Active Gourmet Holidays
Active Gourmet Holidays

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January News from Active Gourmet Holidays

 Active Gourmet Holidays

Greetings from Active Gourmet Holidays!

Happy New Year! Why not plan that trip of a lifetime that you have been talking about? Check out some great tours below along with a wonderful recipe from Italy.  


Active Gourmet Holidays is now on Facebook! Click here to LIKE US and please share photos of your trip!  

For more information on specific tours or pricing, please email Jo-Ann Gaidosz at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit our website at

ATTENTION: Please make sure to hit the "Click Here" button above if you are not seeing the entire newsletter with the featured monthly recipe at the bottom!  

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March 2011 News Program Photo DordogneCooking in the Dordogne
Southwest France - 5 or 7 nights

Available mid April to October - Monday to Monday

Join us in Southwest France for a five or seven night total immersion in the French lifestyle. Pick up a straw basket and each morning you will visit a different traditional market with your hostess and chef who will teach you how to select the best produce. In France gastronomy and life pair with market visits which are a a vital event held on the main square of the town.

Read more: Cooking in the Dordogne  

Jan 2013 Immersion LanguedocImmersion into the Languedoc
Languedoc, France - 4 or 6 nights  Available year round (excluding July and August) - Sunday to Saturday
Join a native Languedocienne on a culinary journey in this little known corner of southern France, nestled between the Camargue region to the east and the French Catalonian Pyrenees to the southwest. You will discover this singular historic region rich in traditions, art, architecture and culture and meet some remarkable personalities and spirited characters, from local chefs and winemakers to artists and artisans, all of whom are passionate about their craft and their land.

 Client Testimonial 


Jan 2013 Client Remark Photo  

"Jo-Ann was referred to me by our Italian Host saying she would meet all our needs and answer all our questions. In the process we decided to get more women to go with us and Jo-Ann buckled up and took charge. How she did it I will never know but I will be forever grateful. Our stay in the Roman Country side was just a wonderful experience. They attended to our every need and most of our wants. The accommodations were as Jo-Ann said they would be, exquisite! She didn't quit until she was sure we were in the air and was the first one to check on us when we returned. We all agreed that this would be a trip that would be hard to beat."


Marge C., Springfield, MO




Zuppa di fagioli con pasta fresca

(Bean Soup with Fresh Hand Made Pasta)

("Cooking in an Umbrian Home" Program) 

Ingredients for 4 persons

For the pasta:

3 eggs

300 g of plain flour

Try to get Tipo 'OO' flour - this is a very finely sieved flour which is normally used for making egg pasta or cakes. In Italy it's called "farina di grano tenero", which means 'tender' or 'soft' flour.


For the bean soup:

  • 150 g  of beans (cannellini or borlotti)
  • 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 medium carrots
  • 3 ribs of celery
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • Rosemary
  • 2 tbs of tomato paste
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • grated Parmigiano cheese for serving

Jan 2013 Recipe Photo - Umbria 

Prepare the hand made pasta:

Place the flour on a board or in a bowl. Make a well in the center and crack the eggs into it. Beat the eggs with a fork until smooth. Using the tips of your fingers, mix the eggs with the flour, incorporating a little at a time, until everything is combined.

Put it in the fridge to rest for at least half an hour before you use it.

Roll the dough with the rolling pin, dusting the board from time to time with some flour.

Then cut it in lozenge (diamond shaped). Now they are ready to be cooked in the bean soup.

Prepare the bean soup:

The night before, soak the beans in cold water so that the next day you will find them completely hydrated and ready to be cooked. Drain them and put in fresh cold water with half an onion, 1 celery rib and 1 carrot, gently let them boil until tender. Add - only now! - some salt.

Drain them, but keep the water!

Sautè in a pan with 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil, 4 garlic cloves, 2 diced carrots, half chopped onion, 2 ribs of celery and 4 rosemary stems. If you like you can add some pancetta (bacon). Let cook for 4-5-minutes at medium heat.

Add the drained beans, 1 tablespoon of tomato paste and 2 - 3 liters (about 8-12 cups) of the water. There must be enough liquid to cook the fresh egg pasta you are going to add! Let the pasta cook for 3-4 minutes (depending on its thickness).

Serve with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, grated parmigiano cheese and freshly ground black pepper.



Contact Information
Active Gourmet Holidays
Jo-Ann Gaidosz
Phone: 1.203.732.0771
Fax: 1.203.734.6903
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Skype: active.gourmet.holidays 


"Dear Jo-Ann - We just had the most amazing week. It was everything we could have hoped for and more. We are already planning a "make your own pasta party" at our house to introduce friends to the very unique flavours we tried and made! Jo-Ann, the others who came through Active Gourmet - Ed, Cathy and Kelly were all very complimentary about the service they had received from you, as were we. I was hugely impressed with your immediate attention to every detail and I will certainly recommend friends to your website if they are considering similar trips to ours." - Joneen and Ray S., Auckland, New Zealand

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