Monday, October 13, 2008

Smiling Happy People!

Recipe for a Wine-Sized Barrel of Laughs!
So you take six intelligent, successful, happy women who collectively have survived college, excelled in male dominated businesses, reared children, volunteered for EVERYTHING and you put them in a piccolo (small) apartmento on the busiest (loudest) Via (street) in Firenze for 2 weeks and what do you get?
Well, we have all had the opportity to laugh at ourselves that is for certain! Today the west wing of the apartment has become known as the infirmary, heads colds have taken over the west wing! Other than that we have created the Sorority of dripping socks and leopard printed unmentionables as the laundry rack takes us most of the traversable space on the balcony or hallway depending on the time of day. "Are these mine?" is our motto, "Where is the chocolate stashed?" is our fight song - just add wine and the laughter cackles a little louder, the smiles get a little broader and we all go to bed happy that we are here together spending a warm and sunny holiday in Italy!
We are SO Fine!

Our trip to the Marcato Centrale got a huge laugh when Ipointed out the pasta shapes and Jeanette commented on how CUTE the pasta shaped like DOG BONES were.
Not So Much! (Double click the pic to see what the joke is really about!!)
At least no bone my own sweet dog ever chewed!
And then it seemed we saw them in every fine fook shop we entered and Jeanette will never hear the end of this good laugh!

Last nights dinner was really beautiful. I'm working in a kitchen that is limited!! The gas barbeque doesn't exist and I've done fine without it, but we've had to be creative with the utensils!
I found a lovely pork roast which I butterflied, pounded (with a gigantic rolling pin with handles!) and then stuffed with fr
esh finnochio sausage, herbes, fresh garlic and spinach. The roast was then rolled and tied with cotton twine, rubbed with olive oil, more herbes and cracked pepper and sea salt. I put the roast in a hot oven for 15 minutes and then turned the heat down and let it slowly roast for about 1 hour.
The side dish was gnocchi with mushrooms, peppers, lots and lots of garlic. I added some white wine, a cube of the mushroom bouillon and the drippings from the roast before topping it with grated provolone. I let the roast sit for 5 minutes or so after removing from the oven. Remove the twine and slice into 1/2 " thick slices. Yummmmmm!
Today was spent marketing for dinner tonight and then a hike up to Piazza Michelangelo for one of the best views of the city. There is a stairway from the river nearly all the way to this hilltop piazza- we were ready for gelato after that climb!

Tonight I am cooking the Fiorentina bistecca, the famous Chiannina (sp?) cattle from Tuscany. I've only had it once before in a restaurant but am anxious to give it a go tonight. We picked up FRESH porcini mushrooms, baby zucchini, string beans that are over 16" long (but we skipped the funny pasta- don't worry!)
I found a bottle of Poggiotondo as well, we shall be all smiles by bedtime once more. Ciao Bella!!

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