Orecchiette pasta will forever remind me of the trip I took to Puglia, Italy with my mom to attend The Awaiting Table cooking school. We learned how to make our own little “ear” pasta; it was surprisingly easy! When I saw a box of orcchiette pasta on the shelves at the store, I couldn’t resist.
We are back from our adventure to Panama! We spent twice as much money as we had budgeted, but we learned a lot about what we will do for our NEXT trip. This was the first time I have looked forward to returning from a trip. Don’t get me wrong, the trip was amazing… and two and a half weeks off work- awesome! But, for once in my life I have a job that I love and a home that I look forward to coming back to. Most of all, I was excited to cook for myself again. By the end of our two weeks in Panama, we had eaten enough onion rings, fish and chips and tacos for quite some time. I was excited to cook HEALTHY options!
So at this point in my New York restaurant review journey we have had American and Japanese; now let’s take a trip to Italy. This experience was unlike any restaurant experience I have ever had. The executive chef of the Armani Ristorante is the former chef de cuisine of The Modern. He was very good friends with one of my coworkers, so when he heard that we were coming in to eat he went all out. After he came out to say hello our waitress informed us that he had a menu in mind for us and asked if he had permission to serve us as he pleased. Of course we said YES! Each course was paired with a different wine and any dish involving mushrooms was garnished with more white truffles than you could ever dream of. I was in heaven.
As some of you may know, I am applying to the Basque Stage Sammic Rising Stars Scholarship. If I win, I get to do a 3-month stage at Xarma restaurant in San Sebastian, Spain! If you follow my blog, you probably already know about my addiction to food and experiencing new cultures, and how excited I get when I can combine the two! As part of my application, I had to create a dish to share. I wanted my dish to represent who I am, as well as my style of cooking.
I can’t believe that it has already been almost a year since I went to Italy! Do you remember my fairy tale trip to cooking school in Southern Italy last fall? If you missed it, here are some of my posts from my trip:
Do you hate making decisions? I kind of do. This week was filled with some big decision making, I will share more with you when things are more solidified. Either way, it’s weeks like these that make me want to just pack my bags and go, yet again. I don’t want to decide on things, I just want them to happen; unfortunately this is not always how life works, so for now I will hope that I am making the right decisions and that things will figure themselves out in the end. Our guest blogger this Friday is one of the masterminds behind SaucyCooks, Jill, who has also had to make some big decisions. Luckily for us, they involved her starting the SaucyCooks blog. Check out her delicious Chicken Marsala recipe for this week’s Featured Foodie Friday.
First off, I want to say THANK YOU to all of your comments about my graduation! I am so excited for everything to come!
I’ve recently realized how much my foodie personality has overpowered my 21-year-old party personality. For my 21st birthday I did not go to Vegas like most kids would; instead, I went to San Francisco with my parents and ate at delicious restaurants for three days straight. Then, last week after my graduation, I didn’t go out partying with my friends; instead, I went to the restaurant that was rated #1 in Colorado by 5280 magazine, Frasca… again, with my parents… Personally, I would much rather celebrate a special occasion with good food than with a night of drinking. Let’s be honest, as a 21-year-old, you don’t need a special occasion to drink.
Last weekend, I finally went snowboarding for the first time in SEVEN MONTHS! It got me thinking, has it really been seven months since I left for Africa? On top of that it has already been over a month since I left for Italy! It is kind of scary how fast my last semester of college is going. It is a bit bittersweet though, I can’t believe I am graduating, but so excited to move to Hawaii for eight months! I am still looking for a job, but hopefully will find one before I go! I know I promised to share a few recipes from my Italy trip, so here is the first one. Easy, but one of my favorites.
Finally, to the cooking part of my cooking trip! We headed to a small town called Spongano the morning after our welcome dinner in Lecce. This is where the castle was located. Some people may call this a manor house, but call it what you want. There were like 20 bedrooms and bathrooms and an awesome pool and a garden filled with all sorts of fruit trees… I’d call that a castle. (Also, thanks to my mom, the host of the trip, for most of these photos! I was too preoccupied to take pictures most of the week. If you think you would like to go on this trip next time she takes people, check out her site here!)
I wish I could have posted this earlier, but things have been a bit chaotic since I got back to Colorado from San Francisco. For my 21st birthday weekend (the 25th-28th), my mom, dad, two brothers, best friends and brother’s girlfriend spent the weekend eating, drinking and walking our way through San Francisco. I was surprised that the weather was only a high of 70 degrees! So much colder than in Colorado, I am currently sweating and slowly dying in the Boulder summer heat (almost 100 degrees last week!).