Thursday, June 18, 2009

Snapshots from a traveler #1

You know, I've been thinking.

This blog is about food, people and places that have great meaning to me, and the stories that connect all three. I tell you a heck of a lot about the food. I talk about the people all the time. I gush in nostalgic fashion about the places.

But what I don't do, at least on a regular basis, is share glimpses of the places I've visited. There are many beautiful, interesting, inspiring, meaningful places on this earth. I am very lucky to have been to some of them. It seems nearly criminal to keep images of them locked away on my external drive.

And so it is that each Thursday I'll share a photo from my travels -- captioned, but presented without excessive commentary -- for your viewing pleasure.

Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy -- from the air, July 1984.

13 comments:

Melanie said...

Oh wow! Gorgeous. And I am so jealous of your travels. Putting up photos on Thursday is a wonderful idea!

Anonymous said...

your parents must be wonderful people to have given you access to places such as this

robert said...

I love Anonymous. He or she hit the nail squarely on the head

Dianne said...

Thanks Melanie! I hope you enjoy them in the weeks to come....

Anon., you are correct. They are very wonderful, and I am very lucky.

Dad, don't let this go to your head! :)

Sue said...

hey - it was your sister who discovered this place.... please give credit where credit is due...

And, post the picture of that goat!

robert said...

hey sue, it was probably the north africans who discovered it. you just happened thru sheer luck to be the first in the family to visit.

Dianne said...

Sue, I hereby accord you credit for "discovering" Sardinia. Way to go! And I've already posted the goat picture; enjoy: http://stoveria.blogspot.com/2009/04/faint-sound.html

Dad, as usual, you make an excellent point. In fact, so many different people have come ashore in Sardinia over the years that the Sardinians got very good at fortifying themselves. Hence, a food culture that arises not from the sea, like you'd think it would, but farming of the inland. Because they were protecting themselves from marauders. Marauders like Sue.

Melanie said...

Dianne, completely unrelated (sorry!), you told me awhile back that your grandfather foraged for hen in the woods. I picked some more up at the farmer's market and I was wondering if you had any tips for their use?

Dianne said...

Hey Melanie, no problem! I just consulted Dad, who is my hen of the woods expert, to remind me of how he cooks them. After cleaning them, he blanches them in boiling water for about five minutes, then drains and cools them. When they're cool enough to handle, squeeze out any excess water. You can then proceed with cooking them, or you can freeze them in plastic baggies in single-serving sizes to use later.

Regardless of how he's going to eat them, Dad always begins by sauteing the cleaned, blanched and drained mushrooms in olive oil with a little garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper until the mushrooms are tender and a little crispy on the edges. His favorite way to eat them is to add some fresh tomato to the sauteed mushrooms, near the end of the cooking time. Cook the tomatoes gently, combining them with the mushrooms. He eats the mushroom-tomato mixture as a sandwich, on some fresh Italian bread with a little mayo.

He also adds the sauteed mushrooms to tomato sauce to eat with pasta, but says that mushroom sandwiches are his favorite.

He reiterates: the key is to blanch them in advance of however you're going to cook/prepare them. Otherwise they won't be fully cooked and the texture/flavor will be off.

Let me know what you do with them! I'm very curious to know what you come up with. Good luck, and have fun!

Melanie said...

Thanks so much! I'm off work tomorrow so I maybe trying the sandwiches.

Dianne said...

You are quite welcome! Dad and I hope you enjoy your hen of the woods!

Melanie said...

Dianne, I made the sandwiches and they were divine. I posted on my blog tonight. I quoted you outright, and linked to your page, so if you prefer I didn't let me know and I'll redo the post.

Dianne said...

Melanie, that is awesome! Thanks for the lovely mention, and I am so glad you enjoyed the sandwiches!