|Piena (Full) from a Great Meal|
In Umbria, Agnese prepared a lentil stew from the region the first night and we became familiar with each other over this first meal. My friend Ilenia invited me to her home in Porto San Giorgio this past weekend and we became fast friends over apertifs and pizza Friday night. Saturday we became closer friends during a wonderful lunch where we shared regional foods, languages and stories. I have come to think of Italian meals as marathons, you have to pace yourself in order to save room for the end. Our Saturday lunch consisted of tagliare (Italian cold cuts), bruschetta, an assortment of fried finger foods, vigesgrassi (this region's lasagne), crema catalana (like creme brulee), biscotti (cookies) and plenty of wine. Sunday I yet again found this warmth created by the sharing of a meal when Fiona cooked polenta with a delicious meat sauce for me. Every bit the example of a southern Italian, she said "Manja manja (eat eat)" until I could eat no more; again showing the Italian generosity. Interestingly, multiple people have told me that while Italians are incredibly generous hosts, it is unusual for them to have someone stay with them as my host family is doing.
|Mountains near Porto San Giorgio|
|Candelara by Candlelight|