Sunday, December 27, 2009

Dirty Little Secret

I have a dirty, little secret. Look what I bought today at Lidl! It's sliced, wholewheat bread. Shhh, please don't tell anyone -- especially any Italians. I came home right away and made myself a ham sandwich with mustard. My mind is reeling with the edible possibilities of other sinful delights. I think I see some french toast in my near future, smothered in Mrs. Butterworth's syrup, courtesy of my much appreciated, dear sweet mother.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

My Poor Persimmons

It's been snowing with freezing temps for three days... so far.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Salsa di Mele

I just made homemade applesauce for the first time and it worked! I had some gravenstein apples that after a few weeks in the refrigerator had gotten somewhat soft. I like my apples firm, like my coffee. Wait, that's not the saying. Anyway I've never seen applesauce here in Italy -- not even at Lidl -- and I'm so pleased to be able to make it fresh. Bring on the pork chops!

3-4 pounds of peeler, cored and quartered apples
4 strips of lemon peel
Juice of 1 lemon
3 inches of cinnamon stick
1/4 cup of brown sugar
1/2 cup of white sugar
1 cup of water
1/2 teaspoon salt

Put all ingredients into a large pot. Cover and boil. Lower heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes and remove from heat. Remove cinnamon stick and lemon peel and mash.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

I (heart) Lidl

I love Lidl! Lidl is a Germany grocery retailer that provides me with international products. They feature food items from a different part of the world on a rotating basis. This is just a sample of what's been offered lately and the first time I have ever seen cheddar cheese in Italy! I bought two bricks. I suffer from the assumption that all this good food fortune could end tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Button Sprouts

I thought they were called brussel sprouts??

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Olive Tapenade

I was invited last minute, which is very common here in Italy, to join my neighbors for dinner last week. Not wanting to show up empty-handed I decided to create an olive tapenade from some leftover Puttanesca sauce I had on hand. I always thought my recipe would make a nice bruschetta topping and here was a chance to put my theory to the test. I put about 3/4 cup of the sauce into a mini electric chopper and added about 20 small, pitted olives, two anchovies, a tablespoon of capers, a large garlic clove, a drizzle of fresh olive oil and a small squeeze of fresh lemon. Flatteringly, the group declared it was a hit. I thought so too!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Painted Shoes

Don't even ask me, because I don't know. I saw these shoes outside a leather goods store in a hilltown in Tuscany, Montepulciano. Maybe they were a way to get people to stop and notice and then wander into the store to see what other oddities abound. In case you're wondering, I kept walking. Me, I'm more of a leather purse gal.