.

Puglia’s indigenous varieties (led by the reds), to name a few are  Negroamaro, Primitivo, Susumaniello  these grapes are well adapted to the area and produce signature wines in talented hands. Sunny days ripen the grapes, while the largely clay based soil retain enough moisture for the sun soaked vines, wind promotes dry healthy conditions.

Puglia has enormous potential, tradition is a dynamic concept, a priceless asset! Another reason to visit Puglia, come and discover the food and wines of this region.


Ciceri e Tria (pasta and chickpeas)


Ciceri e Tria, is a traditional dish in Puglia, although the origins are Arabian. The finishing touches of flavour and texture come from frying some of the pasta and adding to the mixture of pasta with chick peas.

Ingredients for 4: – 200 gr Farina di Semola (durum wheat flour) 300 gr chickpeas, 1 carrot, 1 stick of celery, 1 garlic clove, 1 onion, 3 tomatoes or some tomato sauce, a little rosemary, EV olive oil, salt.

      Place the dried chickpeas in a bowl of water  and leave to soak overnight. The next day drain and rinse the chickpeas, place in a saucepan with the vegetables and enough water to make a watery soup. Cook on low heat, until chick peas are soft. Towards the end of cooking time remove the garlic and celery  ( or mince them with a fork and leave in),  add some salt.

      Meanwhile make the fresh pasta with the flour, water and a pinch of salt. Cover and leave to rest for 30 minutes then roll out the dough until its thin, cut into tagliatelle shape.  Fry one third of the tagliatelle in oil, when they are golden, drain and add a pinch of salt. The remaining pasta should be cooked with the chickpeas, serve the pasta and chickpeas with a handful of the fried pasta on top and add a drizzle of olive oil.  Some like to add grated cheese.  

Wine pairing with ‘ciceri e tria’.  A Vino Rosato Pugliese eg;  IGT Susumaniello Rosato ‘Tre Tomoli Rosa’ 2013’ dell’azienda Vigna Flora di Castellana Grotte (Bari), has won the gold medal for the  excellent producion of organic wines here in Puglia.

Travellers expect more!

Travel and hospitality industry is not the easiest business to be in. Expectations are high, it’s not just about sun, sea and some sightseeing. Travel industry is  never-ending and continually changing. In order to stand out, travel marketers must create moments of human relevance and authenticity in unexpected places. Travellers want to ‘experience’ their destination, they  want to have life-fulfilling experiences, and they are seeking travel experiences that closely align to their own personal values.The nature of the travel experience is impacted by the destination.  According to top advisors, the most-booked destinations remain the same year after year. Italy is by far the most popular!

Once the consumer has decided the destination, the real experience starts, so come to Puglia and immerse yourself in this Food and Wine 4 day extravaganza! Suitable for couples.


2016 Dates: June 7th to 11th or September 8th to 12th 2016

Contact info@villamagnoliaitaly for detailed itinerary and price.

1)Light lunch, aperitivo. Hands on cooking class, 4 course dinner with wine pairing.
2)Breakfast, wine tour wine tasting and lunch. Afternoon Limoncello making class.
3)Breakfast Tour and watch local cheesemaker make mozzarella. Fun packed Pizza making evening 3 course dinner (wines included).
4)Breakfast, afternoon Bruschetta served al fresco with Prosecoo, Pizzica dancers show by the pool! Amazing organic dinner at a Masseria, 8 courses with wine pairings.


A holiday is the chance of a lifetime to return home with lasting memories, let us help create yours.




Discover PUGLIA!

View of Villa Magnolia                                                   situated in the heart of Puglia, the ideal location to discover this relatively unknown region which is one of the most beautiful in the country.  Sun bleached houses, quaint villages, azure water, white sandy beaches, medieval castles, churches, rolling olive groves, delicious food and superb wines. It is a great value travel destination, perfect for those who want an authentic experience, but it’s also a spot where foodies will be overjoyed with the array of tasty options.

Villa Magnolia is just a short and easy drive from Brindisi airport (18km), situated just 5km from Torre Guaceto beaches,  a 10 minute drive to the beautiful ‘white city of Ostuni’, the famous ‘Trulli’ village of Alberobello, the underground caves with stalactites and stalagmites at  Castellana Grotte, the stunning Baroque city of Lecce or the famous ceramic quarter of Grottaglie, these are just a few of the amazing places to visit whilst visiting Puglia.

Spool at dusk

* Your stay at Villa Magnolia includes continental breakfast, WIFI, complimentary bottle of wine upon arrival, use of pool and spa, mountain bikes, pool towels, complimentary beach mats and free parking on site. All rooms have AC, large modern bathrooms with walk in wet rooms and hydro jet showers. For convenience of our guests there is a large kitchen, guests are welcome to bring their own drinks and snacks should they decide to chill out by the pool during the day. Complimentary tea, coffee and mineral water is available all day.  

Activities at Villa Magnolia: Once a week (weather permitting) hands on Pizza making evening. Wine tastings. Ayurveda massages (booking required). Cooking lessons. Concierge service with guaranteed bookings at some of the best restaurants in Puglia. Privacy guaranteed for VIP guests who require a discreet ambiance.

Should you wish to stay with the family during the months of July and August the option to rent the entire Villa self catering is now available! Contact for further information .