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Travel is Good for the Soul and the Belly

I Beefsteak Trestina

By JudithKlinger | June 15, 2010

‘Tis the Season of the Sagra in Umbria. For weeks, we’ve been seeing this odd banner flying on all the signposts in Trestina, on bulletin boards in the bar, on roadside billboards. We thought perhaps it was a tomato, or some strange stylized ‘heart’ meant to promote the small town of Trestina. Then again “I Tomato Trestina” sounded pretty weird, but we’ve seen weirder stuff than “I Tomato Trestina”.

But on Saturday night, all things become clear to us. It was a beefsteak!

Maraschino Cherries, The Real Deal

By JudithKlinger | June 10, 2010

Maraschino Cherries It’s cherry season in Italy, and I’ve been not so patiently waiting to make another batch of Maraschino cherries. Last year’s batch was stupendous, addictive, a reason to drink another Manhattan. I’m not talking about those unnatural red things that are sold as “Maraschino” cherries. They gave Maraschino a bad name and should be banned! Or at least called something different like “Radioactive Shirley Temple Cherries.”

Summer Broiled Shrimp and Fresh Herbs

By JudithKlinger | June 7, 2010

In the spring, a livelier palate changes on the burnish’d hearth
In the spring, a young cook’s fancy, lightly turns to to thoughts of grill.
Apologies to Alfred Lloyd Tennyson, but as soon as the warm weather comes I want to eat things light and barely cooked. I want to eat things from the sea, I want to eat grilled shrimp, and linguine with clam sauce, and those little crabs that come from the Veneto. And I obsessivley go online to find a cheap place to stay at the beach. So I guess spring has sprung into summer here in Montone and it’s about freakin’ time.
This is how we celebrated the arrival of warm sunshine with a dish that could be a light meal of its own, or served as a finger licking starter: Summer Broiled Shrimp and Fresh Herbs. Easy livin’.

Culinary heritage: tradition, nostalgia or identity?

By JudithKlinger | June 1, 2010

Where does culinary nostalgia fit into our over stimulated psyche?There is no doubt that culinary nostalgia is certainly alive and well in regards to “Italian food”. Everybody loves ‘Italian food’. But guess what? There is no Italian food.
Does the US even have a culinary heritage? As things stand now, we aren’t passing along any culinary inheritance. Aerosol pancake batter is not furthering our heritage. And today’s question is: does it matter if the US has a culinary heritage? People in other countries, feel free to insert your country name. Unless you are French, and then it’s an outrage to even ask the question.

Culinary Heritage: Prison or Platform?

By JudithKlinger | May 24, 2010

“What is culinary heritage and is it always linked to tourism?” Is the Italian culinary heritage a prison or a platform? Please feel free to insert any nationality into that question.
Tell me, what do you think about your culinary heritage? Is it a prison or a platform? Is it evolving or devolving?

Springtime is Fava Bean Time

By JudithKlinger | May 17, 2010

Fave beans. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.

I love thee raw.
I love thee in salads.
I love thee paired with soft white cheeses.
I love thee as ‘maro’.