Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Food We Had in Italy

One attraction we were sure not to miss in Italy was eating fine food. We had a lot of restaurant meals with yummy pasta, though most of them did not get photographed. Frankly, we all know Italian pasta is awesome, so I'm focusing here on other stuff we ate.

Another food favorite in Italy is gelato, which is Italian for "ice cream." L has an uncanny ability to sense a gelato shop and a far too persistent penchant for requesting we stop. Maybe part of the problem is their trash cans.

Luckily L didn't try to lick this or any of the other ones

We stopped often though we had a rule that we could only have gelato in the afternoons. One shop owner by San Giovanni in Laterno put on a clown nose while he served us. J and L loved that. We tried all sorts of flavors, from vanilla and chocolate to pineapple and pistachio.

A simple cream flavor

We discovered rather late in our trip that it was much cheaper to go into a local deli and get a sandwich for lunch rather than to sit down in a restaurant. The sandwiches often come pre-made with prosciutto or cheese or mushrooms or any number of items. We liked the quickness, the local feeling, and the casual dining.

Prosciutto, mozzarella, and lettuce sandwich

Grilled panini with chicken and bacon!

We were surprised by the excellence of the pastries in Italy. In addition to gelato, L had many of the local donuts which are large and light and luscious.

L digs in!

L and a tiny muffin!

Chocolate croissant and tea

In Pompeii, the bed and breakfast we stayed at was part of a bakery so they delivered fresh pastries each morning for breakfast. A small bag was hung on the door with a well-wrapped package of goodies. The children had chocolate croissants while we parents tried the local pastries.

A package from the bakery

Local delicacies

The best pizza I had in Italy was in a small hole-in-the-wall restaurant in Naples. We had to go upstairs and sit in a tight area. Even though it was January they turned on the air conditioning since the heat rose from the kitchen to our table. Also rising was the food in a small dumb-waiter! Since it was a Friday, I ordered a vegetarian pizza with eggplant and tomatoes. The eggplant was roasted to perfection and the pizza crust had a nice chewiness to it.

Neapolitan pizza!!

We ate a lot of meals in our apartment in Rome, including one night of wine and mozzarella balls. A nearby shop sold mozzarella balls out of a metal vat. My wife liked the authenticity of it.

Italian at home!

Remember when you go to Italy to try more than just the pasta!

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