Sunday, May 6, 2018


Once again, it’s the month of May in Indianapolis, and things are FINALLY starting to warm up. That means one thing: it’s sandal weather! And the festivities are already starting. School is starting to wind down a bit; the primary elections are on Tuesday; work is going well; the Indy 500 is turning everything black and white checkered across the city; and everyone on the interstates thinks they are practicing for the race.
It may be from San Marino, but it's colors almost looks Italian.

Normal people would be spending the day outside, but I never claimed to be normal. Instead, I’m going to make some amazing food today. I’m starting with Piadina Romagnola. In a large bowl, I combined 4 c of all-purpose flour and 1 tsp salt. Then I mixed in 1 1/4 c of milk, 4 Tbsp of olive oil, and 2 tsp baking powder. I kneaded the dough for about 10 minutes until it was smooth and soft. I formed it into a ball and covered it in plastic wrap, letting it rest for about a half hour at room temperature. Then I divided it into 8 balls and let my son flatten them out into disks that were about ¼” thick or so. Some were circles, some were ovals, but it was all good. In a heated skillet on medium-heat, I cooked each disk until it started to brown on one side and flipped it to cook the same on the other. Once they were cooled, I folded it in half kind of like a pita, and filled it with ricotta chese, sopressata, and arugula. This was really good. It was almost like a street food or a quick lunch kind of thing. I could eat a couple of these for lunch and be good.

Definitely a meat-lovers version of pasta.
My main dish is Sammarinese Ragú Bolognese, and it certainly took the most time. I heated butter and oil in a large sauce pan over medium-high heat. Then I added in my chopped chicken livers, ground pork, and ground beef until all the meat was browned. I strained the meat into a bowl, and then dumped half of the drippings. I poured the other half of the drippings back into the pot and added in some chopped onion, garlic, diced celery, shredded carrots, 4 cans of diced tomatoes, chopped sage leaves, and red pepper flakes. I let it cook for about 10 minutes until they were soft but not browned. At that point, I added my meat back into the pot along with some milk, red wine, chicken stock, and bay leaves. I brought everything to a boil before reducing the heat and set the lid ajar for steam to escape. The recipe said to let this cook for 3 hours, but I let mine only cook for about 2 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. During the last half hour when the sauce was thickened, I added in a cup of heavy whipping cream, a little bit of soy sauce, some Worcestershire sauce, a little basil and parsley, salt and pepper. After I let this all simmer for another 20 minutes, I served this over linguine. I really enjoyed this, albeit it seemed a little oily. I think the wine flavor and the livers in the sauce kind of turned off my son, who normally likes spaghetti with marinara sauce, but my daughter ate all of hers.

This is the best kind of salad I can think of.
To go with this, I made Nutty Rocket Salad. Apparently, rocket is another word for arugula (I had never heard the term rocket). To mix the salad itself, I mixed together some arugula and baby spinach and sliced radishes. In a separate bowl, I mixed together my pecans and walnut pieces along with some pomegranate seeds and a little bit of cayenne pepper, tossing everything together. I added the nut mix to the greens and added in some feta cheese and some sopressata (that I had lightly sautéed to make crispy). I tossed everything together. For the vinaigrette, I heated my oil in a small saucepan and added in my garlic. Once it was browned, I removed it from the heat. Then I slowly added in balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, salt, and pepper. I put it back on the heat and stirred everything together for just about a minute or so, just enough to blend the flavors. I took it off the heat again and let it cool before drizzling it on the salad. I really enjoyed this. I think pomegranates and feta cheese were meant for each other. And the nuts in it went well with the arugula.

What's not to love about this? It was amazing. I kind of wish I ate a whole one instead of sharing with my daughter.
And finally I made my own version of Torta Tre Monti. From what I gathered, it’s most famously made by one bakery in San Marino. However, I bought some pizzelle waffle wafers and coated one side with a thin layer of Nutella. I added another layer and did the same thing. Then I added on more layer on top (so that I had 3 layers total). Then I coated the outer edges with Nutella as well. It has been pretty warm and humid today, so it was a little melty, but it was tasty nonetheless. I should have laid them on some wax paper and put them in the refrigerator to cool and harden the Nutella a bit. But I ate it way to quickly to think about doing something like that.

Overall, this was a fantastic meal!
One of the things that I saw San Marino was known for was their wine production. I didn’t make it over to my local wine shop to see if they had any, but it’s probably ok that I didn’t. I read later on that most wine from San Marino doesn’t get exported out, even to Italy! One day, I’d love to drink my way around the world. Instead, I’ll just have to drink and read books on my couch instead.

Up next: São Tomé and Principe

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