Monday, September 03, 2007

Another sunny day at Nascondiglio

3 Settembre
Ciao a tutti. Well, we went from full saturday night to empty sunday night. We both breathed a big sigh of relief, then cleaned up 4 rooms in preparation for this week and headed to the beach. Last night i saw Shrek Terzo in italian and understood almost everything. Now maybe I can work my way up from cartoons to thrillers or comedies.
Saturday night we took in the big wine and Slow Food festival in Offida. As I said, the Slow Food objective is to make people more conscious of where their food comes from (hopefully it is locally grown and not from 10000 miles away), as well as how it was raised, whether animal or plant.
90% or so of the apple varieties which were in Italy 100 years ago have disappeared from the market and are replaced by beautiful, fast growing, disease resistant, tasteless varieties. Slow Food's Presidi products are in trouble of disappearing and often times have only one producer left in the world. By giving financial and marketing support, Slow Food hopes to help prevent the extinction of these products. Lots of kids these days don't want to continue the family's business, because the work is not easy or highly reimbursed.
The pictures show a couple behind a booth cooking and giving us some muscles which are harvested south of Ancona near Conero ( a famouis beach, bird migration spot and DOC wine growing area). The fisherman stay submerged for 4-5 hours very early every day before the seas get too wavy and harvest them.. as i remember there are only 5 or 6 qualified divers left. They were wonderful by the way. The couple stayed with us at Nascondiglio for the weekend.
Next you will see a display of the famous Olives of the Tenere variety with which they make the ascolana olives which are stuffed with a variety of meats and parmigiano reggiano cheese, then battered and fried. MMMM. These are from one of the best frantoi or olive crushers in the zone and they make their own oil and have a large olive grove near us down in the valley of the Tronto river. Then you see the red mini eggplants from the southwest of Italy which they cut and package under olive oil and they make a wonderful topping for bruschetta.
Also, another dawn pic from the other day 5 minutes after the 1st one.
Finally, if I am not being redundantl, I will give you my normal brushcetta recipe... I have been eating bruschetta almost every day, because I don't want to waste the bread uneaten but cut for my breakfast folks, so I toast the bread before it gets hard enough to break ceramic and as it arrives from the toaster I paint it with a cut garlic clove, then top with a mix of tomatoes, red onions, garlic, capers and olive oil. I will leave it up to you the proportions, but lots more tomatoes and maybe 1/3 cup of onions and a tablespoon each of garlic and capers and for more spice a little finocchio or fennel seed! Simple and very good an lasts in the fridge for a few days without a problem. Another secret is it is a great simple topping for pasta which is what i had for lunch.
And think of all those lycopenes you are eating!
Ciao dds

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