Italy in an RV
Jan. 7, 2010 6:57 pm
Updated: Jan. 26, 2010 3:28 pm
Tonight was the night for Italy. What a night! I recieved a compliment from my husband, the likes of which, I would have never expected to fall from his mouth! But I'll get to that.
Did you know that Italy's highest peak is Gran Paradiso which is 13,323 feet high? I didn't, either, but know I know! I read online today that Italian people take "tremendous pride" in their cooking. And after tonight, sitting here at the laptop and glancing up at one satisfied, fat and sassy, full husband, I think to myself that this is what they mean by that! I started prepping everything earlier this afternoon and got the Twinkie Tiramisu, Trailer Trash Style into the fidge. And then the rest sort of just came together after that! I gained a new appreciation of something tonight that I never really had in the first place, it was just something to add to spaghetti sauce and beef stews and that would be red wine! Never thought this day would happen...I like my bourbon, vodka and beer...none of that wine junk for me...but tonight, that has changed!
Italian food is greatly varied by region...amazing seafood on the coast, ribbon-shaped pastas in the north and macaroni with tomato sauces to the south. Wine is served with every meal except breakfast. Now this is a country that I would like to go and stay a couple of years! In Italy the heavy meal is eaten at mid-day...I bet they take a nap afterwards too!
My menu tonight was: Caesar Salad, Chicken Picatta, Sicilian Spaghetti and my version of Tiramisu! I started out with the Tiramisu...I was having problems parting with the money for a huge package of ladyfingers when there are only 2 of us and I have absolutely no room for storing leftovers, so I posted on the exchange and Keri came to the rescue. She suggested using Twinkies instead and just scoop out the filling. Ok, knowing how I am, that's so far out there and too freaking funny not to give it a try so I did. I didn't wind up scooping out the filling because, if you've ever sliced a Twinkie in half before, you'll totally know what I mean...the filling oozes out the side, so I left it in. I used 2 Twinkies per coffee cup. I doused those suckers with coffee flavored liquor...I know, you're supposed to use coffee, but what can I say, I like to booze things up! Then came the marscapone mixture....referring back to the compliment from my husband...he said that he worked for an electrical contracting company years ago in the San Diego area, the guy that owned it hailed from Sicily and his name was Joe...Joe's wife made him authentic Tiramisu one night for dessert and he told me my Twinkie Tiramisu, Trailer Trash Style was better than hers....WOW! Whodathunk it on the Twinkies???
The Sicilian Spaghetti recipe was from AR and I followed it to a tee...I'm not sure I liked it so much, but his Majesty loved it...so who cares if I cared for it or not! I get more satisfaction if he likes it! The Chicken Picatta was also an AR recipe...I read the reviews and some of them said to double the sauce because it wasn't lemony enough...I zested 2 baby lemons and added half the zest to the flour mixture that I breaded the chicken with and the other half to the sauce and then added another teaspoon of lemon juice to the sauce..his Majesty said it was just a skosh too much lemon, so next time I'll do the zest thing, but not the extra teaspoon of juice and it should be right on. The Caesar Salad was my absolute hands down favorite. I love anchovies! I could have sworn I had red wine vinegar, but, for the life of me, I couldn't find it anywhere! After about 10 minutes of frantic searching in that black hole that I call a cupboard, I gave up and used one capful of white distilled vinegar instead. You know, it might have tasted even better with the red wine vinegar, but I thought it was pretty frickin good with the regular stuff, too. I subbed a butter lettuce mix for the romaine, just because it was too good of price to pass up. So, as I drift off to sleep tonight in this little cramped rv, I'll think of Italy---75% of it mountainous, beautiful coastlines, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Sistine Chapel, Tuscany, Sicily........what can I say? It's gotta be on the top 10 list of places to see before you die! And, as I was reading this aloud to my husband, he told me I did have red wine vinegar and told me exactly where it was....ain't that something?
What I see out my window! How could you not have a great day waking up to this? 1-7-10
Twinkie Tiramisu, Trailer Trash Style!
Sicilian Spaghetti or in this case...Whole Wheat Linguine!
Caesar Salad, Chicken Picatta, Sicilian Spaghetti
Homemade Caesar Salad Dressing complete with Anchovies!
Smoke on the Water...Fire in the Sky...