|ready for the grape harvest|
My summer was not a happy one, I spent most of August in California with my brother and sister, closing down my mom's house. We had the burial while I was home, sold everything at an estate sale.
It drained me emotionally and physically. I came home empty inside.
While I was in California, I was not allowed to cook in the kitchen as the whole house had been taken apart to do the estate sale there. Not being able to cook and living among boxes I felt homeless, which I guess I am now in California, the family home is being sold.
Arriving back in Tuscany, I couldn't wait to cook and get my mojo going again in the kitchen. Classes have already started and as well as finally sleeping through the night, I am finding my Tuscan cooking soul once again.
|parmesan cheese bowl for our gluten-free pasta|
I was also blessed to be invited to attend a wine festival in southern Italy as part of a press trip. There is nothing I love more than food and wine festivals in Italy. How can you not adore a country that celebrates food in so many ways? We spent the weekend down in Benevento and did a full immersion in the wines and foods of the region.
I now have my batteries recharged and am ready to dive into Fall, my favorite season to cook. Wine Festivals go on all month all over Italy. October is the EuroChocolate festival in Perugia and then the olive oil harvest starts, October in Sicily and November or later in Tuscany.
|Salt flats in Trapani|
November is also my Sicilian Kitchen tour, I have space available and hope you can join me.
I adore Sicily so much, I hope to move there for at least half the year and teach day classes as well as organizing more week-long programs in 2012.
As soon as I get home, I am going to see how the figs are behind my house. I need to prepare more of Francesca's fabulous figs to serve with gorgonzola!!! My new drug!
When I get my computer hooked up at home, will post about my fabulous weekend in Benevento. Learning about new areas in Italy is like finding a treasure. Although I have been here for over 25 years now, I doubt I will have time in my lifetime to visit all the places on my Italian bucket list.
What towns or regions are on your list?
Once you get the biggies down, Florence, Venice, Rome, Naples--- then? Sicily? Puglia? Le Marche?
Do you just return to the same places you loved or risk and explore?
It is always an adventure.
|chili peppers are ready|
I hope to find my chili peppers ready to harvest when I get home and from the markets will buy some to make some sauces to kick up winter. Mostly hang them to dry in my kitchen and just cut off pieces as needed. The chili peppers in the foto are tradtionally boiled in vinegar, then hollowed out and filled with anchovy and caper. The gentlemen that was selling these chilis said to make a breadcrumb mixture. I will do my homework and post my recipes.
Thanks for following me-- always nice to have friends hanging around the kitchen-
cook for someone you love