30 October 2007

So what's there to see in Napoli?

What do you show an Adorable Friend from Paris when she comes to visit? Tough question but my answer was to take her to Spaccanapoli! It literally means 'split Naples' because it splits this ancient city in two, this street is also called the Decumano. This area was deemed a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1997.

There is a lot to see and do in this area including great shopping for presepe/creches, good luck charms, great pizza, good museums and a really good look into the chaotic streets that I have become immune to.
Adorable Friend was amazed by the amount of everything and I was amazed by the things she pointed out that I don't even notice anymore. I don't notice the laundry hanging from everywhere, the stay animals, the trash piles, the dodging of the scooters, the level of noise, the amazing fall sunlight and sky, the rich smells of the ragu cooking, the pungent fruit stands with melone, kaki (persimmons), melograno (pomegranate) and all the other fall fruits. So here are a few pics for you to enjoy the short tour full of saints and sinners.

What's for lunch in Napoli today

It is a strange day in Napoli -started cold and humid and now it is overcast and nippy. Perfect weather for a little warm up from Anna's kitchen! Today we have a traditional Pasta e Fagioli (the beans are in season!).

Some Cheesy Love from France

Okay okay, just one more food love post (for today). So I'm still trying to make it through the wonderful cheese that my BFF (best French friend) brought me from Paris. I have to make a confession, I have NEVER liked blue cheese (aka Roquefort) until now.

It turns out that good Roquefort is moist not dry and crumbly like they sell in other countries. What a taste revelation! Spread some Roquefort on toast with toasted walnuts and you have a savory sandwich that will be begging to be eaten! While strong it isn't overwhelming (like blue cheese is).

Mmm... and the other cheeses..... well spread the love on some bread and I'm in nirvana! Such a lucky girl and even Little Man loves the cheeses!

28 October 2007

What's for lunch this week at Anna's

Sorry, it has been awhile since my last post. Things have been crazy around here. The two biggest things happening have been my BFF's (Best French Friend) visit and the news that we will be moving to a city that's burning down as I write! More on these two later...

For now take a look at this gorgeous plate of Scarpariello (pronounced around here as Shh-kar-PA-RRiell) and that is Anna running around the in the background (at the speed of light of course!).

For the next course we have Aurichio cheese and roasted peppers in olive oil. Buon appetito to your eyes! If you'd like to check out the bread that goes with this meal check out TableBread where I'm guest blogging while the baker is out.

17 October 2007

E tu quid pro quo?

How about we have a little blog love fest? I have a few blogs on my blog roll* and would like to grow the list a little. So, if you have an interesting blog shoot me a comment and let's see if we can make a little room for each other.

*of which I would love love love a little reciprocity -per favore?

What's for lunch in Napoli today

I was carefully considering what to post today when the door bell rang. God love her, it was my neighbor Anna. She is the epitome of a good Italian housewife. She does the following:
  • makes the beds
  • sweeps the floors 3 times
  • washes the floor twice (the whole house)
  • vacuums the floor (every chance she gets)
  • dusts all items from the walls to the flowers
  • washes all the windows and the shutters and the window sill
  • cleans the stove top 3 times
  • cleans up the sinks 10 times
  • bathrooms get cleaned three times (top to
  • bedrooms thrice as well
  • cooks from scratch lunch and dinner (and any other snack her man child should want)
  • cleans off all the glass top tables 4 times (at least)
  • washes 3 loads of laundry then hangs it out to dry
  • irons ALL laundry items (including the rags used to clean "so that they sit well folded in the drawer")
  • goes grocery shopping (at the dry goods store, at the veggie man, at the butchers, at the fish mongers and at the cleaning supply store)
  • picks up the children and drops them off at least 3 times
ALL this in just ONE day! You can't hire help that is that good! She is really amazing. Oh yes, and today for lunch she cooked up Risotto a la Verza. In English that would be rice and savoy cabbage which is now in season. I'm not the biggest fan of the cabbage family but when it is made this way it is kind of tasty especially if it is made for you! This time on my photo I didn't finish it all first (thought you might like to see it first!) ;-) So would you like to see what else she sends down?

15 October 2007


This is my little "shout out" to the environment for Blog Action Day. I'm going to list some easy things YOU can do today and everyday:
  1. ride a bike or walk to do your errands
  2. use your pockets! don't use a disposable bag for just one or two store items
  3. go vegetarian! ok, hard core meat eaters just do one meal without meat
  4. turn off the water when you're soaping up in the shower
  5. eat local food (mmm)
  6. pick up just one extra piece of trash a day (yes even if it isn't yours)
  7. avoid white clothing (to avoid over use of chlorine)

Bloggers Unite - Blog Action Day

What wonderful things are you doing to help our environment last? -leave me a comment!

[big thanks to Sognatrice and msadventuresinitaly for letting me know what day it is]

We're baack!

Well, the Little Man missed the memo. I was supposed to be on retreat taking in the fantastic food, yoga and healthful meals at Locanda del Gallo in Umbria. [Yes, contest is now over and thanks to those who guessed] The Little Man was NOT sleeping (I suspect he was still jet lagged from the U.S. the previous week) nor was he eating. We wound up driving back home earlier than planned with me sulking the whole way home.
So what do quasi Neapolitans eat when they get home??PIZZA of course! It is tradition that we either eat pizza or pasta as soon as we get home because nowhere else in the world is it as good. My favorite kind is a simple Marinara with fresh rocket (arugula) on top. Just the wonderful tomato sauce, garlic and fresh olive oil --mmmm... Little Man and his father prefer the pizza ai quattro formaggi.
[sorry I would have taken a photo of the yummy pizzas but I was just too hungry to stand there and not eat it up]

08 October 2007

Guest Appearance at the Table

A fellow blogger and friend of mine recently asked for my professional opinion on Copyright and Patents on food recipes. Check out his site Table Bread for my answer and for his yummy bread creations (be warned: do not check it out if you are hungry).

Like they say over here, "Si non non c'e pane non c'e cibo." [If there is no bread there is no food -aka a cupboard without bread is a cupboard without food]

A dopo!

07 October 2007


Oh lucky me! I'm off for a few days to go up north for some much needed rest, good workout and to visit some dear friends. However, I cannot leave you without a little something so...

Where am I going?
Hint #1 It is a special hideout
Hint #2 Here is a photo

Winner of this contest will get some Italian Chocolate Kisses (or if you are here in Italy then I will offer you your choice of U.S. Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups or a bag of Tortilla Chips -yes, it is very hard to get these items here!). Residents of any other countries may get their choice (of course where legally allowable).

To enter leave me a comment with your winning answer and your email or way of contacting you. Good Luck!

*Sorry, this contest is not open to cheaters (friends and family that I've taken to this special place).

05 October 2007

Blowing Sunshine & Digging for treasure

Ok, I admit that I have to tell everyone. While in London one of the coolest books I picked up was a board book for my Little Man. The board book is titled Dreams of Flying by the photographer Jan von Holleben. This little gem is full of really wonderful fanciful photos of children. The place where I bought a couple is sold out but you may still be able to order a book or two from his website.

Please note that the photo on the right isn't included in the board book it is from his wickedly funny website -it was just too much fun to pass up!

04 October 2007

October who?

No, no thank you. I'm still working on September. Since I've last left you I've either been on the road or doing laundry. A long London weekend took our breath away (oh yeah and our wallet too). We made the mistake/had the good fortune of being there for London Fashion Week and the London Design Festival. The Design Festival wasn't anything to write home about -so I won't.

What was and is coolest and the HOTTEST TICKET in town? The British Museum's The First Emperor: China's Terracotta Army Exhibit. First off I have to tell you that the promotion of this was fantastic. The day we got into London there was a television special on the BBC that follows the history and installation of this exhibit in the British Museum's Reading Room (1st time ever for an exhibition there!). The round Reading Room was transformed, books moved and false floor built for this exhibit. The work, planning and the sound track to this exhibit are amazing. If you get even half a chance don't miss it the exhibit runs until April 6, 2008!

I managed to only get my paws on the exhibit coffee table book and the CD soundtrack, they get an A+ on my bibliophile scale!