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A thoughtful blend of original ‪‎photography‬, ‪haiku‬ and ‪calligraphy‬; a cathartic journey upon fluid images and simple words.

30 Apr 2010

Chocolate Calamari soup: weird is good

Few days ago I wanted to experiment a bit with calamari. I had in mind two dishes to work on for dinner. The first didn't turn out as I wished so you will have to wait to try it for yourself, but the second was delish!
Not really much to write about this dish, the fact that it includes chocolate should be sufficient to stimulate your imagination.
Chocolate and calamari? You would say; yep they go quite well together too!

Try it and let me know...
I have also tried a new style of photography.

25 Apr 2010

Birthday under the Baroque shadows of mount Etna

I am not sure of it... For those who believe in astrology, this year previsions for my sign weren't all that sparkling; nothing serious, just another year uphill.
 How was my 30th year of life? I think it was a good year, a positive one. I started this blog at the end of my 29th, I opened to the world my rambling in the kitchen and brought it to other people kitchens too. I was happy to be finally able to make other people smile and have a pleasant different evening (maybe also memorable).
Opening to the world meant also starting to tweet. I met many great people, now great friends, thanks to this media. Food connects people at a higher level, faster, truer. The first Food Blogger Connect conference confirmed this to an unexpected level. Opening the foodie door brought me in contact with an inner portion of myself, with roots that I was unaware to have, influences and dependencies that were so loudly screaming inside me to become quieter than a flying butterfly.
Nothing is exclusively positive in our life, we won’t have white without black; I convinced myself of this when trying to reproduce a chiaroscuro as high-school task, I wasn't pushing hard enough my pencil and everything was flat. Thankfully we tend to forget most of our negative experiences so I can't really point out negative events; it is the overall lingering sensation of being on waiting for something to happen or to finish. Do you know when you feel yourself pushed to the border of the cliff? When the decision, a decision is building up in your head? Maybe this will be the year.

18 Apr 2010

Strawberries & the feathers

It is spring after all.
The sun might be missing from some of our skies, the gardens are though starting providing us a fresh bounty of aromatic fruits and vegetables.
In rainy days like this one, a perfect dinner relies on the suited person to share the food with you, dim lights a nice bottle of bubbly and some soothing music on the background that will company the melancholic sounds of rain drops hitting the windows, the balcony, the ponds. The moon will soon shine and all the warmth we need is already here with us. A lazy gaze to each other, tales of everyday life, challenges and satisfactions; what's missing from this picture? Strawberries, of course!
Those plump, luscious, fiery drops of sunlight trapped in sweet and tangy flesh with the tiny seeds of life sprinkled over the surface.

As main course in such a slow paced evening, I propose you my Chicken scaloppini in pomegranate and strawberry reduction sauce companied by a Tangy strawberries salad with fresh sage.
When I first tasted this dish I was very pleased by its complexity and at the same time lightness on the palate. The chicken scaloppini bring the major texture to the bite, their starchy coating is now creamy thanks to the wine that provides the major acidity to the dish (salad aside). A hint of garlic comes up to your nose giving the dish a homey feeling. The dark red sauce provides astringency, sweetness and the complex round aromas of strawberry and sage.
I perceived this dish as quite elegant and light; indeed a dish well suited for a tête-à-tête dinner with your sweet half. An elegant but homey dish that will let you loosen up in the moment.

15 Apr 2010

Bluefin Tuna "alla Siciliana" with grilled Saffron Polenta wedges

Again today it was ugly and gloomy, less rainy than yesterday at least. Daddy was on his way to the fish market in Syracuse quite early this morning and brought back nice treats for our weekly meals. He found some more fresh sardines, some calamari and a special treat, fresh Mediterranean tuna steaks.
Mommy doesn't eat much fish but fresh tuna is among the few she likes, especially cooked the way I am going to show you.
It is a traditional way of cooking meaty fish like tuna and it uses the best of the sun gifts: fresh tomatoes and basil. We don't eat this dish very often, at most twice a year, tuna is rare thankfully since it is an endangered specie; the days of the old "Mattanza" are over...
As side, I needed a starch (since I am in a no bred period) and spotting an half used package of polenta cornmeal, while reaching for it I saw also that mom had bought some saffron. So my side dish was set: grilled saffron polenta wedges.
Back to the recipe, are you ready with your tissue papers? You are going to have a watering mouth, I advised you ;-)
Here we go!

Bluefin Tuna alla Siciliana (aka in fresh tomatoes and onion sauce)
Tuna alla Siciliana with Grilled saffron polenta wedges

13 Apr 2010

Sun bathed Sardines

Oh the sun... I came to Sicily with the hope to see more sun than I would staying in Germany but, I was wrong. At least so far... On almost 8 days that I arrived in my home town, we have had only 3 days of sun; at least one was Easter. 
Tonight I was in the mood for some sun, the day has been gloomy all the way through and rainy. A look in the fridge and I realized we still had few fresh sardines that my father had bought at the fish market; we never run out of oranges around here and this is the period of blood oranges so bride and groom ready, time for the wedding to take place.

Sun bathed Sardines

9 Apr 2010

Easter & the Sea

For this Easter lunch we decided to visit our favorite seafood place by the sea shores. The little, family run restaurant “I Malavoglia” is located in the once fishermen village of Aci Trezza near Catania. The restaurant takes its name from a novel of Giovanni Verga; a father of Italian literature who placed in this village his stories depicting the everyday struggle with poverty of a fishermen family whose only hope for survival is to rely on the holy Providence.

We are on the cliffs of Mount Etna. Behind us lines of villas inhabit the inhospitable but fertile grounds, orange, lemon and loquat trees. The ground consists mainly of lava stones of different nature reddish and sharp high on the cliffs and smoothed by the continuous flushing of the sea waves at the shores. The sea is dark blue and clear. The horizon is pierced by the dark jagged silhouettes of the Faraglioni; big boulders of lava stone racing for the grade of hills which, following the tradition, are the last surviving vestiges of Odysseus’ visit to the giant Polyphemus living inside the volcano. It is said in fact that the choleric giant threw Odysseus’ ship these stones after having had his unique eye blinded by a wooden pole.