Eating Abroad: Southern Italy

This post follows last week’s format since I’m (luckily!) STILL on vacation in Italy!

Most of the food I ate this past week was made by people in their homes, so unfortunately you can’t just stop by when you’re visiting Southern Italy. However, I did notate what each dish is so at least you could know what you’re looking at! I also put numbers next to photos so you could easily reference them if you had questions. :) You must forgive me for using my iPhone for these photos, but I didn’t bring my computer abroad!

A little backstory: my grandpa moved to the United States from Sant’Ilario, Italy when he was 19. A very short 8 years later he opened his own bakery and was successfully in business for 49 years. His Calabrese cooking background has always been obvious in his food and this week, I got to try so many dishes that (luckily for me) tasted like home. Below are the food photos, but first, I’ll start with a photo of my grandpa!

Isn’t he so cute?!

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1: The super thin, eat-a-whole-12-inch-pizza-alone, Southern Italy pizza I was waiting for! All ready for me as soon as I got off the train in Locri!

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2: If you read last week’s post, I bet you’ll be able to guess what types of gelato I got. (Nocciola and Tiramisu #ftw.)

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3: My first breakfast in the south was ricotta and orange blossom honey on bread with fresh fruit from my grandpa’s land.

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4: Spaghetti alla Bolognese at a restaurant in Siderno called Hostaria Vecchia.

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5: We often found ourselves at restaurants where the waiter wouldn’t give us a menu, but would just simply ask, “What would you like?” The downside is analysis paralysis but the upside is that they’re willing to make just about anything you want! This night we asked for an appetizer and a dish of pasta, neither of which should include fish. This is the appetizer they came up with!

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6: Tasty lunch bruschetta with some homemade spicy red pepper-tomato spread.

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7: Gelato cake for my mom’s birthday!(Think DQ ice cream cake but better!)

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8: We had a huge meal at a friend of the family’s house: delicious antipasti, spinach and cheese-stuffed manocotti, pork with salad, and fresh fruit to end it all (so Italian)! I should mention this meal was made by a chef at his home, so yes, it tasted as good as you can imagine, if not better!

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9: Chef’s choice at a seaside restaurant in Siderno – I think it was pomodoro and basillico (tomato basil) sauce.

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10: HOMEMADE PASTA WHAAAAAT. I was dying. So fresh and delish.

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11: This looks boring right? Wrong. These eggs were the freshest eggs I’ve ever eaten – we’re talking farm to table – like, I consumed them the morning the hen laid them. Amazing.

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12: A family friend’s fiancĂ©e works at a local pasticceria (bakery) and made us this amazing strawberry peach cake.

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13: The grand foodie finale of this post has to be the wedding I attended: hors d’oeuvres, two courses of appetizers, two courses of primi piatti (“first plates,” usually pasta or risotto – in this case both), salad, a course of a secondi piatti (“second plates,” usually meat or fish, in this case meat since I don’t like fish), and a delicious wedding cake that tasted like high-end tiramisu. Because my mom and I were being chatty, we missed the fruit course (complete with chocolate fountains, duh) between meat and cake. I had never been so full in my life. (The top center image is the menu…it took up a whole sheet of paper.) The food was FANTASTIC. Congratulations to Antonio and Rosella! Gorgeous couple, gorgeous wedding.

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Next week’s post: back to regularly scheduled programming!

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