A new look at cooking and home decorating...with an attempt to add more greens to the plate, more vegetarian options & hopefully lots of new ideas to explore

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Tuscan cooking

I have in my mind, drifted far from where I live. Drifted, to a land with beautiful mustard colored fields beautiful sunny, warm days. A land of fennel, Ragu, and Minestrone. A place where no doorbells or telephones ring with requests, but rather, with invitations. A place where people walk rather than ride around in cars or SUV’s . I am not sure why all of a sudden I am in this place in my mind, except to say that I was reminded by a family member the other day about some of our Northern Italian family roots.

It helps, of course, that I have actual memories of the Northern Italian countryside. I lived in Florence for half a year and traveled a bit around the countryside. I have fond memories of the area as well as a sort of “food memory” – a taste memory, if there is such a thing. All of my memories were recalled vividly this morning as I opened a jar of Porcini. The smell that came forth was heavenly. The earthy smell, hearty and warm.

I took the jar and used its contents to create a lovely Risotto. It was everything a good Risotto should be. Creamy but with no cream added. I plan to serve it later with spicy lobster.

I look forward to the months of fall here in my kitchen. Love, I do, the ways that dishes like pork braised in milk (this is both Italian and French), Ragu Bolognese, and panna cotta seem even more delicious and comforting.

I am torn though, as my heart is also in the French countryside- in the land of prunes steeped in Armagnac and hearty Cassoulet, as well as duck confit. Hmmm, what to make next…..


Cerpts said...

Hello from a passing stranger,

I was sitting here in Officeland aimlessly googling when I suddenly had the urge to search for Julia Child's Spinach Twins recipe. I have made this wonderful recipe in the past; as a kid in the 80's I taped the episode on TV and I own the original cookbook from whence it came. Imagine my surprise when my search directed me to your wonderful blog and your "Spinach Twins" post of last August.

I've been perusing (or should I say devouring) your wonderful blog for the rest of the day and I love it! I'm a major foodie myself (strictly amateur status) and love not only the recipes but also your extremely comfortable, engaging and welcoming way of writing. I particular like the descriptiveness you use when writing about the dishes and, in particular, the lovely way you evoked Tuscany in this very post. I really appreciate the vividness with which you illustrate the deeper meaning of these recipes; they're more than just "what's for dinner".

I can also relate very much to the treasure trove of your mother's recipes and your wish to preserve them. My mother also has a large accumulation of old recipes she keeps in her 1962 High School binder! Filled with newspaper clippings, handwritten recipes and detached pages of magazines from 1963, this is also in great need of archiving. While my own blog is mainly concerned with movies, I'm now seriously considering doing a similar "food blog" of my own after seeing your wonderful project.

I wonder if you would mind if I placed a link for your blog on my blog? Quite a few of my blog-frequenters are also confirmed foodies as well and I'm sure they would love to see your wonderful blog. And those pictures. . .Wow!

Lisa Pardo said...

I am so pleased to hear that you enjoy my blog. Please feel free to put a link onto your blog page. I love the feedback and wish you the best.