Well, I learned how much it cooks down. I had a huge bag of spinach leaves and it reduced to hardly enough Spinaci alla Piemontese to feed two people. I haven’t been panicked much in this kitchen so far, but I was yesterday when I realized how unprepared I was for the vegetable course. I had some zucchini from the garden, though, so I sautéed those quickly and simply with salt and pepper about five minutes before we ate.

I also made Spaghetti alla Disperata, which essentially means spaghetti, desperately. It’s made with onion, garlic, capers, jalapeño chiles, tomatoes, and anchovies. I also made Pollo alla Fiorentina, or chicken in the florentine style. It’s made with tomatoes, mushrooms, onion, parsley, and garlic. It came out well, even for someone who doesn’t like mushrooms.

We also went to a beautiful “beach” yesterday. Giacomo had been there before and really enjoyed it. In order to get there we had to climb over rocks and up a big hill. Once we did that we arrived at the Most Beautiful place. There were hardly any places to lie down, but I did anyway. The boys jumped off the rock, but I didn’t feel like it so I took pictures instead. The current was strong, and there was a cave below us full of jellyfish (Meduse in Italian). The water was the most clear and blue I’ve seen here yet, and the wind, even though it was whipping, was warm. It was lovely.

Tonight I had some struggles with the beginning of the meal. I suggested, at tea time, that I was going to make chicken again. The professor scoffed, which made me nervous. I’m supposed to have gotten myself organized enough to call up the butcher and order specific qualities of meat for the next three days. I haven’t done that, so I wasn’t cooking rabbit or tongue tonight. In the end, he enjoyed my Polla al’Aceto. I also made Spaghetti alla Grecia and Cipole di Napoli, aka baked onions.

Tomorrow is the Next Day Off! I’m too tired to do anything tonight, even though everyone wants to go to Capolivere and bar hop. I might stay home and watch the Secret Life of Dogs on the couch. No cooking for me tomorrow, and a chance to sleep late!

One thought on “Spinach…..

  1. Yes, that is one of the things I don’t particularly like about spinach… You are learning so much — about food, cooking, chemistry, interpersonal relations, history, and more! I have come to realize that people respond (consciously or not) to the spirit with which one does something — cook a meal, sing a song, lead a class… And it sounds like you are managing to keep your enthusiastic spirit and loving heart alive and well as you hike up your learning curve regarding ingredients, translations, weekly meal plans, how each burner does (and doesn’t) heat up, etc. Brava!


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