Back on Line! The story of a rabbit, some basil and a chicken

Saturday morning, I go upstairs and there is our rabbit, laying on it side. It’s still warm, but there’s no sign of life. I try this, I try that, and POOF, I know our rabbit has died.
The rabbit is our broadband connection machine; it’s a little white plastic thingy that vaguely resembles a rabbit.  Mostly I curse the machine, while knowing it’s the only thing that stands between me and dial up. Here I was on a Saturday (!!) holding my still warm, dead rabbit, knowing there was no chance at all to get internet before …..well, maybe Monday. See, it’s bad luck to get anything new on a Monday, or start a relationship, or reconnect to the internet, so I knew, in my heart, that Monday was a long shot. 
I’ll spare you the details. It’s Wednesday, we’re back, but it took two rabbits to get here.

To pass the time, I fooled around in the kitchen.
Fresh Basil Pasta
Seems I have the incredible reproducing basil plants on my hands. No matter how much we cut, we have more the next day. Looking for something else to do with the basil, I tried incorporating it into pasta.  I’ve had, and enjoyed, a precious sheet of pasta with herbs lovingly embedded, but that’s not what I wanted. I’ve made green pasta (with spinach), but I didn’t want that either. I wanted to make a pasta that would give you a bite of basil mixed in with the sauce, a flavor that ran through the sauce, but wasn’t the base note, I wanted a little bit of a basil treble here and there.  I used my basic pasta ratio: 1 part flour to ½ part egg and a pinch of salt. When I had the pasta partially rolled out, I snipped bits of basil onto the pasta, folded it over so that the pasta was embedded and then rolled the bejeezus out of it to get it thin again. Guess what….it worked.  I made another roasted vegetable sauce, and the subtle flavor of basil drifted in and out with each bite.  Now, I’m wondering what else I can embed in my pasta. Basil Maltagliata

Pollo in Porchetta
 The other, hello!, why didn’t you think of this sooner moment, was ‘pollo in porchetta’.  The expression “in porchetta’ means cooked with fennel.  Normally, porchetta is a garlic and fennel roasted pig, and porchetta sounds like pork, but in Italian, pork is suino, or miaile…not pork-o. And pollo means chicken in Italian, so now you understand that catchy name:  “pollo in porchetta” It’s  chicken roasted with fennel. I took the little chicky, some fennel fronds and stalks from our orto, a few cloves of garlic, ½ of an orange and filled the birdie’s cavity, the skin got a dousing with salt, pepper and fennel pollen and then was roasted at about 325F until the skin was brown, crispy and we were far too hungry to wait any longer.  The only thing missing was a nice rose wine. Ah….we made due with some Grechetto and life wasn’t so bad.
It’s nice to be back online!

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