About



I packed my whole life in one suitcase.  Everything tangible that binds me from the Philippines ended up in that bag.   The most important ones were packed in my mind and heart.  I was moving to another country that's a thousand miles away to stay with the person I wanted to spend my life with.   That was in 1999. 

I had married into a big family of Italians who taught me everything I know.  The soul of every Italian family lies in the kitchen where old recipes are passed & recreated.   I spent a fraction of my life in Italy in the kitchen, learning or weaving my way along cobblestoned ancient alleys, still learning.

The extraordinary beauty of this country took out my newfound passions, cooking, traveling & photography.   Italy is a country of superlatives.  Food, wine, travel, culture & people.  It's a remarkable place to discover. 

Stay alongside me as I traverse through my life as a mother of two growing kids.  I'll describe to you what I tasted, show you what I saw and recount what I experienced.  With this blog, I will share the aroma of my life in Italy through food and travel in and outside the country.

The recipes I am sharing with you are my own inventions (unless otherwise stated) from my kitchen and cooked for my family.   I am not a professional in cooking, photographing & writing.  Consider this blog my cooking & traveling journal.  You are welcome to share my pictures and recipes but please don't forget to link back to me.

I develop recipes and write food & travel articles for She Knows. I am also a contributing writer for A Luxury Travel Blog and iBalsamic.

I am open for freelance work in relation to food and travel.  This includes recipe development, food & travel photography, reviews of food products, restaurants and hotels.  Please don't hesitate to contact me.

Thank you for taking the time to leave wonderful comments.  I appreciate the time you take in writing what you think.

Get to know me more with these interviews:
Italian Reflections
Juan in EU Magazine
B&B Gli Artisti

-Rowena (or Weng) Dumlao-Giardina


All photos and text copyright: Rowena Dumlao - Giardina.
If you re-post a recipe, please give credit and link to this site. But please don't re-post the full recipe.
If you are interested in the photos, please contact me.
You can contact me at:  weng.dumlao@gmail.com












31 comments:

  1. Anonymous06 May, 2011

    Complimenti per il blog. Le foto sono bellissime! Laura

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  2. Anonymous06 May, 2011

    Brava Weng, non vedo l'ora diassaggiare tutte queste tue prelibatezze. ciaoooo Gianni

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  3. Ohh, how I love Italian food! I hope to visit Italy in my lifetime. I love your blog! I'm happy that I discovered it!

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  4. Oh how I am blown away by this recipe and these pictures!! I am jealous of your Italian exploits, having wanted to live in Italy all my life. I will live vicariously through you and your food. Gorgeous. ~Megan

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    1. Thank you very much Megan. I'm glad you're pleased with my blog. That makes me so happy.

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  5. You have beautiful site and your food photos are amazing! Good luck and wish you more success!

    ~ ray ~

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    1. Thank you Ray! How I love your site too!

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  6. Just came across your blog for the first time today -- you've got some awesome recipes which I can't wait to try and even more impressive food photos!

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    1. Thank you very much Vicky. Tell me what you think when you have tried a recipe.

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  7. Weng,
    I'm just about to do what you did! Move to Italy to spend the rest of my life with the person I love. It inspires me that you're so happy!

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    1. Hi Maria. That's nice to know. I'm happy for you! Where in Italy are you moving to?

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    2. I'm moving to Bologna after we get married in June. I'm very excited but a little scared. Was it hard for you to get used to living there? I go back to visit family often, but a lot of people say visiting on vacation and actually living there are two completely different things.

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    3. Bologna is such a beautiful city and there's a growing population of international students there because of the important university in the city. It's the perfect place for you. I did visit my family often the first few years until I realized that what I was doing was wrong. Keeping both countries as my home was too much to handle. There should only be one place that I can call home and that is where my husband and kids are. I uprooted myself, not only physically, but more importantly, psychologically, from the Philippines. I willed myself to look at Italy as my home and and to let go of the Philippines. It cured my perennial homesickness and I didn't feel lost anymore.

      E-mail me when you have questions. Good luck Maria!

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  8. Anonymous18 May, 2012

    I ended up by serendipity on your blog, and it looks really nice.
    As an Italian, I am always happy and proud if someone loves and understands my country like you! And I do hope you will never regret your choice of a new home, though it must have been very hard.
    Good luck!
    Anna

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    1. For a thousand reasons, your message made my feel very well. Thank you for reaching out and making me feel at home. You are the first person who spoke what I was hoping to hear. I appreciate it. I would say the same thing to a person who moves to the Philippines and embraces the country with love. Grazie Anna!

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  9. I've have to say, your blog rocks! The recipes, the photos, everything! I adore the italian kitchen, but as broad and versatile as it is, its sometimes hard to focus and find delicious new stuff to make. You've been a marvelous help to my cooking, thank you :)

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  10. Elina, you're so nice to write all these. Thank you very much!

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  11. We just love your blog and it's clean bright photos.

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  12. Weng,
    Thank you for sharing your beautiful story. We went to Italy for the first time this summer and I fell in love with Venice and would love to go back. You have an amazing blog and I can't wait to try some of your dishes and read along with your continuing story.
    Hugs,
    Michelle

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    1. Thank you very much Michelle! It's always nice to receive messages like yours.

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  13. I just came across your blog. I also left my home with 2 suitcases and moved to Italy to be with someone. We were married there and had our son, before moving back to the States. I miss our time there, it was a very unique and amazing experience. As a chef, i was able to run a small Italian kitchen for 2 years, an experience I will never forget!!! Your blog takes me back to that special time in our lives. Thank you!!!!

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  14. Lee Ann, that is a marvelous experience! To be a chef and to run a small kitchen is a dream. :-) I'm glad you came across my blog. Looking forward to seeing you more. Thank you for your wonderful message!

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  15. thanks for sharing Rowena!

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  16. Nice to meet you Rowena, I've found out your blog only today but I will follow you from now on! Congratulations for your blog and for your photos which are really nice!
    See you soon

    Laura

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  17. Anonymous28 May, 2013

    Nice work and i like your food and all recipe anyway im Exec.Chef Richmonde Hotel Ortigas Job well done Rowena .. I hope to see you soon here manila thank you very much i will follow your blog

    Chef Jason Feeney Cruz
    Pls. friend me at my facebook Jason Feeney Cruz

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    1. Thanks Jason. I will actually be in Manila on mid-June for a week. I can't add you to my contacts in FB because your setting doesn't let me.

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  18. I'm a student studying in Italy at the moment, and I love reading your blog! The recipes are simple and easy to do (well most of them!) and I'm always looking for a good recipes to experiment with! I also really like your writing style, wish I could start a blog like this too!
    Leyla

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    1. Hi Leyla, So nice of you to write. You can start your own blog too especially if your heart is into it. I'm happy that you like my blog and recipes. :-)

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  19. Found you through Tastespotting and I'm just loving reading through your posts. just added your site to my "other foodies I love" section on my blog. :-)

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Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. I would love to know what you think!